Secrets of Worlds of Pixar | Walt Disney Studios Park | Disneyland Paris 

Worlds of Pixar is a themed zone at Walt Disney Studios Park Paris. Imagineers intended the zone to pay a well-deserved tribute to the art of animation, especially animation created by Pixar Studios.

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Hello everyone, in this show we are diving deep into Worlds of Pixar in Walt Disney Studios Park. Few other Disneyland Paris “lands” offer such a contrasting variety of experiences and attractions. There’s so much to explore. Access Exclusive Episodes on AirMagique+: Visit our Website for the Latest News & Reviews: Follow AirMagique on Social Media Instagram | Twitter | YouTube | TikTok Follow Niels: Instagram | Twitter | Website  AirMagique is an unofficial podcast, made with love, and is not affiliated with The Walt Disney Company or any of its subsidiaries. This episode is not sponsored, all promotional or advertised content will be clearly identified. Intro/Outro Song by:Show Me by LiQWYD Commons — Attribution 3.0 Unported — CC BY 3.0

Worlds of Pixar is undoubtedly the land or zone (as official documentation refers to it) that has been developed most since Walt Disney Studios Park opened in 2002. Perhaps with the exception of Avengers Campus. 

When the park first swung open it’s gates it was named Animation Courtyard, and featured three attractions: Art of Disney Animation, Animagique and Les Tapis Volants – Flying Carpets over Agrabah.

In 2007 the name changed to Toon Studio and two new attractions were added: Crush’s Coaster and Cars-Quatre Roues Rallye. Not too lang after Toy Story Playland opened (2010), followed by Ratatouille: L’Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy (2014). 

In 2021, Disneyland Paris reworked the entire concept. Toon Studio would now be comprised of Animation Celebration (formerly Art of Disney Animation), Animagique and Les Tapis Volants – Flying Carpets over Agrabah, while the remaining attractions and experiences would be  brought together under the umbrella of Worlds of Pixar. In total it currently (2023) features seven attractions, shops as well as themed food and beverage venues. So let’s dive right into the secrets of World’s of Pixar.

RC Racer’s Switch

RC Racer is a Hotwheels style half pipe ride in Toy Story Playland. In order to see this hidden detail stand outside the ride or queue. Look at the upper side of the load/unload building. There’s a massive on and off switch on the outside of the structure. What’s cool is that the switch actually works. Reacting to the attraction being active or not! When people board and deboard, the switch is set to “OFF” and when RC Racer starts running it sets itself to “FAST”. It’s such a fun detail that goes unnoticed by many.

Monkey’s Hidden Message

When exiting Toy Story Playland towards Place de Remy or Cars: Road Trip, folks walk underneath a giant garland comprised of “Barrel of Monkeys” toys. Each monkey holds an oversized Scrabble letter, that when combined, spell out “Goodbye”. However park goers entering Toy Story Playland here, will see the word “Welcome” on the other side of the tiles. This gag works since both words contain the same number of letters. 

Buzz Lightyears Season’s Greetings

Toy Story Playland is a mini-land that Imagineers packed full of fun details. When heading towards the main entrance of the Toy Story Playland, folks are greeted by a huge Buzz Lightyear statue. Park goers can walk underneath Buzz and it’s a popular photo spot. Via the magic of pre-recorded audio, Buzz also “speaks” to park goers every now and then. What makes this experience unique is that Disney adjusts the audio messages on a seasonal basis.  During the festive season Buzz says things like “Happy Holidays”. It’s a fun and clever way to bring more of the Christmas season into Walt Disney Studios Park. We hope that FRIDAY in Avengers Campus will also get seasonal messages in the future.

Secrets from Above

Source: Apple Maps

Only visible from above (or your favorite satellite image viewer) is that the building of Slinky Dog Dash looks like a giant retro Slinky Dog toy box. It even features all the toy box graphics that an original would. When you are near Slinky Dog Dash be sure to check out the round gate that connects Toy Story Playland to Place de Remy. After sunset, the gate features blue lighting which follows the round shape of the gate. Due to it’s appearance Imagineers referred to it as the Stargate between the two environments.

Andy Has Been Here

Another fun detail that is only visible from above are giant footprints along Toy Story Playlands path. It’s as if Andy just ran through the backyard and treaded on soft soil. From the decor to the landscaping, everything works together to give park goers the impression of being shrunk to the size of the Green Army Men. The entire land is set up in a way that makes it appear as if Andy has just left, after setting up his favorite toys. Imagineers also originally intended to build a spinning attraction in the land, which was eventually replaced by RC Racer during the lands development process. 

The RC Racer Challenge

The queue for RC Racer proved challenging to execute. The floor resembles the track of a classic slot car racing game. Just like the real toy each tack segment is independent, only on a much larger scale. Unlike the toy, the segments are made of concrete that have been sculpted, painted and precisely cut. When everything went according to plan the segments fit into each other like a puzzle. According to Imagineer Jim Shull it was a real challenge to build. That’s not the only challenge imagineers had to overcome when it came to RC Racer. The track cover for the attraction proved to be extremely difficult to assemble because it had never been done before. Thanks to the lessons learned in Paris the next two installations in Hong Kong and Shanghai went much smoother.

Cars Quatre Roues Rallye Hidden Mickey’s

The Cars Quatre Roues Rallye, also known as Cars Race Rally, utilizes a standard Zamperla Demolition Derby ride system consisting of two spinning turntables. The vehicles seamlessly transition between the turntables, skillfully maneuvering and swapping positions with the other vehicles as they interweave with one another. Next to the spinning platforms, near Mater and Lightning McQueen, is small structure that appears to be made of wood. Looking closely at its roof park goers can discover a Hidden Mickey comprised of three tires. Another Hidden Mickey can be found nearby on Maters hood. Looking right above the engine folks can spot what appear to be miniature Mickey ears.

Unlimited Ratatouille 

Ratatouille : L’Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy, also known as Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure, houses several fun details and secrets. One secret that is more likely to occur on full days or when riding the attraction is operating at maximum capacity can result in a much longer ride. The load and unload stations can fill up to 6 rat mobiles at a time, however the mobiles travel through the attraction in groups of 3. Every once in a while a short delay may occur, mostly because someone doesn’t get in or off the attraction fast enough. Occurrences like these can cause the entire attraction to halt at certain strategic points until the issue is resolved. 

In order to not have park goers stare at a blank or frozen image on a screen, Imagineers incorporated loop-able sections within the footage. We’ve experienced two of these so far, once in Scene 8 (the final kitchen scene) and once during Scene 9 (Remy’s goodbye, thats the scene where everyone is having dinner overlooking Paris). Now in the final kitchen scene the loop may occur just before the champagne (or wine?) bottle is uncorked. This creates a wonderful bit of tension as riders wait for the cork to fly at them. As for Remy’s Goodbye, the loop occurs during a more relaxed story moment. It’s after all of the dialogue has ended and all the characters are waving while the band plays. These loops can theoretically hold riders in place indefinitely. We once got stuck in front of the uncorking loop for a solid 2 minutes. Which doesn’t sound like that much but when your waiting for a cork to fly at you it feels much longer. It’s insanely cool Imagineers put that much thought into the ride experience. Even considering times when things do not run as smoothly as anticipated.

Guido & Luigi’s Disappearance 

When riding Cars: Road Trip, a re-themed and shortened version of the park opening day Studio Tram Tour attraction, park goers can spot Lightning McQueen hanging out with Guido and Luigi. However, Luigi and Guido were not created for Cars: Road Trip. They used to be props, stationed to the right of the entrance of  on the right side of the entrance of the Cars spinning ride, which is opposite of Crush’s Coaster and the meet and greet location of Cars Quatre Roues Rallye. Luigi’s Casa Della Tires facade as well as a pile of tires is still there today. It’s as if Luigi and Guido decided it was time for a change of scenery and headed over into the attraction… also cost engineering.

Bringing Remy’s Paris to Life

Place de Remy as well as Ratatouille: L’Aventure Totalement Toquée de Remy (Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure) is Walt Disney Studios Parks second truly “immersive” land. Shifting the strategy from a look behind the scenes to immersing park goers in the films story. Let’s take a closer look at the various stages of the Imagineering process. 

The design team usually starts with a preliminary concept and concept art which visualizes the general idea of an immersive zone surrounding a main attraction. Imagineers originally intended to place Place de Remy next to the now defunct entrance or Studio Tram Tour: Behind the Magic, the same location that Toy Story Playland is in now. 

While the tools have evolved as technology has advanced, the way an attraction is designed has not changed since Walt Disney’s time. Talented artists are still essential, and part of the original films team helped design the first concepts. Ensuring that the  decor is as faithful as possible to the original film. 

Pixar art director Harley Jessup helped design all the sets, including those in Place de Rémy. Like the film, the Paris of Place de Remy is not a copy of the real city, but an “animated” interpretation of Parisian architecture, exaggerating certain elements, breaking symmetrical lines and accentuating curves. Also known as Crookidology. 

While this may be easy to execute in drawings, a miniature model of the entire land ensures that it works in 3D. It also enables Imagineers to view Place de Remy from all perspectives. Remy’s Ratatouille Adventures storyboard stage was completed in collaboration with Brad Bird, the film’s director. Ensuring that the attraction’s storyline is consistent with the film. 

Remy’s Ratatouille Adventures does not simply regurgitate the films storyline, but it expands upon it. Once the Imagineers concepts and designs are finalized and approved, all assets are turned into highly detailed three dimensional sculptures. These serve as a reference for the “real world” construction of the attraction. 

In order to create Place de Remy and the attraction, Disneyland Paris honed the skills of over 4,000 international experts and artists. All working together to carefully craft each detailed decor element. The Imagineers turned to Michael Giacchino, the original film composer, to create an original soundtrack for the attraction. Michael included the accordion in the attractions composition and fused it with a variety of jazz elements. To add an edge of spontaneity all of the soundtracks were recorded live.

Have you experienced or seen the Secrets listed above? Let us know in the comments below.

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Published by Eric from AirMagique

Eric is the host and chief content editor of the AirMagique - Unofficial Disneyland Paris Podcast. He writes articles, takes photographs, produces videos and edits the podcast.

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