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Old 03-04-2011, 02:50 PM   #1
Stoo
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Question Indiana Jones and the Disney Connection

This is a topic I've been meaning to bring up for a long time: Indiana Jones and Disney. Why?

Don't get me wrong as I'm a fan of Disney as much as anyone else here. (Well maybe not 'as big' since some of you folks are Disney FREAKS!). As a child who grew up loving the films, the TV show, visits to Walt Disney World in Florida, etc., Walt was a true inspiration and was the topic of my very, first public speaking competition as a kid (in which I placed as a finalist). In fact, according to my mother, the very 1st film I saw in the theatre was a re-release of "Snow White". Disney was the greatest thing until "Star Wars" came along and took over in '77.

When I read that ILM were doing the visual effects for "Captain EO" in 1986, I found it interesting. When the "Star Tours" ride opened in early '87, I thought it was a cool idea but the notion also bothered me since "Star Wars" was not a Disney creation. It was puzzling, to say the least.

Then, in the summer of '89, my brother came home from Florida with photos of the Indiana Jones Stunt Spectacular at Disney-MGM theme park. Another cool-but-what-the-hell moment. Paramount had theme parks so why Disney-MGM? Later I read about the Temple du Péril ride in Paris in '93, then I saw the 1995 Superbowl half-time show advertising the Temple of the Forbidden Eye ride which sent my brain into severe confusion. To top it all off, another ride, Temple of the Crystal Skull, opened in Japan in 2001. Was there no end to this bizarreness?

In 2008, I went on the Indy and "Star Tours" rides in Paris but it was very strange to see a full-sized X-wing in the middle of a Disney park (and nowhere even near the actual ride). Other than a purely money-making collaboration, I just don't understand why.

Granted, many people adore the Forbidden Eye attraction and the Disney items of Indy are hot stuff amongst collectors but with all the Indy & "Star Wars" themed rides, events, toys & merchandise that can be found at the parks, are there children out there who believe that these properties were created by Disney?

Does the Indy/Disney relation bother anyone else besides me? In my book, an exploding head, a melting face, a heart getting ripped out, a guy getting shot in the head, a decapitated head, etc. are not the type of material associated with Disney and goes against their strongly-upheld values of family entertainment!

Please, someone tell me that I'm not alone in my bewilderment...
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Old 03-04-2011, 02:58 PM   #2
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Michael Eisner?
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Old 03-04-2011, 03:16 PM   #3
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Spielberg, 1978:

"What we're just doing here, really, is designing a ride at DisneyLand."

"This mine cart thing, we should shoot it at the DisneyLand Matterhorn."
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Old 03-04-2011, 03:24 PM   #4
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Lucas, Catmull and Animation

...some key dates:
  • 1979: George Lucas brings Ed Catmull and associates from the New York Institute of Technology to the West Coast as part of Lucasfilm Ltd.
  • 1984: John Lasseter leaves Disney for Lucasfilm.
  • 1986: Lucas spins off Pixar computer graphics unit, which is bought and incorporated by Steve Jobs; first Academy Award nomination for Luxo Jr.
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Old 03-04-2011, 04:21 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Me
Other than a purely money-making collaboration...
That's all fine & dandy, guys, but the things being cited just basically support a 'behind the scenes' connection and the obviou$, money-making opportunitie$. The root of my chagrin is that the Indy tales feature this type of NON-kiddie/NON-Disney entertainment:

-a melting head!
-a chopped-off head!
-an imploding head!
-an exploding head!
-spikes in a head!
-shot in the head!
-propellor in the face!
-heart ripped out!
-man flattened by a rock-crusher!
-man run over by a 3.5 tonne truck.
...and Indy having WILD, PRE-MARITAL SEX with a stripper! Egads!

Where, in Disney-lore, is this kind of violence (& wild, pre-marital sex) shown? My point is that the Indy films are not worthy of being associated with the puritanical values of the Disney name!
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Old 03-04-2011, 04:30 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stoo
My point is that the Indy films are not worthy of being associated with the puritanical values of the Disney name!
I'm with you, but it just seems that Disney has had to compete with the likes of Nikelodeon for some time.

Having children I can say Disney no longer has carte blanche.

I think they had a renaissance with The Little Mermaid, Pocahontas...ect. but they've moved into other realms to attract parents as well.
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Old 03-04-2011, 04:31 PM   #7
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The reasons: $$$$$$$$$$. And "not worthy" should be expressed as "not in alignment with", for a bit of PC!
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Old 03-04-2011, 04:56 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stoo
Does the Indy/Disney relation bother anyone else besides me? In my book, an exploding head, a melting face, a heart getting ripped out, a guy getting shot in the head, a decapitated head, etc. are not the type of material associated with Disney and goes against their strongly-upheld values of family entertainment!

Well, you could say that about most of Disney's earlier films and shorts:

*a wicked queen who orders a henchman to rip a child's heart out
*an old hag who poisons a girl
*kidnapping children and turning them into donkeys an use them at the salt mines
*hints an satanism
*WWII propoganda such as this
*killing innocent deer
*dogs getting rabies and having to kill them
*blackface and sterotypes
*constant drinking
*constant smoking
*having villains tricking the dumb heros

Even Walt is quoted for believing his films weren't aimed only at children. Its because of the company's current marketing tactics that people believe they're only for children.

I really don't see what the problem is. Disney, at the time they first added Lucas stuff to the parks, needed something to reinvigorate the parks as they were struggling to create new franchises of their own, and Star Wars and Indiana Jones were big with families at the time(still are) so they added.

The fact that Lucas and Spielberg were huge Disney fans and were influenced by them made the fit all the more natural a fit.
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Old 03-04-2011, 05:07 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rocket Surgeon
I'm with you, but it just seems that Disney has had to compete with the likes of Nikelodeon for some time.
Some people pay large amounts of money for images of Mickey Mouse dressed as Indy. While it may be 'cute' to see Mickey dressed as Dr. Jones, would The Mouse ever drive over someone in a 3+1/2 tonne truck? Or kill a man with a flaming shish-kebab? I think not.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mickiana
The reasons: $$$$$$$$$$. And "not worthy" should be expressed as "not in alignment with", for a bit of PC!
Thi$ i$ my point! Though, you are correct about the wording. I should have written: "My point is that the Indy films are not in alignment with being associated with the puritanical values of the Disney name! (rather than "not worthy").

Can anyone spell, "D-i-l-u-t-e-d"?

EDIT: Forbidden Eye, just saw your post. Will reply a bit later.
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Old 03-04-2011, 05:10 PM   #10
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I have more to write on this, but I wanted to briefly say that there's a practical reason for the inclusion. The bulk of Disneyland's attendance comes from Southern Californians with Annual Passes, and of that roughly half of that turnstile count are childless twenty & thirty-somethings. You obviously want to cater to that group since they have more money to spend than you're typical family of four.

If you walk around the park, you'll notice a gradual maturation of attractions and merchandising; i.e., Pirates of the Caribbean caters nearly exclusively to teens and up. Years ago you would have never seen a t-shirt said "The Beatings Will Continue Until Morale Improves" at Disneyland. That said, Disney was never about kiddies; it was about family entertainment. Somewhere along the way that was willfully forgotten.

The only person to blame for the "franchise capturing" that Disney has (or has not) been able to do is George Lucas. He's willfully ignored the franchise for twenty-plus years, and Disney is just about the only thing keeping Indy in the public consciousness.

More later.
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Old 03-04-2011, 05:57 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Me
...not the type of material associated with Disney and goes against their strongly-upheld values of family entertainment!
REMINDER: I did say "family entertainment"...not just "kiddie" so, please, don't ignore this.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Forbidden Eye
Even Walt is quoted for believing his films weren't aimed only at children. Its because of the company's current marketing tactics that people believe they're only for children.

I really don't see what the problem is. Disney, at the time they first added Lucas stuff to the parks, needed something to reinvigorate the parks as they were struggling to create new franchises of their own, and Star Wars and Indiana Jones were big with families at the time(still are) so they added.

The fact that Lucas and Spielberg were huge Disney fans and were influenced by them made the fit all the more natural a fit.
Forbidden Eye, your list of shocking elements (which I didn't quote because they can read above) don't hold a candle to anything shown in the Indy films. The only thing that comes close is the mention of a child's heart getting ripped out and that isn't shown on-screen. You don't SEE a child's heart being ripped out in a Disney film, do you?

@Le Saboteur: My good friend....Along with the other comments above, you're simply reinforcing my point: Other than a money-making venture for lot$ of ca$h, there is no reason why Indy has become part of Disney lore. Mentioning "Pirates of the Caribbean" is absolutely POINTLESS because that sprang from a Disney ride to begin with.

Indy was NOT created by Disney and he doesn't belong there!
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Old 03-04-2011, 06:23 PM   #12
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In the spirit of good fun...and discourse

I think you're going to find yourself in the minority on this one, Stoo.

As the arguments pro/con develop over time. Just my 2 cents at this stage in the game.

Chuckle...if someone were to say the Camp of KOTCS matches the Camp of High School Musical...that would be the death knell you'd have to concede to.

Personally, I'd like to see the anti-semite argument well postulated as a comparatory example, but I doubt anyone will even investigate, much less try.
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Old 03-04-2011, 06:40 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pale Horse
Chuckle...if someone were to say the Camp of KOTCS matches the Camp of High School Musical...that would be the death knell you'd have to concede to.
I think those two audiences are closer than either of us would like...

We've had the "is Indy a good role model discussion" before...and he surely did NOT start out as one. As the iconic role and move became a series, the questionable material made the jump away from Indy and to the villains. Indy became closer to a Disney hero with each outing.

Disney still retains the child friendly content but has matured to attract teens and (as the case with Pleasure Island) adults.

Indy softened enough to fit into this Disney evolution, and Prates of the Caribbean has taken the baton and sailed with it.

Is Pirates the most racy of the Disney offerings, (Tortuga whores and drunkards)?
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Old 03-04-2011, 06:41 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stoo
Indy was NOT created by Disney and he doesn't belong there!

I'm not sure that's relevant though, especially considering many of the Disney films are their own versions of earlier, often more gruesome stories. A film being made into theme park attractions doesn't seem all that far afield from the same principle.

Also, doubtlessly, there's something attractive to Lucas and Spielberg about having their films realized in another medium. (After all, Star Wars was also brought to life in Disney parks, and there's ET at Universal.)

Rocket's right, of course, that Eisner is a lot of it, especially since he was pivotal in the creation of the original film's deal at Paramount.

But it's also important to remember that it's far from the case that all of the attractions at the Disney theme parks originate in old Disney properties. Sure, that became the case later on, and has always been the case to some extent (Eisner sure didn't invent synergy). Indeed, some of them were clearly influenced by given films, with the Jungle Cruise having The African Queen all over it, and Frontierland, Main Street USA, and the Haunted Mansion have various films and genres all over them. (There was a stagecoach ride, for Pete's sake...)

Now, yes, the bringing in of outside properties was a new development, sure. But it was an artistically fruitful one, especially in the case of the two Indiana Jones Adventure attractions, which are among the pinnacle examples of immersive theme park design they've come up with, from queue onward. (The stunt show's fun, and and so is Star Tours, but the Paris coaster has never sounded like anything all that special.)

Does the quality of the product make up for your concerns? Perhaps not. But I think it's a good thing both for the Disney parks and for the world of Indiana Jones.
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Old 03-04-2011, 06:54 PM   #15
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I'm still waiting for the crossover ride from their 1984 film Something Wicked this way Comes...

Quote:
Is Pirates the most racy of the Disney offerings, (Tortuga whores and drunkards)?


Heck no. You should watch the Three (Gay) Caballeros from 1944, if you want to see racy!
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Old 03-04-2011, 07:00 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rocket Surgeon
Is Pirates the most racy of the Disney offerings, (Tortuga whores and drunkards)?

As a currently active franchise? Undoubtedly. (Of course, let's not forget the controversy the ride itself caused in the 90s.)
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Old 03-04-2011, 07:33 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Attila the Professor
...in the case of the two Indiana Jones Adventure attractions, which are among the pinnacle examples of immersive theme park design they've come up with, from queue onward. (The stunt show's fun, and and so is Star Tours, but the Paris coaster has never sounded like anything all that special.)




Le Temple du Peril isn't anything to write home about. It's a decently themed attraction, but the underlying ride is quite underwhelming. Once you're in the mine coaster, you launch out, go around a couple of tight turns, an inversion, and then you're done. And it's all over in about 15 seconds.

Of the three rides, the Temple of the Forbidden Eye is my favorite. The combination of hydraulic rams and actual oil/diesel fumes all combine to give you a greater sensation of being out of control over Temple of the Crystal Skull's electromagnetic control system. You can oftentimes hear it "hissing" as it goes through the motions, and everything seems too controlled.

However, arriving at The Lost River Delta by boat, and seeing that giant Aztec pyramid towering over the landscape is awesome.

I still hope that Disney retools Le Temple du Peril (now that DLRP's financial woes are non-existent), and they go ahead with the full-fledged coaster that was supposed to be there including the "Indy Land within a land" concept they originally wanted to do.
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Old 03-04-2011, 08:07 PM   #18
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Cory Doctorow wrote a wonderful little piece about Disney theme parks in Wired a few years back, and it echoed my thoughts pretty well. Disneyland (the one I'm most familiar with) is an incredibly carefully crafted artificial reality, arguably the best on Earth. Entering Disneyland is more akin to walking into a movie brought to life than stepping into a classic amusement park littered with roller coasters, funnel cakes, and discarded soda cups. The real world fades away and you're now walking around and playing in Walt's imagination.

I would love for more such places to exist. (My day job is working on Second Life, which is the virtual reality equivalent.) Just as I love to escape into a book or a film, I'd love to hang up my day-to-day cares and wallow for a week on board the African Queen, or the saloons in a dusty western town, or in the shuttle bay of a starship, or a medieval castle. Preferably all separate, and preferable with as much immersion as possible. (I'm a spoiled 21st Century North American, so doing so without traveling too far, without having to learn a new language, and without risk to health would be swell. And since I have a family, being able to do so in an environment where the kids are unfettered would be a particular bonus.)

Unfortunately, for whatever reason, most of the population of the planet seems to be more obsessed with entertainment in the form of sports, alcohol and politics. So, I'm grudgingly willing to accept that if there's going to be a place to dip into a thrill ride set in an ancient temple with a whip-weilding archaeologist, it's going to be bolted into the city block of Orange County ruled by the mouse.

FWIW, my ideal agenda (assuming the Fast Pass gods are smiling): Tiki Room (with Dole Whip), Jungle Cruise, Indy, Tree House, Bengal BBQ (skewers), Pirates, Haunted Mansion, Royal Street Veranda (fritters & coffee), Tom Sawyer Island, duck through the Zocalo shortcut over to Star Tours, Space Mountain. Rinse & repeat, w/ dinner at Blue Bayou if possible at least once per trip.
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Old 03-04-2011, 08:15 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stoo
@Le Saboteur: My good friend....Along with the other comments above, you're simply reinforcing my point: Other than a money-making venture for lot$ of ca$h, there is no reason why Indy has become part of Disney lore. Mentioning "Pirates of the Caribbean" is absolutely POINTLESS because that sprang from a Disney ride to begin with.

I'm afraid that you're missing the broader comparison between Indy & Pirates, Stoo. I'm referring to the ride, not the movie; until Disney took the effort to upgrade the ride and make it slightly more mature (and to tie into the movie), it was ignored. You went on Pirates to escape the afternoon heat, make out with your girlfriend, or just because it was there and there wasn't a line. That's obviously changed.

As the demographic has shifted, so has the ride and the merchandise. It's slightly more risque, but still walking a very fine line.

Getting back to Indy though, Temple of the Forbidden Eye is reflective of a similar thought process. Despite the obviousness of Adventureland, I have always thought it was the worst utilized and designed. Other than the Jungle Cruise (which could also use an upgrade), there was nothing really "adventure-y" about it. You could shop, have a bad meal at the Tahitian Terrace (really, Walt?), and see the Tiki Room. Again, nothing very "adventure-y."

I'm sure Disney Imagineers saw this in their trend reports, and wanted to fix it since far too many people used Adventureland as a "pass-through" environment. Combine the lack of a thrill ride with an ever changing demographic weened on the likes of Universal Studios, Six Flags, and Great America, and you have to compete. What's more "Adventureland" than Indiana Jones? Not much I wager. So rather than design something that's only going to draw comparisons, why not go all out and acquire the license?

Like Atilla mentioned, bringing in new intellectual properties was a new development in Disneyland's constant evolution. However, at his intellectual, spiritual, and emotional core Indiana Jones is a perfect fit for what Adventureland should be.

The current debate among Disney aficionados seems to be whether or not it's turning into Pixarworld.

Last edited by Le Saboteur : 03-04-2011 at 08:24 PM.
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Old 03-04-2011, 11:26 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stoo
That's all fine & dandy, guys, but the things being cited just basically support a 'behind the scenes' connection and the obviou$, money-making opportunitie$. The root of my chagrin is that the Indy tales feature this type of NON-kiddie/NON-Disney entertainment:

-a melting head!
-a chopped-off head!
-an imploding head!
-an exploding head!
-spikes in a head!
-shot in the head!
-propellor in the face!
-heart ripped out!
-man flattened by a rock-crusher!
-man run over by a 3.5 tonne truck.
...and Indy having WILD, PRE-MARITAL SEX with a stripper! Egads!

Where, in Disney-lore, is this kind of violence (& wild, pre-marital sex) shown? My point is that the Indy films are not worthy of being associated with the puritanical values of the Disney name!

All these things have probabaly happened in Disney cartoons (especially the violent shorts with the likes of Donald Duck) - if not Disney then Warner Brothers (Tom, & Jerry, Wile E. Coyote, etc). There was so much cartoon violence, which if turned into live-action becomes much more shocking.

On top of that, from the accounts by those who knew him, Walt Disney was a bastard
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Old 03-05-2011, 02:03 PM   #21
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Too much to write & quote so I'm going to split my replies into seperate posts. Hope it's not a problem. The 2 mods, Pale & Attila, come first. Then Rocket, Tash & Montana. Le Saboteur gets his own.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pale Horse
In the spirit of good fun...and discourse
I think you're going to find yourself in the minority on this one, Stoo.

As the arguments pro/con develop over time. Just my 2 cents at this stage in the game.

Chuckle...if someone were to say the Camp of KOTCS matches the Camp of High School Musical...that would be the death knell you'd have to concede to.

Personally, I'd like to see the anti-semite argument well postulated as a comparatory example, but I doubt anyone will even investigate, much less try.
Yikes. You'd "like to see the anti-semite argument well postulated"? I'll pretend I didn't read that. Is my opinion really that blasphemous to you? A better comparison would be: Indiana Jones is to Disney is what Wayne Gretzky was to the Los Angeles Kings. A sensational boon to the team but he wasn't born there!

Yes, so far, I'm in the minority in this thread but in 'real-life', other people I know have echoed the same sentiment: What does Indiana Jones (& Star Wars) have to do with Disney? Like you say, "All in the spirit of good fun" but (for the record) yourself & Attila are some of the Disney freaks I was talking about and your nuts will be hard to crack. By the way, where is roundshort?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Attila the Professor
I'm not sure that's relevant though, especially considering many of the Disney films are their own versions of earlier, often more gruesome stories. A film being made into theme park attractions doesn't seem all that far afield from the same principle.

Also, doubtlessly, there's something attractive to Lucas and Spielberg about having their films realized in another medium. (After all, Star Wars was also brought to life in Disney parks, and there's ET at Universal.)

Rocket's right, of course, that Eisner is a lot of it, especially since he was pivotal in the creation of the original film's deal at Paramount.

But it's also important to remember that it's far from the case that all of the attractions at the Disney theme parks originate in old Disney properties. Sure, that became the case later on, and has always been the case to some extent (Eisner sure didn't invent synergy). Indeed, some of them were clearly influenced by given films, with the Jungle Cruise having The African Queen all over it, and Frontierland, Main Street USA, and the Haunted Mansion have various films and genres all over them. (There was a stagecoach ride, for Pete's sake...)

Now, yes, the bringing - in of outside properties was a new development, sure. But it was an artistically fruitful one, especially in the case of the two Indiana Jones Adventure attractions, which are among the pinnacle examples of immersive theme park design they've come up with, from queue onward. (The stunt show's fun, and and so is Star Tours, but the Paris coaster has never sounded like anything all that special.)

Does the quality of the product make up for your concerns? Perhaps not. But I think it's a good thing both for the Disney parks and for the world of Indiana Jones.
As mentioned previously, the "Star Wars" ride is part & parcel of my argument.

Pre-1987, I can't think of any Disney attractions which are based on a story written only a decade or so before being built. Likewise, I don't know of any which bear the name of a film not made by Disney (that is, a film with an original story and not based on any book or folklore). Sure, The Jungle Cruise is an obvious homage to "The African Queen". One of the boats even has the name but the ride isn't called, "The African Queen". Haunted houses have been a mainstay since amusement parks first began and when the original, Anaheim park opened in '55, westerns were all the rage so having a section of the park dedicated to that genre was a no-brainer. The later parks copied the same formula. Which pre-'87 attractions were emblazoned with the name of a non-Disney film? None, right?

I suppose my main issue is my distaste for Disney's acquisition of licenses for products they did not create. It renders the whole idea of the parks into something too generic. As Rocket & yourself say, the finger points largely at Eisner. Where does it/will it stop before the parks should be simply called, "MovieLand" (or if you prefer, "Disney's Land of Movies & Fairytales")?
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Old 03-05-2011, 02:33 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rocket Surgeon
I think those two audiences are closer than either of us would like...

We've had the "is Indy a good role model discussion" before...and he surely did NOT start out as one. As the iconic role and move became a series, the questionable material made the jump away from Indy and to the villains. Indy became closer to a Disney hero with each outing.

Disney still retains the child friendly content but has matured to attract teens and (as the case with Pleasure Island) adults.

Indy softened enough to fit into this Disney evolution.
Of course the last 2 films have softened him up (especially "Skull") but, no matter how much Indy has changed to fit the Disney 'family' mould, the character wasn't created under its banner. If Indy 5 ever gets made, can we expect to see Cinderella's castle fade into the opening 'mountain shot' rather than the Paramount logo? It's certainly going that way...

As for Pale Horse's analogy of the "Skull" crowd = the "High School Musical" crowd...yes, I agree, it's much too close for comfort.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Inexorable Tash
Unfortunately, for whatever reason, most of the population of the planet seems to be more obsessed with entertainment in the form of sports, alcohol and politics. So, I'm grudgingly willing to accept that if there's going to be a place to dip into a thrill ride set in an ancient temple with a whip-weilding archaeologist, it's going to be bolted into the city block of Orange County ruled by the mouse.
"Grudgingly willing to accept", eh? It's a bitter pill to swallow...'Fess up, boy!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Montana Smith
All these things have probabaly happened in Disney cartoons (especially the violent shorts with the likes of Donald Duck) - if not Disney then Warner Brothers (Tom, & Jerry, Wile E. Coyote, etc). There was so much cartoon violence, which if turned into live-action becomes much more shocking.
Sorry, Smiffy, but that is a terrible argument. Firstly, Warner Bros. cartoons are irrelevant in this case (even though they were violent indeed)! Secondly, kiddie/family cartoons do not show blood. Thirdly, a man being shot in the head is a ghastly sight to see. In a cartoon, a character getting shot in the head ends up with a black face and no nose but he still lives. It's funny! In "Raiders", it is not.
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Old 03-05-2011, 02:54 PM   #23
Montana Smith
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Originally Posted by Stoo
Sorry, Smiffy, but that is a terrible argument.

I know. I just wanted to read your reaction!

I never did visualize any "wild, pre-marital sex" between Mickey and Minnie, nor Donald and Daisy.

The only bit I really meant was the last sentence: "There was so much cartoon violence, which if turned into live-action becomes much more shocking."

Some of that cartoon violence did transform into shocking imagery in Indiana Jones movies. More so in TOD, as, for me, the grand finale of ROTLA had a cartoon quality. The head shot and the vicious fight the German truck were harder. But the cartoon black comedy creeps in everywhere - propeller blades, rock crushers. All those nasty things that Disney animals have probably done to each other at some time or another.
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Old 03-05-2011, 03:16 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Le Saboteur
The bulk of Disneyland's attendance comes from Southern Californians with Annual Passes, and of that roughly half of that turnstile count are childless twenty & thirty-somethings. You obviously want to cater to that group since they have more money to spend than you're typical family of four.
I've only been to Walt Disney World in Orlando (1978 & 1982) and DisneyParis (April 2008) so I trust you on the present demographics of the Anaheim park. However, when I was at the Paris park in '08, it was overwhelmingly FAMILIES of TOURISTS. Children were everywhere and barely any French could be heard amongst them. (One can only guess what the Tokyo demographics are.)
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Originally Posted by Le Saboteur
The only person to blame for the "franchise capturing" that Disney has (or has not) been able to do is George Lucas. He's willfully ignored the franchise for twenty-plus years, and Disney is just about the only thing keeping Indy in the public consciousness.
Sabby-baby, I disagree with your 20+ years comment. The last Young Indy TV movie aired in '96 and the "Complete Adventures of Indiana Jones" was released on VHS a couple of years after that. Not exactly "willingfully ignored" for the past 20+ years.
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Originally Posted by Le Saboteur
I'm afraid that you're missing the broader comparison between Indy & Pirates, Stoo. I'm referring to the ride, not the movie; until Disney took the effort to upgrade the ride and make it slightly more mature (and to tie into the movie), it was ignored.
...snip...
As the demographic has shifted, so has the ride and the merchandise. It's slightly more risque, but still walking a very fine line.
You know more about that than I do so I'll give a humble bow...but maintain that "Pirates" is Disney property. Indy isn't. Plus, the Indy attractions started to appear, like, 2 decades before the "Pirates" films even began. Oh, my goodness...
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Originally Posted by Le Saboteur
What's more "Adventureland" than Indiana Jones? Not much I wager. So rather than design something that's only going to draw comparisons, why not go all out and acquire the license?
Because they didn't create the character, perhaps? Temple du Péril is a shameless PROSTITUTION of the Indiana Jones name. Apart from the coaster being similar to the mine carts in "Doom" there is NOTHING else related to Indy. As far as I can recall, there isn't even a fedora in the set-ups for the waiting line. They play Indy music at the entrance gate. Hooray.

"What's more Adventureland than Indiana Jones", you ask? SINDBAD! (For those not in the know, it is spelled that way.)...and he doesn't require a license! Agreed, Indy is a perfect 'fit' for any Adventureland but he ain't Disney produce. "Aye, there's the rub..."

P.S. Le Saboteur, I forgot to mention that you're one of the Disney freak crew I mentioned before!

Last edited by Stoo : 03-05-2011 at 03:33 PM. Reason: Addition of Le Saboteur being a Disney Freak
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Old 03-05-2011, 03:53 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by Stoo
I suppose my main issue is my distaste for Disney's acquisition of licenses for products they did not create. It renders the whole idea of the parks into something too generic. As Rocket & yourself say, the finger points largely at Eisner. Where does it/will it stop before the parks should be simply called, "MovieLand" (or if you prefer, "Disney's Land of Movies & Fairytales")?

Well, at WDW, Disney MGM Studios(now called Disney Hollywood Studios) which you mention in your post is precisely that(there's also a movie park in Disneyland Paris I believe). It's a celebration of Hollywood and movies(there are other references to non-Disney material) so Lucas seems like a perfect fit there to me.

You ask when will it stop, but really, beyond Lucas has it really progressed? Since Pixar is releasing hit after hit, most of the new attractions come from there. So its just really a non-issue.

Disney did buy Marvel, so I suppose we'll eventually see Marvel characters in the parks, but since they've been seen at Universal parks before that, it'll be quite a while before kids will be getting an Iron Man ride or getting Spider-man's autograph. And even then, I'm sure they'll only be place in proper places like Disney Hollywood Studios.

While I saw Star Wars prior the riding Star Tours, the Indiana Jones ride was the real reason I got into Indiana Jones. I know I'm not the only one with that experience, as Indiana Jones isn't as subversive as Star Wars is. So Disney gets some extra money from people who aren't into "Disney" as others as well as from the merchandise, while Lucas and Spielberg benefit by having their franchise have a life beyond just the movies(as well as probably making a dime from everyone who walks in the park or something).

I think you just need to accept that while you have reservations about it, that its mostly just you as there isn't really much to argue with. When the creators of this franchise are embracing it its only natural being against Indiana Jones' exposure to the parks is a minority among most fans.
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