As we reported yesterday, there is a prominent booth at the D23 Expo this weekend which will remain under cover until after today’s arena presentation covering upcoming live action films including Brad Bird’s Tomorrowland.
‘Well this is a shocker,’ said absolutely nobody when it came to Disney’s D23 Expo and Brad Bird’s Tomorrowland project’s presence there. Attendees of the D23 Expo which kicks off today will no doubt notice the massive translucently-curtained booth that shamelessly advertises which upcoming Disney project it’s there to support.
But attendees won’t be able to visit and explore it — at least not until after the Walt Disney Studios live action presentation on Saturday, in which the film will be talked about and teased by Bird who is also slated to appear at the Expo’s Dream Store for an appearance/signing as well.
Actress Britt Robertson (Under the Dome, Delivery Man) has been cast in a lead role in Disney’s TOMORROWLAND.
In the film, a high school girl with an unconventional understanding of technology is launched on a journey to reclaim her future.
The film, in theaters December 12, 2014, is being directed by Brad Bird, produced by Damon Lindelof and Brad Bird, and written by Damon Lindelof, Brad Bird and Jeff Jenson.
Robertson joins a cast that already includes George Clooney, Hugh Laurie, Raffey Cassidy and Thomas Robinson.
D23 Expo 2013 will celebrate its grand opening with a welcome from Disney Chairman and CEO Bob Iger followed by the first of two arena presentations hosted by The Walt Disney Studios at the Anaheim Convention Center. On Friday, August 9, The Walt Disney Studios will surprise and delight fans with sneak peeks of the incredible slate of upcoming animated films from Walt Disney Animation Studios, Pixar Animation Studios, and Disneytoon Studios, hosted by Chief Creative Officer John Lasseter. Then, on Saturday, August 10, Walt Disney Studios Chairman Alan Horn will host The Walt Disney Studios live action arena presentation which will pull back the curtain on upcoming releases from Disney Live Action and Marvel Studios. Both presentations will feature exclusive clips and behind-the-scenes footage, filmmaker discussions, and surprise celebrity appearances.
There’s no telling how the two are connected just yet, but for those who just can’t wait any longer, we’d like to introduce you to Wallace, the newest person of intrigue in Disney’s alternate reality game (ARG), ‘The Optimist.’
We’ve already meat Amelia (@storyorbit) who is on a quest via Twitter and her blog at storyorbit.com to learn more about her grandfather Carlos and the stories he would regale her with about his experiences with Walt Disney and the 1964-65 World’s Fair in New York City and his short story, ‘Orbit’s Story’ which was possibly optioned for a film and theme park rights.
Walt Disney Studios has made several announcements regarding its upcoming film slate:
- Planes 2: Fire and Rescue in 3D is slated for release on July 18, 2014
- Brad Bird’s Tomorrowland has been re-scheduled for December 12, 2014 (up from December 19)
- Two ‘Untitled’ films from Marvel Studios have been slated for May 6, 2016 and May 5, 2017
- The Muppets… Again has been renamed to Muppets Most Wanted
- Saving Mr. Banks opens for limited release on December 13, 2013. Wide release remains December 20, 2013
We received a few new updates from Walt Disney World over the past week or so regarding upcoming refurbishments and have new additions as well as several date revisions. While we recommend verifying all of the changes by visiting our ReSearch page, here are some of the highlights:
- Main Street Bakery — which is being converted over to the Magic Kingdom’s Starbucks location — is now slated to open on June 19, 2013. This is actually the second delay we have seen before (it was initially slated to open on May 18, then was pushed back to May 28).
The Walt Disney Studios has announced that its live-action release previously known as 1952 will be titled Tomorrowland. The film will be released domestically on December 19, 2014. George Clooney (The Descendants) is set to star.
Tomorrowland is written by Damon Lindelof and Brad Bird from a concept by Lindelof and Jeff Jensen. Lindelof (Star Trek, Lost, Prometheus) will produce and Bird (The Incredibles, Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol) will produce and direct.
Oriental Land Company, owner and operator of Tokyo Disneyland, has announced that it will be following in the footsteps of the Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resorts and will be updating its ‘Star Tours’ attraction in Tomorrowland. With an estimated cost of 7 billion yen (approximately $91 million US), ‘Star Tours: The Adventure Continues’ is expected to open in spring 2013.
From the initial announcement, it does not appear that the attraction will differ from that of the recent makeover at the Disneyland and Disney’s Hollywood Studios theme park. Just yesterday, the attraction redo was recognized by the Themed Entertainment Association (TEA) and will receive a Thea Award for its refresh.
In addition to announcing the personal appearance of R2-MK at Star Wars Weekends this year, Disney Parks has also confirmed closure dates for the Star Tours attraction at both the Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts.
As we already advised back in March, the attraction is scheduled to close on September 8 with an expected re-opening date of May 20, 2011 in Orlando while the Anaheim version will close much earlier than originally anticipated on July 27 with an expected re-opening date of May 10, 2011.