Disney Announces New Splash Mountain Replacement Ride Details
With one of Disney’s most popular rides closing on both coasts, new details have been revealed about its Princess and the Frog-themed replacement.
Disney first announced Splash Mountain’s retheme back in 2020, sparking a considerable stir at the time due to its high status amongst park fans.
However, with Disneyland’s original version confirmed to close on May 31, Disney just shared new details about its replacement and how it continues the story of The Princess and the Frog.
New Updates for Disney’s Splash Mountain Redo
Set to open at both the Disneyland Park and Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom in 2024, Tiana’s Bayou Adventure isn’t just Splash Mountain’s successor, it’s a semi-sequel to The Princess and the Frog.
According to Disney, Tiana’s Bayou Adventure picks up where the 2009 film left off and shows how Tiana’s dream restaurant evolved into a community enterprise known as Tiana’s Foods.
Part of expanding her business involved transforming an old salt mine (which appears to be the “mountain” from Splash Mountain). This is also where Tiana enlists guests to help locate a missing ingredient for her Mardis Gras party.
To continue Princess Tiana’s story, Disney shared that Tiana’s Bayou Adventure is reuniting the original film’s cast.
In addition to Anika Noni Rose who’s returning to voice Tiana, Bruno Campos is reprising his role as Prince Naveen, alongside Michael Leon Wooley as Louis and Jenifer Lewis as Mama Odie.
In fact, Disney just released a new piece of concept art showing Mama Odie audio-animatronic for the ride, while also noting her faithful snake companion, Juju, will still be by her side.
But as the world of The Princess and the Frog expands, so does its cast.
Disney further elaborated on the intention to introduce a “brand-new cast of original Disney characters” with “distinct names and personalities,” enriching this particular property through an experience as opposed to simply on-screen
Lastly, it was confirmed that fans will enjoy new, original music alongside songs from the original film and that Tiana’s famous beignets will play a unique role as well.
Why Tiana’s Adventure Isn’t a Typical Disney Ride
Retheming or overhauling preexisting rides is nothing new for Disney Imagineering.
One of the latest examples is Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind at Walt Disney World’s Epcot, which replaced the park’s Universe of Energy attraction.
However, Tiana’s Bayou Adventure is different in that Splash Mountain was far from unpopular or underutilized. Instead, its closure is due to the ride being inspired by 1946’s racially insensitive Song of the South.
In replacing the recognizable Splash Mountain with a new story based on Disney’s first African-American Disney Princess, the pressure’s on, in more ways than one, to get this ride right.
While park guests and Disney fans will have to wait until 2024 to see if Imagineering succeeds, it’s fascinating to hear how The Princess and the Frog’s story will continue through the medium of a theme park attraction.
With both versions of the ride set to open next year, in-park construction and further updates are sure to shed more light on what Tiana’s next chapter has in store.
Tiana’s Bayou Adventure opens at the Disneyland Park and Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom in 2024.