PHOTOS, VIDEO: Work Visible on Former Site of Removed Trader Sam Figure as Jungle Cruise Changes Continue at the Magic Kingdom

Gnu things are happening at the world-famous Jungle Cruise at the Magic Kingdom! As we reported earlier this week, you could say Trader Sam lost his head… and the rest of his body as the animatronic was removed completely. Trader Sam’s departure is part of ongoing changes to address cultural issues surrounding the ride.


Netting covers the site where Trader Sam used to stand, now rearranged to cover the progressing work.


Crews appear to be working on the scene overnight.


Trader Sam will not be the only scene changed on the Jungle Cruise.

While these changes may take the wind out of the sails of many Disney fans, others have been calling for changes to the Jungle Cruise in light of new societal efforts to remove remnants of racial stereotyping.

Those calling for these changes cite the adage “Disneyland is not a museum” (which is applied to Walt Disney World) in defense of those opposing the changes to maintain historical portions of attractions. The Florida Trader Sam character was specifically created by legendary Disney Imagineer Marc Davis and has been a staple of the ride for nearly 50 years.

Trader Sam was a portrayal of a headhunter selling shrunken heads. This practice can be dated back to the early 1900s, and by the 1930s, the sale of shrunken heads was largely prohibited. The ritual was primarily a religious practice for several indigenous cultures, and most heads sold to tourists and museums were actually fake. For those in favor of the removal, Trader Sam’s portrayal is often represented as a perpetuation of the stereotype of indigenous cultures as “savages.”

Stay tuned to WDWNT for more updates on the changes coming to the Jungle Cruise.

For more information on booking your next trip with our official travel agent sponsor, the Vacationeer, visit

3 2 votes
Article Rating
Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Prince Naveen
Prince Naveen
13 days ago

And the woke changes, as Disney brands as “refurbishments” or “enhancements,” begin. So long, the Jungle Cruise we know and love…

12 days ago
Reply to  Prince Naveen

Perhaps they will swap Trader Sam with an obese white guy on a recliner with a vape, big gulp and disposed McDonalds wrappers on the ground below

12 days ago

Trader Sam could return in a different disguise or outfit