Fans Petition Disney Parks To Change Splash Mountain Theme
In the midst of the call for racial justice in response to George Floyd’s death, Americans are reevaluating various institutions in the country that could be interpreted as culturally problematic. It’s no secret that Disney’s Song of the South has been breeding controversy for decades now, but one element of the film that hasn’t been examined fully is its accompanying ride, Splash Mountain. The log flume ride originally opened in Disneyland in 1989, followed by a 1992 Walt Disney World debut. While Splash Mountain tends to ignore themes of race and focus more on its woodland animal characters and swampy setting, many believe its source material is severely outdated. And since Splash Mountain was originally built to appeal to teens and young adults, why keep it tied to a film released in 1946?
One Twitter user has a suggestion that could remedy this situation — re-theming the ride without removing it entirely. That new theme? The Princess and the Frog. The idea has gained enough attention to inspire a Change.org petition. Check out this Twitter thread that lays the entire plan out visually:
There’s so many reasons why a Princess and the Frog-themed Splash Mountain would be a fantastic idea. First off, Disneyland’s Critter Country is adjacent to New Orleans Square, where it’s already common to see Princess Tiana and Prince Naveen strolling about. Plus, Splash Mountain’s current decor could easily be adjusted to fit the bayou backdrop of Princess and the Frog. Perhaps the biggest revelation from the above thread is that the Laughing Place could be swapped out for Dr. Facilier’s voodoo-filled Other Side.
Re-theming rides isn’t a new concept for the Disney Parks. In fact, it’s necessary to keep the attractions feeling current. The 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea submarine voyage was replaced with a Finding Nemo themed ride. The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror in Disney’s California Adventure was remodeled with a Guardians of the Galaxy theme following the release of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. The Disney Parks are an ever-changing landscape, and re-theming Splash Mountain feels like a natural step in the right direction.
Gallery — Movie Theme Park Rides That Were Never Built: