Epcot: "Frozen" Attraction Opening Date and More News

Like it or not, Frozen is coming to Epcot. After Maelstrom's closure at the beginning of this month, all got quiet in regards to this project, and no real update has been shared in the past few weeks. Today, we would like to provide to you some news to break the silence on this "mystery project", hoping that the new pieces of information that we gathered will answer at least most of the questions you may have. All that you will read in this article has been confirmed.

While no visible work can be seen from Guests areas (the former entrance of Maelstrom is just blocked by regular doors), our sources confirmed that, new work walls were installed backstage just a few days ago, covering an area that is bigger than the building itself. Here is an image showing the size of the area now designated as a construction zone (no photos taken backstage were shared with us, as it is prohibited to take photos and videos from areas not open to Guests):

As you can see, the empty plot of land located on the left of the building is being used as part of this project. What we were NOT able to confirm is the nature of the work being done in that particular area. Will it be part of the new Anna & Elsa meet-and-greet area? Will it be the queue line for the new ride or an extension of the ride building itself? Your guesses are as good as ours.

In the past, some have speculated that there could be a remote possibility of having the ride system quickly swapped in favor of a new one. If you were among those hoping that this would be the case, you will be disappointed. In fact, it has been officially confirmed that the new Frozen-themed attraction will still be a boat ride, even though the ride vehicles will be new.

While the ride system will remain the same, the layout of the attraction will be expanded to create additional show scenes and to offer a longer experience to Guests, many of which were quite disappointed by the shortness of Maelstrom. While it has not been confirmed whether the backwards sections will be removed or not, you can be sure that the loading and unloading areas will change from the original. Also, the majority of the empty areas of the showbuilding will be used, as Imagineers try to maximize the space available to elongate the flume. Remember all that wasted space in the queue and ride? Well, that will change with the new ride. Spaces that were previously not used for the attraction will be included in the project. Basically, this new ride will follow the steps of the original Fantasyland dark-rides at Disneyland, which packed fairly elaborate attractions in a confined space.

The Walt Disney World Resort officially announced that the ride will debut in 2016. That is correct, the ride will indeed be open by 2016, but it could soft-open earlier than that. In fact, very reliable sources have confirmed to us that the current goal is to open the ride by the end of December 2015, just a few days before the start of the busy holiday season (*HINT - a one and a five were being thrown around... together*). That's right, this project should last just a little over a year (about 15 months), but that is if everything goes well. Keep in mind that opening dates for other new attractions have shifted multiple times in the past (see the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, for example), but we are pretty confident that they will be able to complete the project in time due to the fact that the ride system and the building itself should not receive major alterations.

This is all we have for the moment. As stated at the beginning of this article, these are confirmed news (unless otherwise noted), which we hope you will find of interest. Feel free to post your own comments and opinions on this subject.


  1. Thank you for the great information! This why we all appreciate you!

    Just judging by past projects, when do you think we could possibly see official concept art and hints about the interior released to the public?

  2. The plot of land that's behind the walls will most likely be a staging area for on site construction equipment. I hope the big D will keep on track with the opening date.

  3. @Anonymous: Thank you! We expect to see some concept art either before the holidays or right after them.

    @Construction Carl: You may be right, that is what we think as well. They need an area where to store all the equipment needed for this project after hours. That sounds the most likely situation.

  4. Feel as if this could have a been awesome if the ride system was trackless like Pooh's Hunny Hunt. But the ride should be awesome regardless.

  5. Hopefully We will see some concept art before the holidays. That why going into this year's holiday they can buzz about it on the 2014 Disney Parks Christmas Day Parade!

  6. I really hope to see the concept art for Frozen the ride in 2015!

  7. And now there's word that the Sorcerers Hat is definitely leaving! Woo hoo!

  8. We can be sure only of one thing: the ride will be cheap and LOOK cheap. It's just a cynical cash-in, as per Robert Iger's philosophy: soak the rubes and give as little as possible in return.

  9. Agreed this ride is going to be a cheap replacement from the Maelstrom's original concept. Maelstrom had more character. (Think the original test track, now just being dark lighting with cheap cardboard walls with projectors)

  10. So will the pavilion still be called Norway? I don't think a story based in Denmark is "close enough" to represent a country.
    Perhaps they could call the pavilion Scandinavia or the Nordic Pavilion?

  11. "Cheap", right...because the Maelstrom sets and figures were so detailed and lifelike...right.
    It's okay to not like Frozen, believe me, everyone gets it by now. It's just a little ridiculous to call it cheap when not one bit of conceptual art has even surfaced yet. I'm surprised Meg hasn't been blamed yet.

  12. I agree with Construction Carl, that area will likely be the staging area for the construction. Anyone know of a diagram or floor plan (blueprint) of the existing ride and theater layout? I've been looking around since the announcement and haven't found anything of real merit. Being and architect myself I'm really curious and always like to play armchair imagineer...

  13. I hope the empty area to be used is just for staging. Otherwise the ride would be taking up part of a future expansion slot for a possible new country.


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