Expected D23 Disney Parks Announcments

Welcome to a special Thursday edition of the Weekly Rumor Update. Because of D23 starting tomorrow we are going to be bringing you the rumor update today instead so we can better bring you coverage of any and all announcements at the expo throughout the weekend. The Disney Photo of the Week and Weekly Disney Quiz series will be taking a hiatus so that we can bring you the best coverage of the expo.

The format of this update is also going to be a bit different. This week we are sorting all rumors currently circulating into categories of the likelihood of being announced this weekend. The categories will be: Almost Definite, Likely, Wildcard, and Not Gonna Happen. This is just a prediction based on the strength of the rumors and is by no means going to be entirely accurate. At the last D23, people were sure Brazil would be announced for the World Showcase and it wasn't. Things can change up until the last minute and sources were saying just weeks ago that projects were still being rearranged in the timeline.

Almost Definite

Galaxy's Edge Information

There is no doubt Galaxy's Edge will be mentioned in the Parks panel. This will likely involve one of two announcements. Either the second ride in the land or the addition of the table service restaurant to the land that was cut from the land.

Epcot Spine Project

This was already kind of announced in this mysterious piece of concept art, as well as by numerous already announced closings happening in the park starting in just a few weeks. But that only tells us what we're losing. Expect announcements for what is replacing the Innoventions buildings, including a meet and greet building, a new restaurant, a new Starbucks, a permanent festival center, and maybe a few surprises. Other additions could include new fountains and a beer garden although these are not as definitive. As part of this expect the opening date for the Epcot Experience Center, which will serve the same purpose the Blue Sky Cellar did at Disney California Adventure during its transformation.

Walt Disney World 50th Marketing Campaign

This has been a well-established rumor for years and it will likely be confirmed this weekend. The rumored marketing campaign is that Disney will promote 50 additions to the parks for 50 years. Some will be major, like the already announced Tron ride, but others will be minor additions to preexisting attractions. Things that could be included in this are the Hatbox Ghost being added to the Haunted Mansion, the explosive finale to Big Thunder, and Disney characters being added to It's a Small World (like Disneyland).

Brazil World Showcase Pavilion

Am I aware I put this as an example of a previous last-minute D23 cancelation? Yes. But it once again appears it is going to be announced, but on a smaller scale without an attraction.

Marvel Land Info

Considering there is an entire exhibit based on Epcot and Marvel in the Disney Parks it seems pretty safe to assume we will get more info on the Marvel lands in Hong Kong Disneyland and Disney California Adventure. This will likely center on the Spiderman ride and the Iron Man roller coaster, although I wouldn't rule out some blue sky concept art for the rumored E-Ticket coming to all three Marvel lands currently under construction around the world.


UK Ride

This has been rumored for a while, but things have been slowing down for this rumor as of the last couple of months. It turned from a dark ride to a spinner, with many different IPs being proposed before solidifying on Mary Poppins, and now it isn't as likely to happen at all. The ride is still likely, especially with a need for new rides in Epcot as a lot closes, but it is far from a definite announcement.

Guardians Coaster Information

This ride is still far out, but we could see some information announced about it this weekend. At the moment we know almost nothing about the ride experience, with a rumored new spinning coaster design and backward launch apparently being a part of the ride path. We could see these features announced or something to do with the story like the attractions name.

Mystery Animal Kingdom Project

New sources are stating something was greenlit for Disney's Animal Kingdom. A specific project was not specified but speculation was one of three projects, a Dinoland upgrade (least likely), the Zootopia land from Shanghai Disneyland, or a Jungle Book ride featuring the technology from Shanghai's Pirates of the Caribbean. It is also possible Zootopia could be the Dinoland replacement, but not definite.


Enchanted Tiki Room Under New Management From Above

Under New Management 2.0

Despite a partial denial from Disney Parks Blog, this could still be an announcement this weekend. The rumor here is that Moana would join the Tiki Birds, similar to how Iago and Zazu previously did. The denial of this rumor included a part about how this ride continued to change over the years, which is why this rumor is still in the possible category. This wouldn't be something to expect, but don't be surprised if it shows up.

Seasonal Bear Jamboree

Despite Disney announcing definitively that this ride is here to stay, it is still possible there could be some changes. Rumors persist that either the old seasonal versions of the ride, Vacation Hoedown and Christmas Special, could return or an all-new seasonal version could be created for the bears to celebrate the 50th anniversary of this opening day attraction. As this would be a significant new addition to a non-IP attraction I would not put this as something that I would expect to be announced, but it could show up as one of the 50 additions for the promotion.

Imagination Version 4

This was rumored to be one of the later stage changes coming as a part of the reimagining of Future World. But over the last month apparently projects got switched and this is now a potential announcement for D23. We don't even know what it will be, but apparently, Figment is still a part of at least one of the proposals.

New International Disneyland

There have been rumblings Disney is seeking out a new international Disneyland Resort after the success of Shanghai Disneyland. This is likely still in the early stages, but if it is further along than I think it is we could see some kind of announcement. The rumored location is somewhere in Asia, possibly India.

Not Gonna Happen

Toy Story Replacing Country Bear Jamboree

Disney shut this rumor down. It's NOT happening.

Lion King Anything

That rumor from a while ago about a Lion King dark ride in Disney's Animal Kingdom was completely baseless and mainly based on people misinterpreting the permits for the parks Club 33.