Imagineer Shares How Patrick Warburton Was Cast in “Soarin'” Pre-show

Shannen Ace

Imagineer Shares How Patrick Warburton Was Cast in “Soarin'” Pre-show

Shannen Ace

Imagineer Shares How Patrick Warburton Was Cast in “Soarin'” Pre-show

Imagineer Jim Clark shared on Twitter this week how Patrick Warburton became the flight attendant on Disney California Adventure’s famous Soarin’ attraction.

According to Clark, with only two months left until the opening of Disney California Adventure, the pre-show for Soarin’ still wasn’t complete. John Travolta, as a pilot himself, was meant to play the main character. The flight attendant character was briefly named Sandy, Clark said. The name may have been a nod to the character name of Travolta’s “Grease” co-star, Olivia Newton-John.

Unfortunately, Travolta’s filming schedule was making it difficult. Plus he had a beard that the Imagineers didn’t like.

The team then went to a screening of The Emperor’s New Groove, which was released December 15, 2000. The Imagineers loved Kronk, who was voiced by Patrick Warburton. Not only did they choose to cast Warburton, but they expanded the role for him as well. Almost 20 years later, Patrick the flight attendant can still be seen in the re-worked Soarin’ Around the World at both Disney California Adventure and EPCOT.

Watch our full POV video of Soarin’ Around the World at EPCOT below.

Do you prefer Patrick Warburton or do you wish we had seen John Travolta in the flight attendant role? Let us know in the comments.

18 thoughts on “Imagineer Shares How Patrick Warburton Was Cast in “Soarin'” Pre-show”

  1. Patrick was TOTALLY the right call. Or family repeats this word for word while we’re standing in line for Soarin’

  2. I love that Kronk is our flight attendant! I think about it every time I ride Soarin at EPCOT! Pretty cool insight here

  3. Warburton is fantastic in that role. He pretty much eats up the camera in every role though. My personal favorite is his turn as Principal Steve Barkin in Disney’s animated series Kim Possible. I hope he remains in the Soarin’ preshow for years to come.

  4. To our family, Patrick is a part of the Soarin’ ride experience and we look forward to seeing and hearing his distinctive voice each time we visit CA Adventure. We have his dialog memorized and laugh along with others in line while watching. We just re-watched The Emperor’s New Groove last night, and he is a big reason why. Please never change the safety video, and if you do, please cast Patrick again. He is the king of Soarin’!

  5. WE ABSOLUTELY LOVE PATRICK WARBURTON IN THE FLIGHT ATTENDANT INTRO! We always look forward to the preshow before boarding the flight because of Patrick’s delivery. Patrick has a great theatrical presence. He is super funny in a charming way. Although I’m am positive my family would have loved and appreciated the Travolta intro with the “Grease” twist… there still is no beating the now iconic preshow performance of Patrick Warburton.

  6. Patrick warburton is by far the best choice. He actually seems like a professional flight attendant, while I love John Travolta, he brings to many other characters to mind when I see him

  7. I love Soarin’ on both coasts. Its one of the rides i look forward to the most, but if they ever replaced Patrick Im not sure it would ever be the same. If anything, have him record an outro for when we’re leaving. 😁

  8. Most certainly Warburton! As a family, we reenact the pre flight spiel. He was and is the perfect flight attendant…

  9. I prefer having Warburton all the way.
    There were a lot of weird celebrity cameos they had in California Adventure when it first opened, and a lot of them just kinda made me roll my eyes. Warburton actually made it feel like a character, and his connection to a beloved Disney character made him feel like part of “the family” if that makes sense.

  10. Patrick Warburton did such a great job as Patrick the flight attendant, I am glad he got the role and it would be hard to imaging Soarin’ without him. I understand the logic of John Travolta as a real life pilot and aviation enthusiast, but Warburton brings extra humor and a great stage presence / gravitas. I think having Warburton just works better.

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