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Tom Sawyer Island

 
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admin
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Joined: 28 Jul 2007
Posts: 381

PostPosted: Mon Jul 30, 2007 4:40 am    Post subject: Tom Sawyer Island Reply with quote

Hi there,

www.miceage.com started a rumor suggesting that Tom Sawyer Island would be changed to something with a Pirates-theme. What do you people over here think about this?

IMHO...I hate pretty much everything that was done with financial profit as the main reason, and I would find this idea a very big mistake. Without quiet parts in the park, how is Disneyland different from any other park? The differences are really fading away.

And I guess the term "sightlines" has been abandoned? Pirates in Frontierland...yeah right Razz

dancinbelle
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Posts: 18
(10/4/06 9:34 am)
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New Post Tom v Jack
That's really strange! I guess the thinking is no one cares about Tom Sawyer, they want to update the island, etc. But in the middle of FRONTIERLAND? Unless they redesign the whole park (yeah right), it won't work. Then again, I wouldn't put anything past Disney.

cloudboy123
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Posts: 9
(10/5/06 8:55 pm)
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New Post Tom V. Jack I have never been to California, and I don't quite grasp the layout there, so I am unsure how this would fit. Somehow they managed to fit Pirates into New Orleans, and isn't that on the Rivers of America? Still, I would tend to think a pirate-themed island would be very, very out of place there.

I can understand wanting to redo the island, and a pirte island would be a great idea, but I think they could just as easily come up with other ideas more fitting to the theme. What really bothers me is that they are extending the Pirates franchise a little too far, and I think they are at serious risk of not only turning the audience away from the Pirates franchise, but also of seriously harming their reputation with future movies.

So, I understand the motivation, but question it's appropriateness.

Holly3216
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Posts: 112
(10/5/06 10:57 pm)
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New Post Re: Tom V. Jack I was doing research for something else the other day, and a historian told me that pirates were actually congregated around the panhandle of Florida and such... so maybe it's not so out of place historically to have pirates near New Orleans (isn't it somewhere close to the ocean and was a major port?)... but of course, the new movies are far from creating a historic portrayal... and theme parks draw on popular imagination, which isn't necessarily historically accurate either...

The worry I have is that it seems there is a push to make everything shiny and exciting (and fiberglass...) and related to current brands... If their aim is to just create something "more exciting", they might damage the ambience and emotional appeal of the entire area (much the way that Aladdin's Flying Carpets tends to ruin the feeling of arrival that the open terrace in Adventureland used to create at WDW, as well as clashing with the ambience of the area... making the ride seem new and shiny, but fake and contrived... and the surrounding area old, faded and cluttered). If they actually strive to create a "reality" of it's own with the new island theme, and maintain it as a place to explore, discover and play (and not play in contrived, constructed ways, but providing multiple avenues so that children can fill in the gaps with their own imaginations, to whatever level their different personalities tend to engage and interact)... then they have the opportunity to create something quite elegant and immersive...

Tom Sawyer is more a part of our cultural heritage as Americans, which was important to Walt Disney... but, of course, the old American apple pie and tales based in the nation's history don't seem to draw in crowds like they used to... (although I'd like to see the characters in the Hall of President's sing and dance in order to be more "exciting"and "contemporary"... it probably still wouldn't get a passing glance from most people...)

Edited by: Holly3216 at: 10/5/06 10:59 pm
dancinbelle
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Posts: 20
(10/6/06 2:07 pm)
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New Post Movie Does anyone know when the last re-make of Tom Sawyer came out? The thinking might be that little kids don't know what the story is, I know I didn't untill I read much later . . . whereas potc is much more recent. It might be kinda cool though, like do a show of storming port royale with the audience?

Holly3216
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Posts: 113
(10/6/06 4:38 pm)
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New Post Re: Movie 1995: Tom and Huck: Walt Disney Pictures
www.imdb.com/title/tt0112302/

I think Mark Twain should be part of a kid's general education, but that's another topic... I don't necessarily think that we should replace an attraction just because children may not be familiar. If they are young children (2-5 years), they just want to play... If they are older children (6-15), it gives them a chance to learn, or even ask their parents and get the extra opportunity to bond through shared knowledge. That used to be the beauty of Epcot: it stimulated people to learn more about things they might not have known much about when they arrived... It would be very sad if they started stripping Magic Kingdom down to "modernize" it, like they did to the Living Seas at Epcot. I don't think the new rehab at Living Seas and the new "story" will have quite the longstanding appeal that the original story did (which survived in-tact almost 20 years).

cloudboy123
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Posts: 10
(10/7/06 9:23 am)
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New Post Re: Movie I don't even think the real issue is Tom Sawyer itself. Yes, that is the name and inspiration for the area, but really, the theme is more of an old-fashioned 19th century country playground. Teh Tom and huck overlay really is there just to give it cohesiveness and some sembelence of a story.

I think that, if the goal is simply to bring life to that part of the park, there is a lot they could do under that theme. Perhaps do more with the cave system as a pseudo-walk through attraction. Make the fort into more of a playground type of environment. Kids love to explore - there could lots of old shacks and other buildings to check out. Swaying bridges are always a hit, as are jungle gyms and those little roun-about things.

dancinbelle
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Posts: 21
(10/7/06 1:41 pm)
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New Post Playtime Some people might not want to take their kids to the island, saying "Why should they run around and play? We came for rides not a fancy playground." If there was a seperate park just for interactive toys, it might fly, but Tom's island falls by the wayside.

Meloncov
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Posts: 166
(10/7/06 3:41 pm)
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New Post Pirates Huh. I was just about to start a thread about how I thought that Disney was going to make a pirates themed daytime show where Fantasmic is done. I guese I was half right.

I think that if Disney spends the money on it, the Pirates franchise has great potential to make an incredibly engaging play area. I wonder if they'll incorporate any of the interactive stuff they've been expiermenting with at Epcot.

No Limits Thriller
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Posts: 74
(10/7/06 3:57 pm)
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New Post . "The worry I have is that it seems there is a push to make everything shiny and exciting (and fiberglass...) and related to current brands... If their aim is to just create something "more exciting", they might damage the ambience and emotional appeal of the entire area "

Agreed! ^^ Smile

Holly3216
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Posts: 114
(10/7/06 6:06 pm)
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New Post Re: . I only have 2 seconds, but I wanted to post a link to Re-Imagineering -- lots of discussion about the topic there:
imagineerebirth.blogspot.com/2006/10/irrelevance-of-mark-twains-tom-sawyer.html

Meloncov
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Posts: 167
(10/7/06 11:55 pm)
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New Post RE:RE:.
That seemed like a rather knee-jerk change=bad reaction. What's iconic about Tom Sawyer's Island has nothing to do with Tom Sawyer. Its about bobbing bridges and rifles, and more importantly, being a section of the park where the expierence is more heavily guest-controlled. Changing the theme from Twain to Pirates just gives the imageneers an excuse to give the section some much needed maintence and remodeling.

dancinbelle
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Posts: 22
(10/8/06 9:55 am)
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New Post Fine Line There is a fine line between updating and destroying. You want to keep things new and fresh, but you don't want to replace your main draws. At least POTC was originally a Disney ride. Could the fact that the movie premiers have been held on Tom Sawyer's Island affect the decision?

ewc
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Posts: 473
(10/16/06 3:51 pm)
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New Post Yo Ho! Long time no post, but I saw this topic and thought Iíd chime in. For those of you that werenít around during the Sotto era, we discussed changes we would like to see happen at DisneylandÖ one of the changes Eddie mentioned was rethemeing Tom Sawyers Island into a pirate inspired theme. If you think about it, itís a natural progression from New Orleans square where Pirates of the Caribbean is housed. 10 years from now when the young kids donít know who Jack Sparrow is, theyíll still know about pirates. As POTC has shown the theme of pirates is a classic theme.

The people who relate to Tom Sawyer now are the grandparents. In general young kids and parents of young kids never connected with Tom. Pirates, on the other hand can draw an emotional memory from any age group including grandparents. I know I use to play pirates when I was young, but despite reading Tom Sawyer in sixth grade I never related to him nor do I have an appreciation of that era. But pirates on the other hand I have an childhood connection with. Heck, even Tom Sawyer played pirates on the Mississippi river!

Currently I donít think the theme of Tom Sawyerís islands is a natural extension of the surrounding lands. Itís doesnít fit in with Frontierland nor does it fit in with New Orleans square. However, the island does fit into the context of the American River and visually does not clash with the surrounding lands.

Of course there could be sightline issues and other continuity themes to worry about but with a pirates theme but thatís what the Imagineers are for, to take the concepts from corporate and make it work. Itís actually refreshing to see something new go into Disneyland that isnít a Pixar character.

If the Imagineers are able to bring in the pirates without making the island clash with the respective theme when viewed from Frontier land or Critter country I think the Pirates theme makes a lot of sense.

-Eric

cloudboy123
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Posts: 11
(10/18/06 10:23 pm)
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New Post Re: Yo Ho! See, I am not so sure about how the story lines play into this. Go back five years, before the movie came out, and no kid ever had any interest in Pirate stuff. It may seem like it was always there now, but it, too, is a trend. Just Like Tom sawyer was.

But when it comes to Tom Sawyers Island, I think we are getting way to carried away with the story line. We have sold ourselves so much on the importance of storylines we are forgetting people are really experiencing a setting and place. Tom Sawyer is secondary to the island - it's more about the country and forts and indians and imagination.

The question is, is it being redone because it needs to be redone, or because they need a marketing vehicle? Personally, I think they can come up with better themes that would be more fitting than a Pirates theme.

Not having been to DisneyLand, how large is the island in the Jungle Cruise, and how is that situatued in reference to the Treehouse?

dancinbelle
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Posts: 25
(10/20/06 4:52 am)
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New Post oops I assumed we were talking about Orlando, not Anaheim!Surprised Is the setup there similar to Orlando?

ewc
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Posts: 474
(10/20/06 7:59 pm)
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New Post Marketing isn't new & what would you do? Interest in pirates has always been there, not to the level it is currently but itís a timeless theme. How many of you remember the pirates Lego collections?

As far as the new attraction being a marketing vehicle, so many attractions at Disneyland can be tied to marketing. Sleeping Beautyís castle was named so in order to market the movie that would be coming out 4 years after Disneyland opened. In fantasyland all of the dark rides have a marketing tie in, under the umbrella theme of fantasy land. All the attractions in the park are there to make money; money at Disneyland is made by creating places people want to be which is measured by those turn style counters.

Disneyland wasnít built because it was a cool idea, it was built because Disney and investors believed it would make money.

So here comes the Imagination part of ďImagination Portal,Ē given that Tom Sawyers Island isnít drawing enough visitors, what do you do? If you donít like the pirate idea, propose a new solution. If you like the pirates island how do you make it into Pirates Island.

Oh, by the way, Disney wants to have the re-opening of this Island be news worthy.

-Eric

dancinbelle
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Posts: 26
(10/21/06 6:05 am)
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New Post Hello? Didn't Walt Disney say he wanted a park where adults AND children could have fun? Who doesn't call that idea cool? Other people might have seen it as a marketing vehicle, but not everyone. I do agree that a renovation of the island would get lots of news attention, but then so does everything else major they do!

No Limits Thriller
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Posts: 76
(10/23/06 11:33 am)
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New Post Re: Hello?

Quote:Disneyland wasnít built because it was a cool idea, it was built because Disney and investors believed it would make money.



I don't agree. I think Walt once said: "We didn't go into Disneyland just with the idea of making money. Disneyland is a work of love" - or something along those lines.

dancinbelle
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Posts: 31
(10/23/06 12:45 pm)
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New Post yeah Quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Disneyland wasnít built because it was a cool idea, it was built because Disney and investors believed it would make money.
-------------------------------------------------------

No. Investors told Walt that it was really stupid, he was throwing money away, etc. Now people expect it to make money, and that's causing problems.

cloudboy123
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Posts: 12
(10/23/06 7:48 pm)
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New Post Ideas Again, I am not against the idea of a pirate island per se, rather I am against the idea of:

1) putting a Carribean themed island in the middle of a frontier and colonial themed land, and

2) doing a really poor job of cross merchandising and really ruining the brand.

But, since this IS the imagination forum, I certainly would love to start brainstorming!

First, I don't think the frontier theme is completely tapped out, I just think it is executed improperly. Lots of swinging bridges, climbing places, old buildings to explore and places to hide can be quite fun.

I would think about making a better restaurant there. Agreed that service to the island could be a problem, but I could see this as an attractive place.

Perhaps the Native American theme would work - again lots of swinging things and hiding places, perhaps some kind of mild canoe ride instead of in the River?

Go further west, the rugged spires and such of the national parks. Big Thunder looks cool, especially with the falls and such, but you can't really walk through it and explore. Rock climbing walls, anyone?

Caves would play into that, but why not go whole hog on the caves theme?

It might also make a decent show ground, although it may be a little thin for this.

Have you seen those pedal cars and trains? A childs ride, but it might help them burn off some extra energy.

Perhaps the treehouse can be expanded.

Lastly, why not play up the simple nature conservatory element of it, instead of being for kids, make it something for adults?

Holly3216
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Posts: 120
(10/24/06 7:42 am)
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New Post Re: Ideas
Yeah... there probably *is* some cool aspect of the West that could be played up, and would appeal to kids. When I think of the West, I think of how one of my ancestors travelled with Lewis & Clark, and how adventurous that was to explore land that wasn't really documented before...there's not many "frontiers" left... we have few opportunities nowadays to really feel like adventurers and intrepid explorers. Later, you had the world of the Wild West (and I like that "Wild, Wild West" movie with Will Smith... why not have an area with playground elements that look like retro-1800's inventions?)... I think if the potential stories of that area of the park were really explored, they could find something that fit the area, and also created an interesting place to play...

dancinbelle
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Posts: 32
(10/24/06 10:13 am)
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New Post paths My biggest problem with Tom Sawyer's Island is that it's really easy to get hoplessly lost! All of these other ideas also seem to have that same "how do I get out?" feel to them. At least give it some directions, like some signs!! The area has a lot of potential. If/When they do renovate it, will they put a giant wall up or something? It'll be really noisy, not to mention looks.

Holly3216
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Posts: 121
(10/24/06 5:05 pm)
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New Post Re: paths True... A lot of the time I've been on that island (the one at WDW at least), it's been spent going "How do I get there from here?"... Well... that, and... when I was really young, my friend and I spent time jumping out from behind the stalagmites in the caves and scaring people half-to-death... Yeah... I shouldn't admit that...

I would imagine the island at Disneyland is full of meandering paths too... signs would definitely help...

cloudboy123
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Posts: 13
(10/24/06 9:08 pm)
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New Post Re: paths I was thinking that is one of the sttractions of something like that - to be totally immersed in an area - kind of like a giant maze. Agreed, you may want some kind of signage for people who are really in a rish, but the whole thing about an attraction like this is exploring and finding. Every time you go back, there's something new to find.

dancinbelle
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Posts: 34
(10/25/06 4:05 am)
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New Post lost People get lost enough in the parks, let alone a single island! Maybe they should have a special map just for the island. Has anyone seen the Sing-Along Songs that's set in Disneyland:lol Surprised ? It has some really nice shots of the park.

RE: Lost
Huh. I guese I better visit the Tom Sawyers Island in Orlando. The one in Anahiem is more modest and, if my memory serves me correctly, nearly impossible to get lost in.

dancinbelle
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Posts: 36
(10/27/06 4:07 am)
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New Post well.... I seem to remember it being HUGE, bu then again, I was little. Maybe that's intentional. If so, it works rather well. Is there a Tom Sawyer's Island in Tokyo or Hong Kong, because there isn't one in Paris, the island is actually Thunder Mesa Railroad.
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DancinBelle



Joined: 30 Jul 2007
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Location: Virginia

PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2007 7:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, they've finally done it. The video link on this website shows "Pirates Lair", the Pirates of the Caribbean section of Tom Sawyer's Island.

http://destinations.disney.go.com/parksandresorts/pirates/index
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admin
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 14, 2007 9:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think a pirates theme actually fits with Tom Sawyer. After all, the whole story about Injun Joe was definitely a type of river pirate.
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DancinBelle



Joined: 30 Jul 2007
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Location: Virginia

PostPosted: Wed Nov 14, 2007 8:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here are some clearer pictures of what they've done. I think it looks pretty neat!

http://www.laughingplace.com/Lotion-View-405-1.asp
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