Monday, October 25, 2010

Disneyland's Jungle Cruise...

There are many childhood experiences that have shaped the Tiki Lifestyle that I live here on the Secret Island today. One of those was a visit on the Jungle Cruise in Adventureland at Disney. This year Disneyland was fifty years old, since its opening on July 17th 1955, many attractions have come, gone or been modernized beyond recognition. The Jungle cruise however has stood the test of time.

Another boat leaves on a Jungle Adventure.
"Taking up approximately three acres of Disneyland's eighty-five, the attraction was one of the park's largest and most hyped entertainments. Guests board a gas-powered boat that winds through a murky river along a hidden track. Dense foliage surround the banks where many exotic (and animatronic) animals and natives play out scenes before the voyagers. The boat's skipper guides the guests through the treacherous waters, punctuating their continuous narration with many a pun. Head-hunters, hippos and pistol-wielding monkeys all approach you but as the skipper always states, the scariest part of the Jungle Cruise is the return to civilization."
          Taken from Metro Classics.
Walt and Harper Goff the design discuss the attraction before opening.
The skipper's poor quality jokes, were and still are part of the attractions charm. Pixar's John Lasseter, whose first job was working at Disneyland, always stated that his favorite shift was manning the Jungle Cruise boat.

Walt with a model of the final design. Much cleaner in design than Goff's original concept.

Disney designer Harper Goff is best known for creating the world's most fantastic submarine, the Nautilus for Walt Disney's 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. But his creative touch can be seen all around Disneyland and in the jungles of Adventureland. The little canopied launches that cruise the world's exotic waterways were first conceptualized by Harper Goff in 1954. His early sketches show vessels more rugged and "travelled" than the shiny bright boats that appeared at Disneyland® on opening day.

Never resisting the opportunity to empty my pockets with cool artworks and collectables, most notably through Josh Agle, Disney are now releasing a model based on Goff's original concept. Kevin Kidney and Jody Daily's scale replica of the Amazon Belle looks as though it may have crossed the Mekong, borne the rains of the Irrawaddy, and survived the rapids of Kilimanjaro a million times before. Disney say that "it's absolutely the perfect thing to display in your study next to your shrunken head collection." I have to agree!

Early Concept Jungle Cruise Boat
Artists: Kevin Kidney & Jody Daily
Medium: Resin and Metal on Wood Base
Edition Size: 500
Retail: $225
Dimensions: 12-3/4" long x 5-1/2" tall x 4-1/2" wide
Release Date: October 16, 2010

Want to find out what else Disney are working on - click here.

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