Princess Tiana, Bayou Adventure, Disney

Disney’s Princess Tiana Welcomes New Animatronics At Her Bayou Adventure

The attraction is set to open this summer.

Princess Tiana’s upcoming attraction at Walt Disney World and Resort has welcomed some familiar faces to the bayou, according to a recent video from Disney. The company showcased new audio-animatronics of iconic characters from the movie including Mama Odie and Louis as part of Tiana’s Bayou Adventure.

“When we start working on audio-animatronics for any attraction, you start back at the story because the story is key and we figure out what a character will do and each individual scene is built off of that.,” said Avi Tuchman, principal show programmer at Walt Disney Imagineering. 

Disney released a first look at the creations in a new series titled “We Call It Imagineering,” which premiered on April 4 on YouTube and offers fans a glimpse of what goes into bringing these characters to life. 

“When you see the character in person, you believe they are the character you’ve seen on screen, and they could and can do anything that you’ve seen there to really make you feel fully immersed in that world and in their story,” Tuchman continued. 

The characters’ realistic designs and animated movements are essential parts to crafting the whimsical illusion that has captivated visitors since Disney first introduced animatronics in 1963. 

“We really try to think of what Louis is as a character. He’s a very jolly character. We want to make him appear as happy as possible and a big part of that is having his belly joyfully move up and down,” explained Jessica Baskergow, who is also a show programmer at Imagineering. 

Tiana’s Bayou Adventure has tapped several people to make this attraction as magical as possible, some of them from Louisiana including blacksmith Darryl Reeves who built the attraction’s new weathervane and artist Malaika Favorite, who created a painting in celebration of Disney’s first and only Black princess. 

“To think of all of the people that will see this piece really means, for me, to amplify the sort of message and love of our ancestors that have given us these symbols through ironwork so long,” said Karina Roca, a welder who is Reeves’ apprentice and helped pay homage to both Louisiana’s heritage and Tiana’s legacy with the weathervane.

Tiana’s Bayou Adventure is scheduled to be unveiled in summer 2024.

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