Iger Takes a Victory Lap
Disney World is getting a big investment while Florida's governor gets a big surprise. Plus, new ride plans from Universal and ticket discount links.
Iger Promises $17 Billion Investment at Walt Disney World: At The Walt Disney Company's online annual stockholders meeting this week, CEO Bob Iger committed to $17 billion in new investment at the Walt Disney World Resort over the next decade, leading to what he said would be 13,000 new jobs at the resort. The reveal came during his answer about Disney's political battle with the state of Florida, and we've got the full transcript of Iger's response.
Here's How Disney Played Florida's Ron DeSantis: Speaking of that battle, we've got a recap of just what the Reedy Creek Improvement District board did in advance of the governor's attempted takeover of the district board. And yes, we will talk about that viral King Charles detail, too.
Also: TRON Lightcycle Run Officially Opens at Walt Disney World
Elsewhere at Disney
Disney Cruise Line Is Coming to Singapore: The former Global Dream, the massive ship that Disney saved from the scrapyard after its owner went bankrupt, get its home port. And, as expected, it will be in Asia. Here's what we know.
Disney Marks Construction Milestone on New Cruise Ship: The second Triton class ship begins assembly in Germany, as the DCL gets ready to welcome the Disney Treasure next year.
Back on the 'land: Disneyland's New Members-Only Lounge Gets an Opening Date
Universal Plans for Its Future
Check Out Universal's Wild New Carousel Ride: Universal has filed a patent application for the wildest carousel system that I ever have seen. Titled "Choreographed Ride Systems and Methods" and filed March 30, the patent application describes a type of trackless ride system for vehicles that can move up and down while rolling from side to side, influenced by user input, while moving relative to other vehicles along a ride path. Check it out.
If a Nonexistent Coaster Makes a Sound, Does Anyone Hear It? Meanwhile, Universal Studios Hollywood has begun testing its new roller coaster, which it hasn't even built yet.
At Other Parks
Vote of the Week
What Is the World's Top Theme Park Brand? The two brands you probably would expect are dominating in our Vote of the Week, but please do stop by and cast your vote, if you haven't already, then stay of the discussion about what prominent theme park brands ought to be doing to win our business in the years to come.
April Fool's and Our AI Experiment
AI's Threat to the Future of Publishing Is No Joke: For April Fool's Day this year, I took advantage of the one-day suspension of social norms about trying to be truthful to try something different. No, I didn't make up some silly new attraction and pretend to announce it. Instead, I turned over the front page to an AI chatbot, which wrote two article for Theme Park Insider, based upon the prompts I submitted.
Then I explained what I did and noted that while AI and predictive text are amazing tools that can help writers like me do a better job for readers like you, the economic incentives created by low-cost and free AI chatbots threaten to further wreck what little marketplace remains for publishing free, accurate, and original online news.
The two AI posts:
Need Tickets? Get These Discounts
Theme Park Insider has partnered with travel ticket providers that I have found offer some of the best deals available online. So before you book your next theme park visit or vacation, please check with our partners to see if they can offer you the best deal. And a portion of your purchase will go to help support Theme Park Insider.
Attraction tickets and city passes from our U.S. travel partner, including Disneyland, Universal Orlando, Knott’s, SeaWorld and Busch Gardens.
International theme park and attraction tickets, including Tokyo Disney, Universal Studios Japan, Disneyland Paris, and more.
Thank you for reading, and I wish you a pleasant and rewarding week ahead,
Robert Niles, Editor