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20000 leagues under the sea tribute : The WDW extinct submarine ride

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  • 20000 leagues under the sea tribute : The WDW extinct submarine ride

    Take a trip with us back to 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea - Reliving The Magic Of An Extinct Walt Disney World Attraction



    This is the first part of a 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea tribute, told in amazing photos and videos! (click the photos for a larger version)

    In 1959 the Disneyland submarine ride opened along with the Matterhorn Bobsleds and the Monorail. As the Disneyland submarine ride became extremely popular with guests, Walt Disney Imagineering began to work on an even more ambitious version for what would become Walt Disney World. However, it was not going to be a simple ride clone. The idea was to make as best use as possible of the larger space the company now owned in Florida, and what became 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea did indeed do just that. At 11.5 million gallons of water throughout, it would be one of the biggest and most expensive Disney attractions ever conceived.

    Below, a wonderful painting by Leo Svendsen for the WDW 20000 Leagues ride.



    Despite the best efforts of the construction and installation teams attached to the 20,000 Leagues project, the attraction would ultimately open two weeks after the Magic Kingdom due to infrastructure problems with the lagoon. On October 14 1971 however, the first guests boarded one of the twelve (the ride is sometimes cited as having fourteen, which would be correct if counting the two submarines grappling with Giant Squids on either side of the track) submarines to take the ten minute voyage of discovery that would cover the surface of the earth from underwater, without ever leaving the state of Florida.

    The completed attraction covered almost a quarter of Fantasyland, with the lagoon and caverns-hidden show building surrounded by palm trees and volcanic rock, meant to evoke the impression of Captain Nemo's Pacific Ocean base Vulcania. A storage facility at the back of the show building served to house submarines removed from the main line during day-to-day operation, and also included a dry dock for repair work.

    Along the shores of the lagoon, small beaches were built, one with a chest of abandoned pirate treasure.




    Read the full article on MiceChat partner site, Disney and more, and then return here to discuss this much missed attraction:

    Disney and more: 20000 leagues under the sea tribute : Part one : The WDW extinct submarine ride

    -
    http://disneyandmore.blogspot.com/

  • #2
    Re: 20000 leagues under the sea tribute : The WDW extinct submarine ride

    This one was really fun! I'd almost forgotten how much I missed this attraction and how important it was to Fantasyland. Over the years, WDW's Fantasyland has slowly become more of a little girls land. The more boy centric attractions like the Nemo subs and Mr. Toad have been replaced with a Pooh playground and Mickey's Philarmagic.

    They have dumbed down and aged down Fantasyland. Would love to see some version of the subs return to the Magic Kingdom, even if it is Tokyo's dry-for-wet 20,000 Leagues attraction.

    Great work Alain!

    -Dusty
    MiceChat 101: Be NICE! If you don't play well with others, you are in the wrong sandbox.

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    • #3
      Re: 20000 leagues under the sea tribute : The WDW extinct submarine ride

      I think an even greater idea is that if the attraction doesn't return, WDW looks at copying Discoveryland's Nautilus walkthrough. A hallmark of Disney has been walkthrough attractions (Swiss Family/Tarzan's Treehouse, for example), and walking through that Nautilus is really a great experience. It is so detailed, and the "squid attack" is probably the most believable recreation of that important scene of the movie.

      Although most of the original props are in the DLP walkthrough, I think a replica would not be detrimental to any theme issues or anything.

      Great article, by the way.
      "You tried your best and you failed miserably. The lesson is, never try." ~ Homer Simpson

      Avatar designed by Greg Maletic

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      • #4
        Re: 20000 leagues under the sea tribute : The WDW extinct submarine ride

        We went on our honeymoon to WDW in 1995, so we just missed it! I would have LOVE to have seen it all in person!

        What if, as a bigger nod to the old 20,000 Leagues attraction, they had JUST ONE of the subs be the Nautilus instead of the current yellow Nemo subs.
        Last edited by disney-fan-reborn; 08-20-2009, 05:37 PM.

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        • #5
          Re: 20000 leagues under the sea tribute : The WDW extinct submarine ride

          It is so sad to realize how pathetic that area of the Mk has now become..

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          • #6
            Re: 20000 leagues under the sea tribute : The WDW extinct submarine ride

            I missed 20,000 Leagues as well and with the cost and bureaucracy of building such an attraction, I doubt it will ever return. Does anybody know how much bigger it was than DLR's? Also, some old vac. pics of the area would sure be fun to see at this point.

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            • #7
              Re: 20000 leagues under the sea tribute : The WDW extinct submarine ride

              20,000 Leagues Under the Sea was also a fantastic segue from Tomorrowland into Fantasyland as the attraction could easily fit into both lands.

              I so miss that attraction!

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              • #8
                Re: 20000 leagues under the sea tribute : The WDW extinct submarine ride

                i never went on this ride (by the time i went the WDW one was already gone) but now i wish could just some how have a dream about it......it would posible be the next best thing to time traveling , heck sometimes i dream about short feutur events in my live, ahh the cool but confusing 'Dream-ja-vu'
                Hello? I seem to be in some sort of inter dimensional dimension with no way in or out....Send Help! and Pie! pumpkin peferably

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