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  • Backlot Beautification is Coming!

    You have probably all heard about the so called DCA "Project Sparkle"...Well it looks like some info has finally be released about what that might entail and where and when it will be starting...

    Okay. Maybe you've already seen pictures of the exterior of DCA's new "Monsters, Inc." attraction. Which (obviously) apes the look of the title sequence of that 2001 Pixar Animation Studios release.

    And maybe you've also already heard about how this redo of "Superstar Limo" will be a dark ride in the tradition of Disneyland's "Peter Pan Flight" and "Mr. Toad's Wild Ride." As in: This attraction won't follow the exact storyline of this Peter Docter film. But -- rather -- will recreate memorable moments, scenes & settings from this computer animated motion picture.

    But here's something that you probably didn't know. As part of the installation of this new California Adventure attraction, this section of the Hollywood Pictures Backlot is due to receive a rather extreme makeover.

    Why For? Well, to be honest, DCA visitors never actually embraced the story that the Imagineers were trying to tell in this part of the theme park. As in: Hollywood Pictures Backlot was supposed to be just like a real Hollywood studio backlot. Full of facades that look great from the front. but -- when you wander around to the back -- these buildings just look bland.

    Well, nobody comes to a Disney theme park to see bland & boring buildings. Which is why -- as part of "Project Sparkle" (I.E. A new initiative for this four-year-old theme park. Which is supposedly going to allow the Imagineers to "plus" various parts of California Adventure over the next two years) -- the area around "Muppetvision 3D" and "Monsters, Inc." is going to get a facelift.

    Current plans call for the Imagineers to install an attractive fountain in this open plaza. The exterior of the "Muppetvision 3D" theater is also due to receive some TLC. So that it can then go from its current industrial appearance to something more whimsical & fun.

    "So what's the timetable for this beautification project?," you ask. Well, based on what I've been hearing, the construction walls go up in late September and then will come down again in late November / early December. Just in time for "Monsters, Inc." 's soft opening.
    Here is the link to the article:

    http://www.jimhillmedia.com/mb/artic...le.php?ID=1417

    What do you guys think?
    Last edited by disneyray86; 05-02-2005, 03:57 PM.

  • #2
    IMHO I like it, DCA needs this so badly!






    ~ Here you leave today and enter the world of yesterday tomorrow and fantasy
    ~

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    • #3
      Other than the comment about the fountain the article doesn't say a whole lot about what Project Beautification will include. I wonder if this will wrap around the stand alone building and effect the 101 Dalamation's dressing rooms and what not at the northwest corner of the Hyperion Theatre by the restrooms?






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      • #4
        I'm hoping that this eventualy means they'll go back and add the lobby and everything they were origionaly planning for the Hyperton (before it got slashed) they should either do it with everything else Jim's saying or they should do it whenever Alladin leaves (inbetween shows basicaly)

        as far as fountains go if I'm not mistaken WDI found them very useful in adding detail to the parks while keeping the roads spacious

        I mean from what I recall it's been said that the bigger roads make it hard to add intimate detail like what we see at Disneyland which is something imagineers have wanted for parks that use the larger streets (like DCA and WDW parks) so they found ways of provinding up close detail and keeping the large streets

        I could be mistaken but hey more detail is more detail

        I wonder if it'll be like some of those fountains found at WDSP?
        "We all have sparks, imagination! it's how our minds... create creations!"

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        • #5
          This article certainly doesn't say much, but I hope that it's true. That area really does need to be fixed up.
          Visited: DL Dec. 1989, Dec. 1992, Dec. 1995, WDW Jan. 1999, DL March 2001,
          WDW Jan. 2005, DL Jan. 2006, Nov. 2006, Dec. 2012, WDW Feb. 2013
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          • #6
            True indeed!






            ~ Here you leave today and enter the world of yesterday tomorrow and fantasy
            ~

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            • #7
              He is feeding off our board for his rumors... I find it kinda funny...

              There is 1000 things wrong with the "Hollywood Studios Backlot"...

              Beautification ain't going to fix any one of them...

              First off you have this monstrosity of a falls front deviding the "lot"... It gives the entrance area an illusion of a city street...

              Well that false front in front of Animation has got to go... Including the Phillup A Couch Casting Director sign... I am appalled at the site of it... and we ask our KIDS to go to the Playhouse Disney attraction right across the way... Or view it on the way to Muppets 3D... Or look at it on the way to Monsters INC... If we are going to make this a family area... that sign MUST GO...

              Take the DUH ampitheter out... Turn Millionare into a live ABC sound stage... Film Whose Line is it Anyway in where Millionare used to be and sell tickets... Dang, you own the rights!!! Have a new permanent c-list cast, record live, burn cds of the production, sell it to guests...

              Turn the drive in to Jack Rabbit Slims... No body will know, kids will love it... Its adult, tarantino, and clean... funny how that works... Put in lobby at the hyperion... In the center put in a plaza like area... have Creative Entertainment come up with a show that mimicks a film shoot there... Staring Mickey...

              That is going to take more than a "sparkle experiance" it is going to take construction... some of which they have to do anyway...
              Check out my other blog:

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              • #8
                ^^^ What sign and ampitheater are you talking about?

                I thought it was really sad to look at the company's well-made cartoonish maps of the resort and look at this corner of DCA. Even the little maps show drawings of buildings with a flat facade and a blank, ugly tan building just behind it. The Hyperion looked especially sad.

                They could stand to drop the movie set act and try a little harder for the age of classic Hollywood like the one seen in the early part of The Aviator. That way it also doesn't feel completely like they tried to shoehorn the MGM Studios into one land.

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                • #9
                  If they make this feel more like a "real" hollywood, instead of a hollywood set, it would be so much cooler! There is to much reality stuff in DCA, a fantasy Hollywood would be cool. That corner of DCA is boring... and depressing. I think this is a great idea!

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by cellarhound
                    Turn the drive in to Jack Rabbit Slims... No body will know, kids will love it...
                    That is the single greatest "fix-it" idea for DCA I have ever heard :bow: :lol:

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                    • #11
                      Real Hollywood? Are we talking about the impression of Hollywood tourists are given when the tool around a lame tour of Universal and occassionally Warner Bros? Backlots are BORING...sound stages (IE like the Hyperion) are BORING and I for one do not want this to mimic the real deal...it should be over stylized and fun. Real = blank building.






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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by MickeyMania
                        They could stand to drop the movie set act and try a little harder for the age of classic Hollywood like the one seen in the early part of The Aviator. That way it also doesn't feel completely like they tried to shoehorn the MGM Studios into one land.
                        Well, I hope this Sparkle project comes to pass, but more like MM's version above. And I'd especially like to see the Animation building done to look like the Disney studios. That's something your average person wouldn't be able to see anywhere else.

                        Imagine though if it was pushed a little further forward than The Aviator's Hollywood. Aim for, say... and this number just randomly popped into my head... 1955. You have Lady and the Tramp. You have the recent 20,000 Leagues on the big screen. You have the Disneyland TV show which, in its first year, showcased the beginning of Davy Crocket. For that matter, just a couple years before (1953), you have a True Life Adventure documentary with the catchy name of Country Bear. Might be a cool basis for an AA show?

                        Then, create a border where the fantasy Disney Studios ends and have guests pass through the studio gate into Hollywood proper. That's where you have your Marilyn Monroes, your James Deans, your Cineramadomes, and all of your other posh 50s dream Hollywood images. And, talk about a corporate tie-in, the first McDonald's franchise also happened to open in 1955. Of course, this one was in Des Plained, Iowa, but who wants to nitpick? The NoHo store opened in '53, and it's a quick and logical way to introduce California car culture in a bean counter-friendly way. But the main look of the land is very bungalow, kidney-shaped pools, palm trees... the kind of place ToT could call home. And it's also hilly and landscaped enough to meld seamlessly into any espansion.
                        See, George Lucas? I'm not the only one! [<-- i.e. this is not my site]
                        78 Reasons To Hate Star Wars Episode 1

                        "There are fashions in reading, even in thinking. You don't have to follow them unless you want to."

                        "A lot of young people think the future is closed to them, that everything has been done. This is not so. There are still plenty of avenues to be explored."

                        -- Walt Disney

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by ModHatter
                          And, talk about a corporate tie-in, the first McDonald's franchise also happened to open in 1955. Of course, this one was in Des Plained, Iowa, but who wants to nitpick?
                          HAHA use micechatters LOVE to nitpick. who are we kidding? we all know if Disney tried to pawn off McD's origin as being in Cali, we'd all freak out and add about another million threads on here crying out how they're moving even farther away from the theme as it was originally presented, how this was a worse idea than closing country bears and creating pooh, why not rename it Walt Disney Studios part deux, etc. lol, but i love the rest of your ideas. had the current management been in power for a few yrs longer now, this wouldve been an awsome addition to the 50th celebrations. Everything they've put into Lincoln wouldve fit perfectly into this idea...........
                          Here you leave today and enter the world of yesterday, tomorrow, and fantasy.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by cellarhound
                            There is 1000 things wrong with the "Hollywood Studios Backlot"...

                            Beautification ain't going to fix any one of them...

                            First off you have this monstrosity of a falls front deviding the "lot"... It gives the entrance area an illusion of a city street...

                            Take the DUH ampitheter out... Turn Millionare into a live ABC sound stage... Film Whose Line is it Anyway in where Millionare used to be and sell tickets... Dang, you own the rights!!! Have a new permanent c-list cast, record live, burn cds of the production, sell it to guests...
                            Well, I partially agree with you. Sure, the Backlot could use a lot of work, but when I hit DCA, it's the only place I go for ToT and Muppets 3-D. I like the ambiance and the aim. What bothers me is that WE are closer to the film industry capital of the world, but Florida has the MGM Studios, which, I understand, is better, for the most part. I'm not asking for a copy of it, I just think it could be better.

                            I agree with the Whose Line idea. They do actually film (or did at one point) shows and movies on the backlot, why not Whose Line? It would totally draw crowds, it's like an awesome cult following...

                            It's really all just a nice facade without any real action in terms of seriously portraying the 30s film industry of California...
                            My mind won't rest
                            and I don't sleep
                            Not even in my dreams...
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                            written by Stevie Nicks

                            Chasen Matthew Pacheco
                            1985-2005

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                            • #15
                              Ooooh, but McDonald's IS a california creation. Read Fast Food Nation. The mcDonald brothers owned the original in San Bernardino, California. Even McDonald's Corp. acknowledges that the one that Kroc started was the second, but the first by that company after it bought the concept rights. It also wasn't a franchise. So saying the original was in Cali (before 1955, sorry) isn't false after all.

                              not to nitpick...
                              "I just want to say, this is the best trip ever." - Aidan at age 4

                              "No. I have no kiss in my mouth for Daddy." -Alida on Father's Day

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                              • #16
                                You know what would be neat? In Burbank, there's a store where they sell wardrobe items that were used once or twice on TV. Shopping there is so much fun, and you can get some good deals. It's especially good for people who are small, like, you know, film actresses and preteen girls. Just imagine if Disney opened such a store in the Backlot. They could charge so much for outfits worn by the Disney Channel stars or people in the movies and people would willingly pay. It would be even cooler if they sold things for affordable prices, ha ha who am I kidding.

                                Seriously, though, it would be really fun just to go in and try stuff on or even just browse. I have a few pair of pants I got from the store in Burbank - I always wonder what show they were on.

                                It's weird that Disney is actually a studio and yet they have nothing even remotely authentic on their "backlot".

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                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by Ian
                                  Ooooh, but McDonald's IS a california creation. Read Fast Food Nation. The mcDonald brothers owned the original in San Bernardino, California. Even McDonald's Corp. acknowledges that the one that Kroc started was the second, but the first by that company after it bought the concept rights. It also wasn't a franchise. So saying the original was in Cali (before 1955, sorry) isn't false after all.

                                  not to nitpick...
                                  Yeah, I was quickly reading up on that as I was typing, and for the sake of Disney storytelling, I threw a few different ideas into one representative location.
                                  http://wemweb.com/chr66a/sbr66_museu...s_history.html

                                  Technichally, according to this, "#1" was actually the ninth McDonald's. The NoHo store is the third. But "#1" was opened in '55, which still makes it significant to McDonald's history.

                                  And, yes, it would have been great to see some of these ideas for the 50th. Still, there's two whole days for Matt to write these ideas into his press conference
                                  See, George Lucas? I'm not the only one! [<-- i.e. this is not my site]
                                  78 Reasons To Hate Star Wars Episode 1

                                  "There are fashions in reading, even in thinking. You don't have to follow them unless you want to."

                                  "A lot of young people think the future is closed to them, that everything has been done. This is not so. There are still plenty of avenues to be explored."

                                  -- Walt Disney

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                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by dsnyfnatic
                                    HAHA use micechatters LOVE to nitpick. who are we kidding? we all know if Disney tried to pawn off McD's origin as being in Cali, we'd all freak out and add about another million threads on here crying out how they're moving even farther away from the theme as it was originally presented, how this was a worse idea than closing country bears and creating pooh, why not rename it Walt Disney Studios part deux, etc.
                                    Y'know, whenever I hear this about McDonald's, I always get a little confused. True, the first franchised McDonald's was in Middle America, and that's where they have their headquarters. But the first restaurant of McDonald's (and the one from which the idea stemmed) was located in San Bernadino. So there ya go.
                                    Last edited by pjdonnell; 05-16-2005, 08:07 PM.
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                                    • #19
                                      Nothing short of demolition will solve DCA's problems

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                                      • #20
                                        I think this renovation could work with some modest investments. The entire area would be renamed "Hollywoodland" (think back to Disney's original plan to add an area like this to DL back in the early 90's). The arch over the land's entrance would remain, it would just have to be updated. Maybe a slogan could be added to the arch. Something like: Hollywoodland (and then under that would read) "The Hollywood that always will be" The street would become a REAL street from the 20's/30's like MGM. The backlot would become "The Disney Studios" and retain the backlot look (only improved).

                                        For the backlot/studio mini-area we could have the Sci-Fi Drive In restaurant where the Hollywood and Dine is, Monsters, Muppets (with the MGM Muppets facade and a the Muppets fountain from MGM). The Prop Shop selling Muppet items could remain. Remove the open air theater and enclose that area. Create a new shop in that space that opens out to Hollywood Blvd. side. On the studio backlot side it could be made to look like the facade of the studio offices. The Millionaire Building could stay and be renamed the "ABC Theater" and used to show an updated version of Superstar TV show that used to play at MGM back in the early 90's.

                                        Out on the Hollywood Boulevard the new store created from the closing up of the back of the Fairfax Market facade will become a the Hollywood Five and Dime themed store. This store would sell Hollywood and Disney Studio themed trinkets and gifts. The Frank Lloyd Wright bathrooms will need to have some design elements added behind the facade to make it look less like a movie set. Inside the bath room no changes would be needed. The remainder of the Animation / Playhouse Disney side of the street would remain unchanged with the exception of the "Stage ##" signs painted over. I kind of like the "wacky" fake businesses since they seem fairly over the top and "Hollywood" to me. The Hyperion Theater wait area will be enclosed and create a new lobby and nice staircase entry. The new entry into the lobby will face the ToT exit, and will unload (or exit after shows) through a smaller side door / facade across from the Animation Building. The fake facade of the Hyperion entrance will be torn down and "real shops" will be added on either side of the new Hyperion Exit. On the left, a new enclosed store. Not sure what type of store yet. On the right, a new location for an expanded FairFax Market snack location. The Hyperion Theater interior will not be changed.

                                        What do you guys think?
                                        WALT'S DISNEYLAND DEDICATION SPEECH! - To all who come to this happy place, welcome! Disneyland is your land. Here age relives fond memories of the past, and here youth can savour the challenge and promise of the future. Disneyland is dedicated to the ideals, the dreams, and the hard facts that have created America, with the hope that it will become a source of joy, and inspiration to all the world.

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