Head salesman first to be removed from the Jungle Cruise as rework gets underway

9 days ago in "Jungle Cruise"

Posted: Monday April 5, 2021 8:46am ET by WDWMAGIC Staff

Work is now officially underway on the changes to the Jungle Cruise at Magic Kingdom, with "head salesman" Trader Sam being the first to go.

Imagineer Zach Riddley posted over the weekend that guests may start to notice some "monkey business along the river," and right on cue, we see the first signs of that today. Obviously sales have been shrinking for Trader Sam over the past decades, so his removal is hardly a surprise.

The changes and additions will be incorporated in phases over the next couple of months, and it will not result in any closure of the ride.

Learn more about the upcoming changes to the Jungle Cruise.

Disney announced back in January 2021 that it plans to update the Jungle Cruise with new additions to add "more humor, wildlife and skipper heart – and also reflect and value the diversity of the world around us."

Disney has not yet offered a timeline of when the changes will be completed, but has indicated that it will be coming "later this year."

Discuss on the Forums
View all comments →

SorcererMC4 days ago

I fully admit that I probably should have stopped reading or otherwise bothering with this thread right here. https://forums.wdwmagic.com/threads/jungle-cruise-re-imagining.926670/post-7687541 ETA: IMO one of the reasons that Trader Sam has such as a memorable impact is because he is towards the end of the ride, and that this is by design.

Rich Brownn4 days ago

You are correct. Part of the original spiel would be telling the "crew" which river you had just entered. The "animals" were supposed to be in a specific region (Butterflies were "Amazons of the Amazon", the Indian elephants to seperate them from the previous etc.) And every skipper created their own personality (and back then, different versions of the spiel). (heck, back then we were even allowed to make our straw hats unique - mine was frayed).

PrinceCharming6174 days ago

I got to admit it... I like the reimagining ideas. Except for getting rid of Trader Sam of course. I think it makes perfect sense with the storyline to put in more animals.

Touchdown4 days ago

I was replying to a poster who claimed the JC took place in a fictitious place, I was pointing out that was not true but instead the Cruise takes place (for lack of a better word) romanticized version of real places.

GimpYancIent4 days ago

Yep, sounds serious and realistic to me. I think the CM skippers made the show, some were more comedic and into their roles than others, but a good time was had by all.

Touchdown4 days ago

Every time Ive ridden the Jungle Cruise I was told I was traveling on the Amazon, Nile, Congo, and Mekong rivers through the jungles of South America, Africa and Cambodia but maybe Im misremembering A spiel I’ve heard dozens of time 🤷‍♂️

GimpYancIent4 days ago

Interesting how folks are working so hard to place realism and actual geographic locations, actual flora, fauna, animals and peoples to an amusement ride about a jungle river cruise on a fictitious jungle river, in a fictitious jungle at a fictitious geographic location. I really never paid much mind to Trader Sam until following this thread. It appears the Trader Sam character had much more impact than I ever thought possible.

Disone4 days ago

Jungle snooze?

SorcererMC4 days ago

Seems nebulous.

999th Happy Haunt4 days ago

Clearly Trader Sam is Adventurelandian, come on guys

ppete19754 days ago

I think people forget what jungle cruise should be.... as we keep thinking of things as adults. Id remove all the people so thats out of the way. And go back to what it originally was which was amazing (for the time)AAs. Keep it geared towards KIDS and stop treating it in the same class as a more adult ride. If youre 6 years old and you see the AAs they are amazing as is the jungle. Keep that emotion. Thats what i love now as an adult when i ride JC or POC or HM, if i was riding them the first time id think.. wow thats pretty entertaining and the theming is nice. But since i rode these as a kid.. I am 8 years old when i ride them now. When i went back after 20 years i hadnt kept up with Disney (i thought WOM was still in epcot) i was excited to spend time with family but i didnt really care about disney that much. A little magic came back when i got on the magical express and then to port orleans... but it wasnt a huge deal. Until i saw the castle.... I was now 8 years old and i might have shed a tear. Since then ive been on this message board, bought way too much disney stuff, become.. that disney guy at work.. and have been back once and going back next year. Thats what Jungle cruise needs to be ... joy and wonderment for the kids.. and memories that transform them back when they are grown

Sharon&Susan4 days ago

It's weird that the DL Trader Sam is supposed to be African when the previous two scenes are based on South American animals (though to be fair those got added long after Trader Sam), while at WDW he's South American and appears just after the big finale which consists of African animals.

Brer Oswald4 days ago

The DL version is astronomical worse (IMO) because they aren’t even antagonizing cartoons. It’s straight up “realistic” looking humans.

SorcererMC4 days ago

If you didn't learn the relevant geography, then someone failed you.