How A New President Is Added To The Hall of Presidents

Hall of Presidents Exterior Magic Kingdom Walt Disney World

As a new president is almost certainly coming to the Hall of Presidents following the election of Joe Biden after he received the popular vote and over 270 electoral college votes, we are taking a look at the process that will now take place to add a new president to the Walt Disney World attraction.

The show tells a patriotic story about America featuring speeches by multiple animatronic presidents and ending with all the presidents appearing onstage in audio-animatronic form.

New presidents have been added ever since the show opened alongside the Magic Kingdom, but they only began to speak with Bill Clinton, a tradition that has continued ever since. This does however has complicated the process of updating the attraction.

Jimmy Carter Portrait in Hall of Presidents Lobby Disney World

Typically, as has happened with the last two presidents, the attraction is closed sometime between the election and inauguration day for the change. Reportedly Disney begins construction of the animatronic of whichever candidate is ahead in the polls when it is certain there will be a new president, especially when neither candidate is seeking reelection and there will definitely be a new occupant in the office. As Joe Biden defeated an incumbent, it is unclear if Disney started work on an animatronic yet.

There are only a few speaking presidents in the Hall of Presidents, so what normally happens is the skin for the new president is put onto the one animatronic reserved for the current occupant of the office. Meanwhile, the outgoing president is moved to a less prominent location in the attraction, with the skin being added to a less advanced animatronic elsewhere in the ride.

Disney also has to schedule a recording session with the new president, who writes a speech to be performed by the animatronic in the attraction. Disney has to approve the speech which then ends up in the show. This part may be complicated by the ongoing pandemic.

Hall of Presidents Poster Magic Kingdom Walt Disney World

The attraction will then reopen at some point in 2021 with the new president.

What we don't know is how much the show itself will change. Typically Disney overhauls the show every 8 years, following a two-term presidency, so we don't know how much the show itself will be updated given that Donald Trump only served one term, something incredibly uncommon in the United States.

George Washington Portrait Hall of Presidents Lobby Disney World

Disney fans have floated wanting changes for the attraction during the past several presidents, with the most common suggestion being to end the tradition of having the current president speak, given that it has led to significant protests of every president since Clinton inside the attraction.

We will keep you up to date on how this imminent refurbishment progresses over the coming months.