Sunday, May 17, 2009

Toy Story Mania! Coming to the Wii

BURBANK, Calif., (March 24, 2009) Disney Interactive Studios today announced Toy Story Mania!, inspired by the Disney/Pixar animated feature "Toy Story," will be released exclusively for the Wii home video game console this fall. Toy Story Mania! showcases an array of entertaining games based on the new Disneyland Resort and Walt Disney World Resort attractions, while featuring the iconic characters and humor from the popular Disney/Pixar "Toy Story" franchise.

"The 'Toy Story' franchise is a fun, dynamic and heart-warming series containing characters and themes that connect with every age group," said Craig Relyea, senior vice president of global marketing, Disney Interactive Studios. "Toy Story Mania! combines those popular elements with the unique antics of the new theme park attraction for the ultimate in family entertainment."

In Toy Story Mania!, players experience the fast-paced, zany fun of the Toy Story Mania! theme park attraction, which is an interactive experience requiring 3D glasses and involving rapid or quick-firing shooting galleries. In addition to galleries adapted from the attraction, the game includes new and original galleries and a series of mini games, all hosted by beloved characters from the movies. The thematically-connected levels are designed for up to four players of all ages with competitive and co-operative multiplayer options. Toy Story Mania! also includes bonus 3D features, transforming the game experience with eye-popping visuals.

The Pixar-created "Toy Story" and "Toy Story 2" have both had successful box office and DVD sales. The Disney Digital 3D™ theatrical re-release of "Toy Story" is in the works and will open in theatres on October 2, 2009, followed by the 3D re-release of "Toy Story 2" opening on February 12, 2010, leading up to the premiere of "Toy Story 3" in 3D summer 2010. Toy Story Mania! is the first video game to place characters from these films into a carnival game setting and is expected to resonate with fans of the films and the attraction, as well as gamers who like pick-up-and-play party games

Developed by Papaya Studio, Toy Story Mania! will be available this fall exclusively for Wii.

Disney Vacation Club Resorts Offer New Themed Adventures Just in Time for Summer Travel

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. – Three highly anticipated resort developments will expand the Walt Disney World vacation experience and continue the rapid growth of Disney Vacation Club, Disney’s innovative vacation-ownership program:

  • the African-inspired Kidani Village opened May 2009 with additional villas scheduled to open fall 2009
  • the Treehouse Villas at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa, scheduled to open in summer 2009, will become the next room category offered at that resort
  • the 15-story Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort is scheduled to join the Disney Vacation Club family of properties by fall 2009.

“Our founder, Walt Disney, was well-known for having one foot in the past and one in the future,” said Disney Vacation Club President Jim Lewis. “These new resort developments share that dynamic sensibility, blending modern luxury and design with nostalgic spirit.”

The developments come during an unprecedented era of growth for Disney Vacation Club, established in 1991 to give families decades of affordable vacations at Disney destinations and beyond. Disney Vacation Club membership has more than doubled since 2004, expanding to include more than 400,000 individuals from approximately 100 countries and every U.S. state.

Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas – Kidani Village

The newly opened Kidani Village, located at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge, offers guests African-inspired details and home-like accommodations and amenities. Many vacation villas will also feature sweeping views of an expanded savannah inhabited by a variety of African animals.

The Kidani Village development includes Sanaa, a table-service restaurant celebrating African-inspired cuisine with an Indian touch; Samawati Springs Pool, a themed pool area; Uwanja Camp, a themed water-play area; Survival of the Fittest, a fitness center; Johari Treasures, a merchandise shop, and more. The remaining rooms and amenities are scheduled for a fall 2009 opening. Upon its completion, Kidani Village is planned to include 340 two-bedroom equivalent vacation villas, for a total of 449 two-bedroom equivalent accommodations at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Villas.

Jambo House, which includes 109 remodeled two-bedroom equivalent accommodations on the fifth and sixth floors of Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge, opened in July 2007.

Treehouse Villas at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa

Meanwhile, nestled in natural forest glens just around the riverbend from the bustling Downtown Disney area, Treehouse Villas at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa will mark the newest phase of what has become the largest Disney Vacation Club resort.

This new phase will revive Walt Disney World “treehouse living,” a cherished tradition from 1975-2002. While crews are replacing villas of the ‘70s with brand-new vacation homes, Imagineers took special care to honor the original octagonal design.

The construction process itself was unique as each stand-alone treehouse villa came together like a giant 3-D puzzle to ensure both superior quality and environmental sensitivity.

All 60 three-bedroom homes, elevated 10 feet off the ground on pedestals and beams designed to blend into the forest environment, sleep nine and offer modern luxuries such as cathedral ceilings, granite countertops and flat-screen TVs, all presented in a style dubbed “cabin casual.”

“I was lucky enough to have a treehouse as a kid, but it was certainly nothing like this,” said Imagineer Todd Thomasson. “In developing this resort, we’ve all learned a new word, ‘glamping,’ which apparently means glamorous camping. Treehouse Villas will be glamping at its absolute best.”

Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort

The new, curvilinear Bay Lake Tower at Disney’s Contemporary Resort is designed to complement the fabled styling of the original building, which opened with Magic Kingdom on Oct. 1, 1971. Drawing on the color palette and strong horizontal lines of its iconic predecessor, the new structure even sports a rooftop lounge inspired by the original resort’s A-frame architecture.

The tower’s crescent shape, hugging lush landscaping, planned recreation options and a lakeside pool, promises to deliver some of the most dramatic views available anywhere at Walt Disney World Resort. Some villas face scenic, undeveloped stretches of Bay Lake, while others offer spectacular views of Magic Kingdom, located a short walk away.

Inside the tower’s 295 two-bedroom-equivalent villas, visionary design meets Disney chic to define the vacation experience. As the closest resort to Magic Kingdom, Bay Lake Tower guests can easily return to their rooms for quick breaks from their busy day in the park, where they can relax in an inspiring setting offering many of the conveniences of home.

Most of the rooms will feature innovative touches, such as modern artwork designed specifically for Bay Lake Tower, flat-screen TVs, full kitchens complete with granite countertops and modern appliances, separate bedrooms, washers and dryers, and other home-like amenities. Plus, to accommodate larger families or families traveling together, many Bay Lake Tower vacation villas are designed to sleep up to nine, though some units can also be divided into one-bedroom villas that sleep five and studios that accommodate four, creating flexible options for smaller groups.

Add to the plans a spacious lobby filled with woven woods and glass-wrapped columns, sweeping views from a rooftop lounge and fireworks viewing deck, and the convenience of a sky bridge linking families to shops, restaurants and the monorail station.

Overnight guests seeking these accommodations as Disney Deluxe vacation rentals may call 407/W-DISNEY, or through travel agents or

Disney Vacation Club is owned by Disney Vacation Development Inc., part of the magic of The Walt Disney Company. To learn more, visit