BREAKING: New Castle Projection Show Coming to Magic Kingdom

Disney Parks Blog: Today we’re happy to announce that a new nighttime projection show, “Once Upon a Time,” will debut at Magic Kingdom Park on November 4.

In this new show, Mrs. Potts from “Beauty and the Beast” shares bedtime stories with Chip, taking them (and all of us) on a magical trip through the most adventurous scenes from favorite Disney films like “Cinderella,” “Peter Pan,” “Alice in Wonderland” and “The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh.”

Scenes that are expected to be guest-favorites include a flight with Peter Pan from London to Never Land, the Mad Hatter’s whimsical tea party, and a daring duel between Gaston and Beast. Mrs. Potts and Chip end their bedtime story with a grand finale that includes appearances by characters from even more Disney films.

The show, which was inspired by one of a similar name at Tokyo Disneyland Park, uses projection mapping technology to cover every nook and cranny of Cinderella Castle in vibrant images that appear almost three-dimensional.

“Once Upon A Time” will replace the current “Celebrate the Magic” projection show, which will end its run on November 3. Check your My Disney Experience app for times and more information.

One of my favorite shows at Walt Disney World is “Celebrate the Magic” at Magic Kingdom. I remember the first time we saw the show—it was by accident. We happened to grab a spot for Wishes and then the lights dimmed. Suddenly, the castle transformed into one giant-sized screen. The colors and sights were so vivid and it all looked real! My favorite part was Wreck-It Ralph. The castle was wrapped in video-game-style bricks from the Wreck-It Ralph movie, then demolished by Ralph, himself.


The castle wrapped in Wreck-It Ralph themed bricks during Celebrate the Magic.

I always thought that this projection technology was so “Disney” in that it captured the very magic we’ve grown accustomed to as guests. I mean, one second you’re looking at Cinderella Castle, the next second you’re standing eye-to-eye with the Cheshire Cat or watching your favorite scene from the Lion King.

With “Jingle Bell, Jingle Bam,” the “Once Upon a Time” show and the use of projectors on the Tree of Life, it appears that Disney is putting a real emphasis on the projection technology. It really is pretty incredible what they can do with the projectors. They even introduce the technology a bit during the Holiday Wishes fireworks show, turning Cinderella Castle into a giant gingerbread house.

It’ll be interesting to see how Disney continues to use this technology moving forward. I’d assume the projectors are only effective at night (and are probably extremely expensive to run,) however, I immediately think of the 25th Anniversary when Disney turned Cinderella Castle into a giant pink cake. They can easily accomplish this with the projectors. Just imagine a nighttime show for the 50th anniversary in which the castle becomes a giant cake and Mickey is present to “blow out the candles.”



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