Bob Chapek Confirms Disney Will Overhaul Epcot

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While no details were provided as of yet, Bob Chapek alluded to an overhaul of Epcot at Walt Disney World today at the Destination D event.

SPACESHIP-EARTH-MURAL-2

Chapek stated that he was telling Imagineers to “dream big” in fixing the park. Bob also stated that changes and additions will be “Disney, timeless, relevant, and family friendly”. He also stated that Epcot would remain true to its original vision.

More details will be shared at a later time, Disney was not ready to talk about the project just yet.

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]

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Jeff
Guest
Jeff

Wow, great news Disney

Ryan
Guest
Ryan

Disney listening to fans! I must be dreaming!

Andrea
Guest
Andrea

You’re no dreaming. Just based on history it is just propaganda. Unless they fired a HECK of a lot of their management who would never let this happen the way he’s selling it.

captain obvious
Guest
captain obvious

senior management report to Iger who report to the board who report to the stockholders….so firing senior management won’t help at all…they do what they are told from higher ups…I wish we lived in a world where money didn’t rule everything but we don’t so lets stop pretending we do.

WWWD (What Would Walt Do?)
Guest
WWWD (What Would Walt Do?)

This is why capitalism sucks. Wall Street can go crash like 1929 again.

Cheryl D.
Guest
Cheryl D.

Yea, not biting on the ‘promises’. Disney hasn’t changed anything in years who’s primary goal wasn’t sales or cross promotion or cut staffing needs. I love the Disney brand, and will believe this one when I see it. Once it hits the politic swamp of WDW Florida management, it will be trimmed to the bone. I vision anything not a revenue center being removed if they do anything at all. Disney Springs has made our need for Epcot diminish. Restaurants at both places run by 3rd party, but Disney Springs the 3rd parties run it, not Disney. Much better. That… Read more »

Keith
Guest
Keith

Agreed….it is time to drain the swamp!

Andrea
Guest
Andrea

To believe this will be a step in direction that improves anything for a guest or fellow D23 member requires that Florida has legal marijuana. Wait. that happened! :) I sure hope I’m wrong too, and Disney pulls of one that makes their Florida and California theme parks in line with the rest of their business.

Trumpy, you can do stupid things!
Guest
Trumpy, you can do stupid things!

So by Trump’s definition of that statement: “Don’t change anything after telling everyone what they wanted to hear”

Decker
Guest
Decker

Article isn’t about US president…move on…

Larry
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Larry

Disney makes great movies, but SUCKS at theme parks. Why not build a new park before renovating this dinosaur? And recent renovations haven’t been that impressive. In last decade, they changed movie at Soarin’ and overlay in Maelstrom to sell Frozen merchandise. They’re not doing well. They wonder why their stock sucks.

Curtis
Guest
Curtis

Another stupid comment by Larry, Thanks we can always count on dumb comments by you

captain obvious
Guest
captain obvious

yes there theme parks suck so much that they are the most popular in the world… Stock prices are largely unchanged recently.

The Costello Show
Guest
The Costello Show

Put Don Jr. in charge! He’ll show those eastern elitist fruits what’s what! Make EPCOT great again! Bigly!

Andrea
Guest
Andrea

No, let Asia run our parks and only consult Disney. THEN I’d believe something great will come of it.

Trumpy, you can do stupid things!
Guest
Trumpy, you can do stupid things!

Those clowns couldn’t even get the security clearance for the Club Cool

rebeccamck
Guest
rebeccamck

Don Sr. was always saying “big league” (I had subtitles on a few times while watching him talk – he doesn’t pronounce or enunciate very well sometimes), not “bigly.” Anyway, good luck to Epcot.

Corbin Davenport
Guest
Corbin Davenport

This will either be the revival of EPCOT Center, or the final nail in the coffin. Either way, at least the park will finally get some attention.

Andrea
Guest
Andrea

So true Corbin! I pray for the revival, but Disney hasn’t even hit the ball in a while, much less gotten on base with their theme parks. They definitely can make it worse on refurb. btw, you’re cute :)

JimV
Guest
JimV

The sponsorship model is already dead for at least a decade. Its a revival of a new Epcot. The name shouldn’t be remain Epcot either.

Anonomouse
Guest
Anonomouse

The final nail in the coffin? It’s not exactly on the verge of shutting down. The only thing they’ll do is make Food and Wine last from September 16th to September 15th.

D23 member
Guest
D23 member

It is actually underperforming to their expectations by far. I know you stand in huge lines to pay premiums, but their expectations on your spending are enormous. Disney isn’t happy with their theme parks division. Don’t believe me? Look up the annual report meeting info that is public. I can only imagine what they say behind closed doors. Problem is..they’re missing the point…when they cut experience to the guest, they lose in the end too, just like us fans.

Jeff
Guest
Jeff

I think this imminent announcement was pretty obvious considering how long they have been putting off new projects at Epcot. Typically when you don’t see a park get a real new attraction for so long its because they’re holding out for a major re-invigoration of some sort (as evidenced previously with MK, DTD, AK, and DHS, all of which didn’t get changed for a long time then started building a lot at once).

Decker
Guest
Decker

Ummmm, I’d like to believe you Jeff. But I have a brain and eyes to see what Disney has done lately. Their refurbishments have all been to cut attractions and make stores, very little added real estate for enjoyment sake, if any. ALL of the refurbs you mention of were primarily restaurants and stores. Hopefully I’m wrong here and this guy can Chapek can clean house and make change. I really would like to see some breath put into the parks.

Andrea
Guest
Andrea

Not really Jeff. They put in new movie and redid Norway ride (albeit, neither a new attraction). They have shut down more rides in Hollywood Studios than they will replace. That’s not progress.

Jeff
Guest
Jeff

They have shut down all those attractions at DHS to replace them with Toy Story & Star Wars Land, both of which have “rides.”

They redid Maelstrom into Frozen because they already had billions of dollars planned for new attractions over the next decade and couldn’t add another major new land, but they wanted a Frozen ride, so Maelstrom got the axe. It also brings a ton of people to Epcot. Big deal.

justin
Guest
justin

Nope, incorrect. Each area gets one ride. The rest is stores in food. Won’t even replace what they took away Jeff. They redid Frozen to sell merchandise, and there is ZERO budget for “new”, much less a billion dollars. You need to get into rehab for your drug problem if or your head out of your rectum.

captain obvious
Guest
captain obvious

wrong wrong wrong…they already have stated that each new themed land will get 2 rides… not one, nice try troll

Jeff
Guest
Jeff

And on top of that why shouldn’t parks get rid of attractions that are outdated and suck? That is progress.

Justin
Guest
Justin

You missed the point. Removing Stunt Show and Back Lot Movie Tour with Catastrophe canyon and replacing it with baked potato stands with Star Wars theme and Disney run restaurants and stores isn’t progress to most. If they redo Epcot, Soarin’ and Test Track may go, in interest of something that sells Disney merchandise, that won’t be progress, and is conceivable with current WDW mindset. I like Disney too much for that to happen.

captain obvious
Guest
captain obvious

oh really??? what did they close in DHS?? lights motor and backlot tour… one was a show the other was a backlot tour of a closed studio…..not very fun…each land will have 2 signature rides,so they are replacing 2 rides with 4..hardly seems like 4 is less than 2 but maybe my math is wrong and in some weird world 4 is less than 2.

Lenny
Guest
Lenny

It would certainly be awesome to refurb Epcot but if they aren’t releasing any “real” info then I’d rather they not say anything. Epcot has suffered for so long. Future world is really just soarin and test track. The other rides are just fill. Journey, universe, living seas and spaceship earth all need overhauls, BIG overhauls. Body wars has sat closed for years and years. I’m not holding my breathe but I’d truly be happy to one day see this amazing park get some love from disney and bring it back to what it was supposed to be!

Jean Shepard
Guest
Jean Shepard

#RebuildHorizons

captain obvious
Guest
captain obvious

#pleaseno #outwiththeoldinwiththenew

WWWD (What Would Walt Do?)
Guest
WWWD (What Would Walt Do?)

#outwiththenewbackinwiththeold

Marc Brousseau
Guest
Marc Brousseau

#REBUILDHORIZONS !!!

Patty
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Patty

#NotHappeningIfItDoesntMakeDisneyMoreMoney

Grammar Gil
Guest
Grammar Gil

Doesn’t make Disney more what? If you’re going to be snarky, at least complete your sentence.

james
Guest
james

this is a refreshing update, Epcot is my favorite park! fingers crossed

Anonomouse
Guest
Anonomouse

Thanks Disney PR intern!

LTT
Guest
LTT

The comments on this site never fail to amaze…….

Really?
Guest
Really?

The wasted time to post something about comments when brining nothing to the conversation never fails to amaze.

LTT
Guest
LTT

Took me 2 seconds to write that comment. But nice try…

Anonomouse
Guest
Anonomouse

Ha!

Anonomouse
Guest
Anonomouse

That took 1 second, I win the speed posting contest!

Nancy
Guest
Nancy

But only half a second to prove you’re a dumb, thoughtless idiot! Congratulations.

LTT
Guest
LTT

“dumb, thoughtless idiot”…how petty and weak. Recognizing that 95% of the comments on this site are ‘the sky is falling’ is “dumb”? Just a simple observation that proves itself time and time again. Thus, “the comments on this site never fail to amaze”. You’ve all proved my point.

If people are so miserable with the Disney product, perhaps their time and money is better spent on other things.

Ariel fan
Guest
Ariel fan

I hope Chapek is right, but he really doesn’t have the authority or budget to do it. I’m all for out with the old, and in with the new, but I fear their “refurbishment” might kill more rides and attractions, and more stores and eateries, if it happens at all. Many past managers said new countries to be added. All BS in the end, they used one of the spaces for a meet and greet for Frozen.

Mind me
Guest
Mind me

‘He also stated that Epcot would remain true to its original vision’, which basically means that external companies need to sponsor and pay for the renovation……

Jonathon Gomez
Guest
Jonathon Gomez

This about when sponsorship was King at EPCOT Now think about when it went south? Trump will make EPCOT great again!

Stitch Fanatic
Guest
Stitch Fanatic

EPCOT is the place to go…during the food and wine festival. I found myself there nearly my whole stay because of it and will only plan my visits during that time frame. I do think it needs a face lift though I hope they keep things the same as well. It’s not Epcot without the ‘big golf ball’, Illumination (or some huge night show), and the nations of the world. I do think more rides need to be added around the nations, Imagination needs to be reworked or at least go back to the original ride, and redo Agent P’s… Read more »

Jonathon Gomez
Guest
Jonathon Gomez

I’d be happy it they would just put in a few trees. The place is nothing more than a brick oven.

Stitch Fanatic
Guest
Stitch Fanatic

Oh they have trees, just look for the smoking areas.

WWWD (What Would Walt Do?)
Guest
WWWD (What Would Walt Do?)

That fat bald loser Chapek needs to get off Walt’s lawn and never show his face again. If Disney really wants to fix Epcot, they can bring back an all new Horizons and Dreamfinder. As for World of Motion, that’s tough because the original Test Track was a learning experience as well. Take Epcot back to its roots and push edutainment. To those who complain they don’t want to learn while on vacation, you’re a major part of the reason why this country lags behind the rest of the world in education and its your fault. Walt famously said “it’s… Read more »

Yaskara
Guest
Yaskara

Ill have to agree with you. I remember being 9 years old and LOVING Epcot during my first visit. So much to learn! So much to explore and see! And now is just… yay for Nemo, yay for the Spaceship Earth and done. Bring back those learning centers! I’m not a eat/drink around the world person, but I used to love being able to explore the countries! Bring more cultural experiences! More countries! They don’t even have to do much, just do more of what they did in the past.

Anonomouse
Guest
Anonomouse

Wow you must have been a boring 9 year old.

Yaskara
Guest
Yaskara

I probably was. I was a nerd. I am a nerd. But 16 years later after that first visit I am not a doctor who can afford to three or more (international) visits to WDW a year. And my love for Disney started back then. But interactive learning is hype right now, it should be explored.

Yaskara
Guest
Yaskara

Now*

WWWD (What Would Walt Do?)
Guest
WWWD (What Would Walt Do?)

I don’t HATE Nemo the way some do but I wouldn’t mind if SeaBase Alpha returned. At the very least the Living Seas pavilion stile does have some educational aspects. I also wouldn’t mind seeing a British Invasion exhibit in the UK with statues of John, Paul, George, and Ringo outside and a replica of Freddie Mercury’s statue in Montreaux overlooking World Showcase lagoon. Frozen Ever After belongs in New Fantasyland, too.

JimV
Guest
JimV

Sorry. That Epcot is dead. Figment should not be revived. Imagination is an insult. Horizons can never return. Edutainment is not working anymore. No one pays for a dumbed down 3rd grade lesson. It’s boring. They need to theme Future World as fully realized lands instead of stark modern structures. You say if they can dream it, then you won’t let them. They can’t be boxed in.

WWWD (What Would Walt Do?)
Guest
WWWD (What Would Walt Do?)

Shame on you. That Epcot is far from dead and not only could be brought back, but it could work too. None of the messages back then were “dumbed down,” the messages today are. I’d pay to learn any day of the year. It’s people like you that are contributing to ignorance and stupidity in this country. Horizons absolutely could return in a new form and the original Imagination would still be a hit today.

JimV
Guest
JimV

You’re being contradictory. You say you’ll pay for the messages as if they are educational, yet also call people ignorant and stupid if they are unwilling to learn. Give people some credit for not buying into your idea of Epcot before Disney sinks millions of dollars into remaking the park. Imagination wouldn’t be a hit. The original never had a line beyond a 5 minute wait. Horizons wasn’t any more popular. They are a waste. It’s time to move on. Disney should continue to preserve their original classic attractions like Spaceship Earth, but that’s about it.

WWWD (What Would Walt Do?)
Guest
WWWD (What Would Walt Do?)

Who gives a **** if those attractions didn’t have long waits? That just means less time in line for me and others who want to be inspired. If I ran Disney, Epcot would go back to its original mission and purpose and to make sure people like it, I’d have Imagineering develop brainwashing technology for the attractions so that guests would be zombified and brainwashed into liking it. I’d literally take over guests minds, forcing Epcot’s mission on them against their will.

JimV
Guest
JimV

You’re a scary person. You’ll brain wash people? That’s the opposite of inspiring people. You’re sick too. Dumb and arrogant.

Nancy
Guest
Nancy

So true! USA is becoming the dumbest and fattest nation on Earth sadly. Look at some of the comments! People arguing how amazing Disney is with their theme parks, when the same idiots have been jipped off for the last decade plus, without even knowing it as Disney cuts EVERYTHING to the bone. Same fools keep saying over and over about new areas, updates to parks, when no new experience has been added that isn’t a sales point to rip them off. What about a fun ride like Haunted Mansion? Maybe Expedition Everest? Anything for learning like the original Epcot.… Read more »

JimV
Guest
JimV

People are willing to pay to see Epcot that mainly has the Food and Wine. This is their decision and so what? It doesn’t matter. Learning exhibits don’t matter anymore. If you’re not happy, you don’t have to go. WDW is worth an once every 5 year visit anyways so there’s little money lost if you don’t visit much.

Peter
Guest
Peter

JimV, so you don’t care about the potential the parks could be, or how now it’s a lousy food and wine event and nothing more, some do, thus their posts. your recommendations of when and how often people should visit are also kinda lame.

JimV
Guest
JimV

Peter: stop complaining. Epcot is doing fine. It’s potential is whatever they decide. It isn’t more of what it was. Stop imagining it is a bigger deal than the lofty lame concepts it was before.

TDonald
Guest
TDonald

I loved that…I know this is a old thread but I want to make people aware that Walt Disney was reincarnated…a book is being written called “Behind the Souls Looking Glass.” Bob Chapek actually stole my idea for naming the new Star Wars land…Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge. Proof will be in the book. I posted it on their FB page & my FB page as documentation (my account is no longer open due to security issues but I took pictures)…2 months later Bob Chapek announced the name and gave me…the soul of Walt Disney no credit. Bob Chapek will be… Read more »

rebeccamck
Guest
rebeccamck

EPCOT – Every Park Changes Over Time

rpmx33
Guest
rpmx33

#MEGA (make Epcot great again)

Echo
Guest
Echo

Is it bad that it’s the first word in the quote that scares me?
“Disney, timeless, relevant, and family friendly”

The word “edutainment” or even educational were also conspicuously lacking.

Gregory N. Baker
Guest
Gregory N. Baker

tl;dr – Despite the complaints of old farts, Chapek’s new Epcot will be a group of random IPs because that is what is profitable. On some other boards, Chapek’s renovation of Epcot is called “IPcot” for IP or intellectual property. Let me summarize what I see as two sides to this issue. The first are people who want to see EPCOT Center return to its former glory as a place where the dreams of the Future World and the promise of global cooperation are Showcased around the World. Essentially, a permanent World’s Fair. They want Disney to double down on… Read more »