We love a good Disney nighttime spectacular. Who doesn’t?
Every time we get to see a new nighttime show in the Disney parks, we tend to be wowed by the technological advancements they’ve implemented. Did you ever imagine you would see Cinderella Castle transform the way it does thanks to projection mapping on Happily Ever After (R.I.P.)? Now, Disney will be lighting up the sky in a NEW way at the end of your park day.
Disneyland Paris will be premiering a new drone pre-show during their 30th anniversary celebrations in March! This is the first time aerial technology will be regularly used in a Disney park, according to the Orange County Register.
The new “Disney D-Light” drone pre-show will happen before the “Disney Illuminations” fireworks show and use 200 synchronized drones to form a sparkling “30” above Sleeping Beauty Castle. It will play in sync with the new theme song “Un Monde Qui S’illumine” — or “A World That Lights Up.”
Disneyland Paris has been developing the drone show with Dronisos, which is a drone entertainment company based in France, according to the Orange County Register. Dronisos has made over 40,000 drone shows for events like the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympics.
Secret drone rehearsals for the Disneyland Paris show have been taking place over the past few months in the bucolic wine-country fields of Bordeaux, France (imagine visiting a vineyard in France and just randomly seeing a drone show — pretty cool!).
Drones aren’t completely new to Disney, they’ve used them at certain events before. They were used for the “Starbright Holidays” show at Disney Springs in 2016, and there were X-Wing fighter drones over Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge during the dedication ceremony of Rise of the Resistance in Hollywood Studios in 2019. There was even a drone display Disney did in Los Angeles for National Streaming Day in May of 2021.
And, Disney has filed patents for cutting-edge drone concepts in the past few years. In early 2021, we spotted a patent filed by Disney for a “Themed Aerial Vehicle Entertainment Platform for Providing Dynamically-Coordinated Show.” Basically, they’re working on a themed drone that would be able to fly in sync with other elements during a nighttime spectacular.
The patent notes, “The description relates to a new system or platform…adapted for providing a dynamically-coordinated show…to entertain guests of a facility such as a theme park, an outdoor sporting stadium, a cruise ship, and so on.” So, that’s another sign that we might see DRONES in more Disney theme parks!
This particular patent shows imagery of what would be a flying pirate ship, just like the one from Peter Pan! Now, interestingly enough, we’ve seen a patent for a drone-powered flying pirate ship before, but that one looked a little bit different.
We’re not sure if these patents are just working on general tech or if they’re for something specific. It is interesting that BOTH focus on a flying pirate ship as an example. Maybe we’ll be seeing Hook’s ship in an upcoming nighttime spectacular in one of the Disney parks around the world!
It would make sense if Disney started adding more drones into their nighttime entertainment. Dronisos promotes their drones as a cost-saving alternative to fireworks, which can easily run into five figures per show, according to the Orange County Register. Outdoor shows with up to 1,000 drones cost $100,000 to $300,000 to develop, according to Dronisos, so Disney could be saving up to six figures each week if they swapped out fireworks for drones.
Plus, drones are noise and pollution free, which would be great for fireworks shows like “World of Color” at Disneyland Resort, which is in an area with a lot of surrounding hotels.
It would also make sense for us to see more drones being used in Disney Parks soon because Disney is behind a lot of other theme parks when it comes to using drone technology. Universal Studios Hollywood has a drone show in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, and other theme parks like SeaWorld, Dollywood, Silverwood, and more either already have drone shows or have them in the works, according to the Orange County Register.
We could see Disney using drones in a lot of different areas, like in addition to or in place of fireworks at shows like Harmonious or Fantasmic! And, it wouldn’t be surprising to see Disney try and create more technologically advanced entertainment for upcoming milestones, like the 100th anniversary of The Walt Disney Company or EPCOT’s 40th Anniversary.
We can’t wait to see what the drone show is going to look like in Disneyland Paris! And, we’ll be on the lookout for news and updates on possible new technology coming to the Disney theme parks, so stay tuned to DFB for more.
And, check out our 20 tricks for your BEST Disney World trip!
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What do you think of drones coming to more Disney Parks? Tell us in the comments!