Hall of Presidents Details Emerge

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From Dewayne Bevil of the Orlando Sentinel:


Had a mini-sneak-peek at the revamped Hall of Presidents this afternoon at Magic Kingdom. Showing us around — but not the whole presentation — was Eric Jacobson, senior vice president at Walt Disney Imagineering. Here are some tidbits he shared about HoP, which is set to reopen officially on July 4:

+ The front room/pre-show has been reorganized a bit. Some of the presidential portraits have been replaced, and the imagery has quotations beneath them. A new display area features dresses from three first ladies: Elizabeth Monroe, Edith Roosevelt (Mrs. Teddy) and Nancy Reagan. (The silk dresses of Monroe and Roosevelt are reproductions).

+ Reagan sent a selection.  “Mrs. Reagan actually — at the Reagan Library — picked out six dresses for us to rotate through the collection,” Jacobson says. “She picked them out herself.” Her outfit will change every six months, but she’ll start off in a black-sequined number. The gown area is flexible. “Maybe some day we’ll have one of Michelle Obama’s outfits in here,” Jacobson says.

+ New wording has been placed on an interior wall. It now reads “Welcome to the Hall of Presidents, a Celebration of Liberty’s Leaders.” Outside, the building gets its first marquee (still covered, as seen in photo above. Photo by Joe Burbank, shot Tuesday.) (Previously, there was merely a sign in the planter.)

+ The film, now narrated by Morgan Freeman, is a bit trimmer, and the Animatronic section expanded. “That’s what they [park guests] come to see,” Jacobson says.

+ The emphasis of the attraction is more about the history of the presidency and the presidents as people. Before, it was more of a history lesson, and this change will help distinguish the Hall from the American Adventure presentation at Epcot.

+ The film still will end with the Space Shuttle as the curtain rises to reveal the presidents.

About the author

Tom Corless

Tom has been regularly visiting the Walt Disney World® Resort from the time he was 4 months old. While he has made countless visits in the last 28 years, he did not become a truly active member in the Disney fan community until the summer of 2007, when he decided to launch the WDW News Today website and podcast. Tom has since become an Orlando-local and is a published author on Walt Disney World.
Contact Tom at [email protected]