VIDEO - See the helicopter film crew over the Magic Kingdom earlier today

Apr 28, 2014 in "Soarin'"

Posted: Monday April 28, 2014 4:!1pm EDT by WDWMAGIC Staff

We reported last week that a helicopter flyover of Epcot and the Magic Kingdom would be taking place, and we've got some video of the shoot in action.

The helicopter spent a good amount of time over various parts of the Magic Kingdom, at low altitude, and at times moving fairly quickly through the park. The camera module is clearly visible at the nose of the helicopter.

Although not confirmed, it is thought that the film crews are shooting new footage for an update to the Soarin' attraction at Epcot. Read more here.

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JediMasterMattSep 19, 2014

While there is some truth in the Anaheim = locals and Orlando = tourists, that trait doesn't significantly alter ride and attraction behavior as you would think. It's true that a higher percentage of Anaheim guests are less likely to spend as much in the park on food or souvenirs as guest in Orlando; but, attraction behavior is very similar. Anaheim locals are very passionate about their attractions. A well done attraction at either resort draws a crowd whether they've done it before or not. A local visiting DCA may not choose to ride Soarin' because they would rather do another attraction in the park instead of it. The quandary in EPCOT is that a guest has to ride Soarin' because there aren't enough viable alternatives. I'm nowhere near a local to Disneyland resort (I live in Imaginationland, which I get connecting flights to Anaheim through the Midwest); but, I am a fortunate enough to be frequent visitor to both Disney Parks resorts to tour them more like a local would (stay multiple days a couple times a year) and I can't pass up riding Soarin' at either destination. I'm not a big fan of basing attractions on screens; but, quality is quality. Soarin' is an E-ticket because of the sum of its parts. The screen is only a small part of its success. The visuals combined with the motion, simulated wind, scents and that glorious soundtrack are what makes it great. The only difference in my riding behavior of Soarin' in Anaheim versus Orlando is that I take advantage of the single rider lines and ease of getting a FastPass. I can fit it into my day around the rest of many other rides and attractions at DCA. At EPCOT, my day is planned around fitting Soarin' in due to the difficulties in getting a FastPass. Everything is planned around Soarin'. If anything, the logic of "the local has been there/done that" with DCA's Soarin' is actually more relevant to the stagnant state of attractions at EPCOT. It's not that they don't have attractions, they do. It's just the guests don't want to waste their time investing in riding them. Even with the high number of "once in a lifetime" tourists, the rest of the guest population at EPCOT isn't in line for Energy or Imagination because they don't know about it being an option. They choose not to ride it "again" because they already have done it. It's not worth their time. If you want to make EPCOT's Soarin' problem go away. Put 6 or so other high quality D+ and E-ticket attractions into the park that guests want to actually wait for - new or refurbished, it doesn't matter. It's quality that counts.

WikklerSep 17, 2014

Liked just because "Soaring". People in my party actually called it that when we went. :(

rct247Sep 03, 2014

Another difference between DCA and Epcot is that DCA has primarily return annual passholders as guests while Epcot is primarily 1st time international visitors or "once a year or longer" guests. The passholders have been there done that and can feel like they can skip a movie/ride that has been there since DCA's day one. The guests that visit Epcot are so gung-ho about that amazing "Soaring" ride.

hpyhnt 1000Sep 03, 2014

Quoting this again because it is exactly true. And you can carbon copy it across WDW (Midway Mania, Everest, etc.). Yeah, another Soarin' theater will be great and all, but spending that money on a proper refurbishment of Energy and/or Imagination would accomplish the same goal (reducing waits/hourly demand at Soarin') and make Epcot a stronger park overall. Somewhat overtime but in a similar vein, the same argument can be made in terms of dining. On the whole, WDW's in-park dining options are woefully inadequate given the number of guests that walk through the turnstiles on a yearly basis. Its a big reason why Be Our Guest is the huge mess that it is today.

Master YodaSep 03, 2014

This is exactly it. The factor that is radically different in the equation is demand, not capacity.

JediMasterMattSep 03, 2014

Comparing what you think should be an apple (EPCOT's Soarin') to another apple (DCA's Soarin' over California) seems like it should tell the story of why the wait times and therefore the popularity of one is different from the other; but, that simply doesn't tell the proper story and is more like an apple>orange comparison. When you try to compare and contrast these two rides, you need to compare and contrast the parks they are located in. The issue at hand is not the individual attraction capacity (number of riders per hour per attraction) as they are the same (or close enough due to the single rider factor in Cali). The issue at hand is the attraction capacity the entire park can handle and does handle (number of attractions x the individual attraction capacity). The Soarin' twins can be used as a case study to the REAL problem in Orlando in contrast to Anaheim - the number of attractions per park. It's the per park attraction capacity that is the heart of the Orlando problem. There simply aren't enough rides and attractions per park (esp attractions that guests want to visit) to steer guests clear of the "headliner" attractions at each location. Since TDO is too cheap to invest in increasing the number of attractions per park or at least "plussing" the attractions that people don't want to currently wait in line for (like Imagination or World of Energy), they've had to invent FP+ to try to steer guests to these attractions and away from rides like Soarin' by giving them a FastPass to an attraction like Imagination. Soarin' at California Adventure doesn't have consistently long lines like EPCOT because its in a park that has 8.5 million guests last year vs. 11.2 million at EPCOT and more importantly - it's in a park that has Radiator Springs Racers, ToT, Screamin', Midway Mania, Mermaid, Aladdin, Grizzly River Run to pull guests away from it. In EPCOT, you've got... Test Track as a major draw and that's about it these days. That isn't a slight on SpaceShip Earth or anything; but, none of the EPCOT attractions have the same drawing power either in ride quality or more importantly "newness" to make a dent into Soarin's line. Increasing EPCOT's Soarin's capacity per hour by adding another theater will help; but, it won't help the fact that the rest of EPCOT can't pull it's share of the weight. The "problem" rides at WDW like Soarin' and Midway Mania are more of a testament to the lack of capacity at their respective parks than simply the hourly throughput of each ride. People line up like crazy for them simply because there isn't anything else they feel they would rather do at each place.

FerretAfrosSep 03, 2014

That's pretty much the heart of the argument: for a number of reasons, the waits at DCA are consistently lower than at Epcot They also do a much better job filling the theaters at DCA. They have a heavily-used Single Rider line, and the groupers do a good job of finding the right size parties to fill a row; as a Single Rider, I've had back-to-back shows where they manage to fill completely fill the theater without any singles. The groupers in Epcot seem less likely to fill up every seat, and there's no Single Rider option, leaving some unrealized capacity with their existing setup ETA: That's not to say that they send out half-full theaters in Epcot, but it's not unusual to have 4-5 empty seats in each show. When you do that for ~7 shows per hour, in two theaters, in a 12-hour day, that really starts to add up

MansionButler84Sep 03, 2014

Do we really need to argue about the exact number of minutes that people wait for Soarin' at DCA? It has shorter waits than at Epcot. That's all that matters for argument's sake here. The capacity of the ride works in California but not in Florida. Shall we also add a 2nd track to Test Track and Rock 'n' Roller Coaster?

marni1971Sep 03, 2014

Trip report thread, remember?

PeterAltSep 03, 2014

Thank you! It was fun! (Despite the numerous problems I encountered... Actually stretching my problem solving skills to the absolute limit was half the fun... Not while in crisis mode but after being successful in finding solutions)... And San Jose will forever haunt me... That city is haunted and I believe it is the inspiration of the song Hotel California!

JenniferSSep 03, 2014

And you've got pics to prove it! Great job on the trip report, Peter. We really enjoyed it.

PeterAltSep 03, 2014

That's funny because it was hit and run for me a few days ago. I got all the major rides in (my fav plus all the new ones and upgraded ones) for both parks (some rides twice) in less than a full day (3pm-10pm). In the order I got on the rides... Radiator Springs Racers TZTOT Voyage of the Little Mermaid PotC BTMRR (twice) Space Mountain (twice) Matterhorn Mountain It's a Small World Alice in Wonderland Indiana Jones Splash Mountain I'd say I did good for just 7 hours!

PeterAltSep 03, 2014

When I was there earlier this week, the wait was less than 15 minutes. It would have been less because I was a single rider. Despite that, I was trying to do both parks in a single day and have ridden it twice after it opened at DCA and decided to skip it this time.

PeterAltSep 03, 2014

Most of FW is an embarrassment and is in sad shape!