It’s an adventure out there! Let’s have a laugh or two as we float down the river of life. A DVC Duo favorite for a good laugh is the Jungle Cruise at the Magic Kingdom. One of the original opening day attractions, the Jungle Cruise is a Disney classic ironic deadpan comedy delivered by aspiring comedians/comediennes. You may even recognize a couple of them, Kevin Costner and Ron Ziegler (Nixon’s press secretary). No two trips through the great rivers of the world will ever be exactly the same. Soon it may be a new attraction all together. Wait what?! You heard me right; the hippos may be rocking the boats over at the Jungle Cruise. Let’s head out on a trek through what’s happening over at Disney’s Jungle Cruise.
Time for a history lesson! Let’s head back in time to when the Jungle Cruise was created, it was 1955 at Disneyland. A few years prior (1951), the blockbuster hit was The African Queen and Walt Disney has the idea of creating an attraction based on the movie. Originally, Walt wanted the attraction to use live animals. How amazing would that have been? When the attraction first opened, there were no puns, it wasn’t until later that the wisecracks were incorporated- thank goodness! Fast-forward to today, Disney just wrapped shooting for the live-action Jungle Cruise movie starring the world biggest movie star, Dwayne! We’re on a first-name basis, right Rock?
Thanks to Jim Hill at Jim Hill Media we got some great information on what could be cooking over at the Jungle Cruise. On The Disney Dish podcast Jim shared that Disney is planning on updating the Jungle Cruise to include scenes from the upcoming movie. Similar to what we have seen at Pirates of the Caribbean with Jack Sparrow and Captain Barbosa. Does this mean we may even see the first Rock animatronic? Now that will be a big animatronic!
This wouldn’t be the first time Disney looked to reimage the Jungle Cruise. Back in the 90’s Disney Imagineers created a new concept for Jungle Cruise themed around the movie George of the Jungle, however, they decided to hold off on the idea as they believed it would have hurt the release of the animated movie Tarzan. With George of the Jungle being a parody of Tarzan, that makes sense. The updates would have included things like the hippos pulling apart George’s luggage and maybe wearing some boxers, and the end of the ride having a live-action gorilla joking/scaring you. It would have great update to the attraction! The movie wasn’t the best but rumored scene changes to the ride would have made it a blast!
Passholder Insight: For the holiday season the Jungle Cruise transform into the Jingle Cruise as part of the holiday programming at the Magic Kingdom.
Like all Imagineering ideas they never get thrown away, just filed away for future use. How big is that file cabinet? Apparently, Disney is dusting off the George of the Jungle plans to see how they could use them as part of the reimaged Jungle Cruise with the Rock. We will have to wait for the movie to see how they relate. After seeing plenty of Rock movies in my day (yes, I’ve seen Rampage don’t judge), I’m guessing there will be plenty of similar jokes for fodder.
We won’t have to wait long to find out if Disney decides to re-theme the Jungle Cruise once the movie is released with opening day being July 24, 2020. It is rumored that the Jungle Cruise would shutdown in October of 2020 for the updates. All of this is contingent on the success of the movie. Based on the history of Rock movies and the success of Moana ($600 million) this will more than likely do well. Disney is definitely banking on its success as the Rock is signed for two more Jungle Cruise movies.
We’re excited for both the movie and the potential ride updates. Under one stipulation, they have to keep the thematics and light-hearted humor around the attraction. It’s what makes it so appealing! Are you excited for the movie and potential ride changes? Let us know below or on our Facebook Page!