Epcot has a very important birthday coming up! In 2022 Epcot turns 40! Epcot has been going through a major multi-year transformation. Disney’s goal is to WOW guests with new experiences while keeping true to the original vision of the park. Let’s check out what’s to come in the near future, 9 to be exact!
New Park Entrance
Coming and going in Epcot will look very different! Changes are coming to the Epcot main entrance. The plaza will welcome guests with new pathways, sweeping green spaces and a newly reimagined fountain. This new design will be a throwback to the original park entrance with fresh takes on classic elements.
First-of-its-Kind Play Pavilion
There are plans for a play pavilion that will be unlike anything you’ve ever seen at the park. It is described as an immersive and interactive ‘city’ where you can explore, create, and interact with some of your favorite Disney characters. This new city will come to life under the dome of the un-named pavilion previously known as Wonders of Life. These fun, hands-on activities and engaging entertainment are set to open just in time for the 50th anniversary of Walt Disney World Resort in 2021!
4 New Films Set to Debut at 2020 Epcot Festival of the Arts
- Beauty & The Beast Sing-Along – The France Pavilion in World Showcase will be getting a brand new “Beauty and the Beast Sing-Along”, created by Don Hahn, producer of the animated and live-action “Beauty and the Beast” films. This new show will not replace Impressions de France (which keeps its place in Guinness World Records as the longest-running daily screened film in the world) but will be run in the same theater at alternating times.
- Seamless China Circle-Vision – The China pavilion will be home to the first-ever seamless, digital Circle-Vision 360 show. Disney’s teams took their newly developed next-generation digital camera system on the road to film this brand new show. This is set to replace the current Reflections of China attraction. Reportedly, this film will also be installed at Shanghai Disneyland in the near future.
- Awesome Planet – “Awesome Planet,” will showcase the spectacular beauty, diversity, and enormous story of our earth. The film will be shown in the old Harvest Theater, which housed the Circle of Life: An Environmental Fable film, which closed in February 2018 after a 22-year run. There will be spectacular nature photography as well as immersive in-theater effects. The space sequences are created by none other than Industrial Light & Magic (which provided the cinematic foundation for the Star Wars franchise). “Awesome Planet” will deliver an environmental message that will stay with Epcot visitors long after they return home.
- New O Canada – Circle-Vision film in the Canada pavilion will also be updated. No other details have been released yet.
All 4 of these film updates will debut in January 2020. At the same time as the 4th annual Epcot International Festival of the Arts. As well as these films are set to stay after the festival ends as permanent additions of the reimagined Epcot.
Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure
The park’s renovation also includes Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure! In the France Pavilion, you will virtually shrink to the size of French cuisine’s most famous rat! As Remy, you will scurry to safety across the kitchen of Gusteau’s legendary Parisian restaurant. This fun new attraction is set to open just in time for the 50th anniversary of Walt Disney World Resort in 2021!
Authentic Crêperie in France Pavilion at Epcot
Scheduled to be built in an all-new location near Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure attraction, the new crêperie will feature the cuisine of celebrity chef Jérôme Bocuse. He is the mastermind behind the pavilion’s Chefs de France brasserie and its celebration of gourmet cuisine, Monsieur Paul.
The menu is inspired by the Brittany region of France. The new location will offer table service dining as well as a quick-service stop. You will be able to live out your French dreams by enjoying savory crepes called galettes and sweet crepes. This new crêperie is set to open just in time for the 50th anniversary of Walt Disney World Resort in 2021!
Epcot Nighttime Spectaculars
We are saying goodbye to “IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth” at Epcot on September 30, 2019, and hello two new nighttime spectaculars as part of the park’s multi-year transformation.
Debuting October 1, 2019, “Epcot Forever” will be an all-new, limited-time spectacle of fireworks, music, lighting, lasers and choreographed, special effects kites. The show will take us on a journey through the past, present, and future of Epcot. Featuring songs that paint a colorful picture of the park, this nighttime extravaganza will offer both a trip down memory lane and a look towards the future.
“Epcot Forever” will continue into 2020 when the next epic nighttime extravaganza makes its debut. This new show will celebrate how Disney music inspires people around the world. It will also feature massive floating set pieces, custom-built LED panels, choreographed moving fountains, lights, pyrotechnics, and lasers.
“Guardians of the Galaxy” Attraction
Details have been released about this new innovative ride system planning to bring “Guardians of the Galaxy” inspired attraction to life at Epcot.
According to Disney Parks, Experiences and Consumer Products Chairman Bob Chapek, building an adventure this big will require a ride system and ride vehicles, unlike anything our guests have experienced before. Guests will encounter a one-of-a-kind storytelling coaster that connects the adventure of a storyline with the thrills of a coaster.
“On most coasters, the vehicles point straight ahead throughout the ride,” Bob explained. “But on this attraction, each individual cab will be programmed to direct your eye to the story happening around you. That means instead of whizzing by the action, you’ll be fully immersed in the story from the minute you launch.”
The attraction will be one of the world’s longest enclosed roller coasters when it opens in Future World at Epcot. Earlier this year, 960 trucks’ worth of concrete poured the foundation of this mammoth attraction. This will all be housed inside a building so large that the volume of four Spaceship Earth attractions could fit inside it! The attraction will open in time for the 50th anniversary of Walt Disney World Resort in 2021.
Space-Themed Restaurant Lands in Future World at Epcot
This one-of-a-kind, space-themed restaurant will be built in a newly developed area located between the park’s Mission: SPACE and Test Track attractions.
During meals, you will travel to space for an amazing dining experience in the stars. The new restaurant will be operated by the Patina Restaurant Group, led by Nick Valenti, which operates several other restaurants around Walt Disney World Resort, including Tutto Italia and Via Napoli.
With so many changes to Epcot happening in the next few years, Disney is giving you an opportunity to preview what is coming.
The Experience Center will be located in the Odyssey Events Pavilion (which is frequently used as the Festival Center during). Here you will get a chance to see and explore (through interactive exhibits) the future of Epcot. Look for the new Experience Center to be open sometime in mid to late 2019.
With so much change happening to Epcot you will for sure what to experience all of it.
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Photo Credit: Disney Parks Blog
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