The Rock Is Teaming Up With Disney Imagineers To Redesign This Classic Disney Attraction
Posted May 5
Updated May 10
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is no stranger to Disney. Last year, he played the demigod Maui in the latest animated feature “Moana.”
Currently, he’s signed on to produce and star in the upcoming live-action film “Jungle Cruise.” This movie gets its inspiration from the Disney Parks attraction of the same name. In this original Disneyland attraction, guests climb on board a boat for an international river adventure.
But The Rock has bigger ideas than simply starring in the “Jungle Cruise” movie. It also looks like he’s on board to make some significant changes to the actual attraction in Disney parks across the world!
Changes Coming To Jungle Cruise Ride?
Last week, an Instagram post by The Rock announced a new partnership with Disney Imagineers regarding the beloved ride.
Grateful SOB to have Walt and Mickey watching over my shoulder as @danygarciaco and I embark on this amazing project. For our big #JungleCruise creative meeting at DISNEY's highly secure R&D facilities, me and @danygarciaco were escorted into THE VAULT. A legitimate vault where all of Disney's biggest secrets and plans are kept. Curtains were pulled back for us to reveal the actual drawn up plans that Walt Disney had his brother, Roy Disney take to New York to present to the bankers in 1950 for the potential loan to build what's now known as Disney Land. Cant imagine what that meeting with bankers was like. Roy: Alright gentlemen, so me and my brother Walt, want to build the greatest multiple theme park attraction in the world. Banker: Oh that seems fun, Mr. Disney. Roy: *smiles in a playful mischievous manner, Oh yes my good man, it will have a few things that are in fact, fun. Well, clearly I don't know how the hell men were actually talking in the 50's, but what I do know is being able to star in and produce #JungleCruise is a dream come true. BUT what takes this to the next level, is that we'll partner with Disney's brilliant Imagineers to help re-engineer and re-design the #JungleCruise ride in all the Disney theme parks around the world. A very special opportunity for us and our @sevenbucksprod to create an unforgettable and fun EXPERIENCE for families around the world. And as Walt Disney himself would say… it's magical. Next step is finding our visionary director. Exciting times. #JungleCruise #TheExperience #DisneyStudios #Imagineers #SevenBucksProds #WaltAndRockWouldveBeenBesties #AndWorkoutBuddies #WaltWouldveLovedMyJackedUpPickUpTruck ð¤
In his post, The Rock shared his excitement about being in a top-secret research and development area within the Disney company. There, he got to see the original plans Walt Disney and his brother Roy presented to bankers to get the money to build Disneyland. For any Disney fan, that’s something to geek out over.
However, later in the post, The Rock dropped a surprise no one saw coming about his expanded role tied to the Jungle Cruise.
BUT what takes this to the next level, is that we’ll partner with Disney’s brilliant Imagineers to help re-engineer and re-design the #JungleCruise ride in all the Disney theme parks around the world. A very special opportunity for us and our @sevenbucksprod to create an unforgettable and fun EXPERIENCE for families around the world. And as Walt Disney himself would say… it’s magical. Next step is finding our visionary director. Exciting times.
The next day, he followed up with a second post showing him deep in the Disney archives doing research on the attraction.
Mahalo from "the Vault" at DISNEY's R&D facilities. Figured the best way to make an excellent #JungleCruise movie was to fully immerse myself in the rich history and culture of DISNEY. Big shout to the Imagineers for pulling out all the original #JungleCruise concept art from the 1950's for me and oral/visual history lesson behind the iconic ride and it's infamous and relentlessly entertaining "Skippers". Fascinating to understand Walt Disney's early idea for the #JungleCruise ride, which from the 1950's concept art behind me, was original titled JUNGLE RIVER and meant to be enjoyed with LIVE ANIMALS at Animal Kingdom. Which as we all know, animals that live in and near an African river ain't playin' that game. ð¦ #JungleCruise will mark my fourth collaboration with the company and potential to be the best one of all of them. Shout to my buds Sean Bailey, Alan Horn and Bob Iger for being great partners. Kristin Burr you're a rockstar. Thanks again team and see everyone down the road. This'll be a fun one. #GreatestAdventureEver #JungleCruise
He shared that Walt Disney’s original concept for the ride had live animals. However, Imagineers thought better of it. Wild animals tend to get a bit agitated when people get near their territory.
Either way, it looks like The Rock is serious about making some changes to a beloved original Disneyland attraction.
So, how do Jungle Cruise fans feel about this news?
The Jungle Cruise Battle Begins
Disney fans are known to be passionate. especially when it comes to anything Walt Disney directly created. Needless to say, not everyone jumped on The Rock bandwagon when they heard the news.
“You’re an actor, act in movies. You’re not an imagineer,” complained Instagram user @wedway1995. “This is Walt’s original attraction and it has belonged to millions of people around the world for over 60 years. It’s not your business to change it.”
“Looking forward to the movie, and love you DJ, but any changes to the Jungle Cruise would be a travesty. It’s one of the best rides at Disneyland AS IS. Don’t mess with perfection!” said Instagram user @gertie.the.frenchie.
Still, others seem just as excited and open-minded to the idea of a Jungle Cruise upgrade.
“What an honor for you to be able to have input in such a treasured attraction. I am sure you must know how beloved that ride is for so many generations of families,” posted Instagram user @resaleigh. “I hope you can respect and maintain as much original concept as possible and the changes that occur aren’t selling out to the movie that was inspired by the ride. Remember. The ride came first.”
“I wouldn't be opposed to a little new life being breathed into Jungle Cruise, but I'm not sure this is how I envisioned it,” said Josie on DisneyTouristBlog.com.
Of course, Disney has confirmed nothing at this point. Yet, The Rock’s social media posts indicate the company is seriously considering it.
What do you think? Should the new “Jungle Cruise” movie inspire changes to the ride?