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Angry the Clown

Disneyland/World and Universal parks discussion thread (where the magic never ends... until a ride you loved is knocked down and replaced with something lame)

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On 8/18/2019 at 3:30 PM, Angry the Clown said:

Whenever I go I’m telling them IKEA is my home planet. 

 

Just throw an apostrophe in there. I'kea. Done.

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Soooo, should we talk about that absolutely wild Medium article about the Al lutz/Iger stuff, and yesterday’s news of a former Disney accountant claiming that the company has been cooking the books for years to show exaggerated Parks/Resorts revenue to the tune of billions of dollars? 

 

The Medium article I am struggling to believe. It’s absolutely insane.

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Ok, I made a reasonable attempt at understanding that Medium article.  What they hell are they saying?

 

 

Carlos.

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That basically the Disney fan community was manipulated as a means to strengthen a sinister Iger plot to oust Eisner and replace him. The finer details of it are just batshit insanity I just can’t bring myself to believe.

 

Whether that story and the accountant’s whistleblowing story are true or not, there’s perhaps a story in itself with regards to why both appear to be co-ordinated hit jobs on the company ahead of D23.

 

 

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5 hours ago, Carlucci said:

Ok, I made a reasonable attempt at understanding that Medium article.  What they hell are they saying?

 

 

Carlos.

 

To get even more specific, popular Disney blogger and insider, Al Lutz, who wrote scathing articles about Disney (primarily Disneyland) , Eisner and Park Executives in the early 2000s was not who you think he was. 

 

The claim is that Iger and his PR person (Zenia Mucha) co-opted the Blog with a ghostwriter (Troy Porter) who was working for Disney (and Iger specifically I guess) who had “inside” information that would expose the Disney Company and portray it as failing and poorly run. 

 

These articles written by “Al”, and the sentiment they fostered were then used by the Save Disney campaign, headed by Roy Disney, to get Eisner removed from Disney, and Iger promoted. 

 

Once that happened, Al all but retired from writing due to having Parkinson’s, having only returned recently to blast Disney for slashing the budget of Galaxy’s Edge. Presumably this was done in the same manner so that Iger can pin its “failure” on Bob Chapek (head of Disney Parks and more) and fire him without taking any of the blame. 

 

What’s true? Who knows. Probably not much of it, but there are too many “lies”, untruths and people with axes to grind in all of this to know what is what. Assuming that Al did write his articles, the person with the least to do with any of this is Al Lutz. 

 

Here is what I can gather about the parties involved:

 

Gary Snyder - The author is a well known Disney insider who has provided reliable leaks in the past, but seems to have a vendetta on Disney and has had articles he has written for sites like Huffington Post taken down (due to inaccuracies or Disney pressure depending on who you ask). The timing of this article right before D23 is probably not a coincidence. 

 

Michael Snyder - Revealed to be a well known poster in the Disney fan community and brother of Gary. Seems to be disgruntled with the Disney fan community and could be linked to the Redstone Family, who are majority shareholders in CBS/Viacom. Michael may have helped with authoring this article. 

 

Dusty Sage - The current CEO of MiceChat where Al’s articles are posted. Apparently his ex husband is involved with this article and has an axe to grind with Dusty and MiceChat. 

 

MiceChat have refuted this story, but have done it by attacking the people involved, versus stating any facts. 

 

Troy Porter - Apparently an insider who posts as TP2000 and has written rumour articles with a similar style to Al’s. He has come out and stated that the article is false and that he is not Troy Porter. Other information has come out in archived forum posts and information from a MiceChat moderator that he is someone named Troy Porter. TP2000 He claims TP stands for Theme Park and his first name is Thor. 

 

Kevin Yee - While not really involved with this at all, he co-founded MiceAge (now MiceChat) with Al. He has mostly disappeared from what I can tell, but stated on the WDW Magic forums that the article is not true, and that Al wrote all of his articles with numerous sources of information. This seems to be the strongest rebuttal. 

 

All of this is from information I have gathered since this morning. Besides a vague tweet I saw, Angry’s post was the first I had heard about this. Gary, Michael and TP2000/Troy Porter are not anyone I had any familiarity with before today. 

 

WDW Magic’s forums are just too busy to be able to keep tabs on everything going on with this (and it’s also spread across 2 threads). It would be nice if someone writes a synopsis of of what’s going on, any history with the characters involved, and any relevant posts with direct information regarding this. 

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I couldn’t get through all of the WDWMagic thread on it. My head began to hurt. It was hard enough following the back and forth over the weekend on Twitter (particularly as, outside of some Imagineers, I don’t follow that many ‘DisTwitter’ people). 

 

There’s also a whole debate over why Al would come out of the woodwork to write one article putting down Galaxy’s Edge and, more specifically, putting so much of the blame on Chapek, and whether there’s now anything to the timing of that shortly preceding the former accountant (seemingly with an with an axe to grind) claiming Parks & Resorts has been exploiting a loophole that’s allowed them to grossly exaggerate their revenue. 

 

It's all a little...

 

giphy.gif

 

 

I will say this though. Until this past week I had not even thought about the name Al Lutz or thought much about MiceChat in general since the ancient 'SaveDisney' days when everyone was shitting on Eisner. If nothing else all this has been a major blast from the past.

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Hah.

 

Unrelated, but some now seem to be of then opinion DCA and Disney Studios Paris are in trouble with their Marvel/Spider-man attractions in light of Spider-man MCU talks between Sony and Disney breaking down.

 

To my mind that would surely be a separate licensing agreement already cared for, and I wouldn’t be surprised if the movie cast had already recorded whatever involvement the attraction requires of them. I’d be dumbfounded if the rides are not safe.

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Ya, I don’t see how those deals would be connected.

 

What could be an issue could be if they do use Tom Holland and other cast members from the current movies, and then Spidey is recast (again). They might not want the old Spidey in their ride for long. 

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Disney just needs to open the checkbook (again) and buy Spidey back. Perhaps it would be best to wait for the next movie in the event that it tanks and Sony’s price tag drops, but there’s no other way that this ends for good.

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28 minutes ago, Graeme said:

What could be an issue could be if they do use Tom Holland and other cast members from the current movies, and then Spidey is recast (again). They might not want the old Spidey in their ride for long. 

 

Yeah. I forget what podcast it was I was listening to, I think Jim Hill, where a salient point was made that the Universal Spidey attraction arguably benefits greatly on account of not being bound to ever evolving movies that go in and out fashion or undergo casting changes. It’s the kind of stuff that will make a lot of Disney’s current Star Wars and Marvel rides look stale in ten years time and require expensive changes down the road.

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2 hours ago, Brandon H said:

Disney just needs to open the checkbook (again) and buy Spidey back. Perhaps it would be best to wait for the next movie in the event that it tanks and Sony’s price tag drops, but there’s no other way that this ends for good.

 

I think they’ll reach an agreement before the next movie goes into production to be honest. Right now I am enjoying the Hollywood politics of it all. As I’ve written elsewhere, Sony are right to stand their ground here if the demands Disney were asking for are to be believed. There’s much I love about Disney, but I’ve never disliked then more on a corporate level than I do lately.

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https://partners.disney.com/one-day-at-disney

 

The secret Disney Company project announced at the media event is a documentary series about people who work for Disney that will be available on Disney+. 

 

People are expectedly losing their shit because it wasn’t the huge, amazing announcement they were “lead” to believe. 

 

Personally, I’m pretty happy with this announcement since it is actually something I’m interested in. It’s not a new theme park, but I never once believed it would be, but it’s more interesting than Disney going green, or announcing they’ve bought a new island in the Bahamas for their cruises (which wasn’t a secret).   

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Avengers Lands will be called “Avengers Campus”. 

 

Epcot is getting a Moana attraction. 

 

 

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Star Wars Hotel model and name details.

 

Sorry, I don’t know how or if I can post these without the previous tweet in the thread.... so enjoy the giant Pretzel. 

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Nothing says Futureworld like Moana! 🙂 I think we can be sure that name is going. Some of the text is apparently referring to pavilions as “neighbourhoods.” I’d really like it if the EPCOT Center name rumour was true.

 

New park logo is 👍

 

 

New and yet at the same time capturing the spirit of the 80s logo by changing the C ever so slightly 😀. So happy as after the Hollywood Studios logo debacle I was worried what we’d get here.

 

Likewise, kudos to the art department for the new pavilion logos:

 

 

 

These posters below are all REALLY nice. Ugh... I’d take A5 prints of all the ones for the old attractions.

 

 

 

 

 

‘Revealing Sunday’ is probably Brazil pavilion. What kind of IP themed ride can Chapek possibly stuff in there though?

 

 

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4 hours ago, Graeme said:

https://partners.disney.com/one-day-at-disney

 

The secret Disney Company project announced at the media event is a documentary series about people who work for Disney that will be available on Disney+. 

 

People are expectedly losing their shit because it wasn’t the huge, amazing announcement they were “lead” to believe. 

 

Personally, I’m pretty happy with this announcement since it is actually something I’m interested in. It’s not a new theme park, but I never once believed it would be, but it’s more interesting than Disney going green, or announcing they’ve bought a new island in the Bahamas for their cruises (which wasn’t a secret).   

 

I could have a sworn the staff documentary was mentioned way back at the Disney+ reveal. Either way I’m all for more documentary and parks related content on the service (it’s the main reason I will subscribe). I do gnash my teeth over this one slightly though given how Disney still doesn’t pay its cast members a fair wage. Part of me feels this one is a cynical move to counteract bad press.

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4 hours ago, Graeme said:

 

Epcot Concept Art. 

 

Entrance really matches up rather nicely with the original. More green is good (did they axe the beer garden? I haven’t heard it mentioned yet. Hope so). 

 

I’m at odds with the removal of Communicore/Innoventions West. It’s kind of half-arsed. Maybe from ground level it won’t look so weird.

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Not great camerawork, but here’s a video of the video wall playing the in Epcot exhibit highlighting many of changes coming to Epcot. It’s a surprising 10 minutes in length. 

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I just watched that funnily enough. I like what is apparently the Festival Centre structure (big round glass building with green space on the roof). That should move a lot of small stalls off the pathways into a dedicated space during the, seemingly now never ending, festival periods.

 

Do you think they intend to make Spaceship Earth sparkle like that? I’d be down with it.

 

 

The UK pavilion poster has White Rabbit and Mary Poppins on it. Mexico also features Miguel front and centre. I wonder if there are some hints of changes/additions on the country posters? A Coco puppet show has been mentioned before. A Poppins darkride was rumoured, a rumour which then shifted to note that it was downgraded to a carousel after the recent film didn’t perform to Disney’s expectations. Could we get that and an Epcot take on DLP’s Alice hedge maze maybe?

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