If you’ve been waiting for some big updates about The Princess and the Frog retheme coming to the Splash Mountain ride in the Disney parks, there’s an important set of dates you need to mark down.
Way back in 2020, Disney first announced that Splash Mountain would be transformed into a ride themed to The Princess and the Frog. Since that time, we’ve gotten a brief look at some concept art, some more details about the ride, information about new characters that will appear, and more. But now we’ve got an exciting update!
In early June of 2022, Anika Noni Rose, the voice of Tiana from The Princess and the Frogappeared on the Kelly and Ryan talk show and talked a bit about the upcoming retheme.
During that interview, Anika Noni Rose shared “They are making a ride — it’ll be out in 2024.” She continued, “I’ve been involved in the beginning, just talking about how we want it to be, what we want it to do, but, if I were to tell you anything else, I would be sucked into the ground and you ‘d never see me again.”
Disney had not shared an opening date for the ride yet, so that came as quite the surprise! But according to Disney, the timeline Anika Noni Rose shared may not quite be finalized.
Entertainment Weekly reported that, following the Anika Noni Rose interview, a Disney spokesperson said, “timing has not been determined” for the opening of the ride. So don’t hold your breath for a 2024 opening just yet!
So just when will we get the chance to learn more about this ride? Well, we do have some information on that. According to Entertainment Weekly, Disney plans to share more details about the ride retheme during the Essence Festival of Culture. That Festival will run from June 30th through July 3rd in New Orleans.
A Festival in New Orleans seems like an appropriate place to drop some Tiana news!
A press release from the Disney Company, also from early June of 2022, notes that Disney will actually be the exclusive entertainment sponsor for the 2022 Essence Festival of Culture. So now Disney’s overall involvement in the festival, and its selection as the place to release Splash Mountain retheme news, makes even more sense.
The Essence Festival is one of the biggest festivals in the US ESSENCE Communications, Inc. is actually the leading “media, technology and commerce company serving Black women and communities.”
The festivities start with some actions in LA, Washington, DC, and Chicago. It all ends with Essence Fest in New Orleans, which will be offered in person and virtually. There will be a beauty carnival, concert series, food and wine festival, film festival, health club, and more — all as part of this festival experience.
As the entertainment sponsor, Disney will be inviting those at the festival to “experience ‘The Power of Joy’ and the many ways Black joy reflects itself at Disney and the communities it touches.” There will be a chance to immerse yourself in storytelling, enjoy entertainment, interact with celebrities, and more. There will also be exclusive screenings and experiences from Disney’s various brands.
You can bet we’ll be keeping a close eye on all of the news from the Essence Festival to see what details Disney shares.
If you’re looking for more details about The Princess and the Frog retheme to Splash Mountain, click here for our full page about this transformation! We’ve got details about the inspiration behind the ride, some of the new characters coming, and more.
Back in 2020, Josh D’Amaro, the Chairman of Disney Parks, Experiences, and Products said that the reimagining of Splash Mountain had been expedited, but we’ve yet to see any indication that changes will be made soon. The ride is open on both coasts in its current form, and no official closure dates have been listed yet.
To learn about other projects going on in Disney World, check out our post with details about every single project in the works in the parks right now. And stay tuned for more Disney news!
What new or reimagined Disney attraction are you most looking forward to? Tell us in the comments!