In our interview with former Imagineer Jim Shull, he discussed some of the early ideas for Mickey’s Toontown at Disneyland Park, including a ride inspired by “The Little Mermaid” or “Winnie the Pooh” that eventually became Roger Rabbit’s Car Toon Spin.
“The Little Mermaid” was released in 1989, so the Disney movie was a natural candidate under consideration for a new attraction in Mickey’s Toontown while it was initially being developed in the early ’90s. The Little Mermaid ~ Ariel’s Undersea Adventure would eventually open at Disney California Adventure in 2011.
Imagineers changed course to a Winnie the Pooh ride for Mickey’s Toontown and got a decent way through its development. The ride would have had guests in spinning “hunny” pots.
Then CEO Michael Eisner came in and asked Imagineers to switch gears and make an attraction inspired by the 1988 film “Who Framed Roger Rabbit?” Because the Winnie the Pooh idea was so far along in development, some elements were reworked for the Roger Rabbit ride. The spinning honey pots became spinning taxi cabs.
Non-spinning honey pots would later be used as the ride vehicles of The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh in Magic Kingdom, which replaced Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride in 1999. The Disneyland version that opened in 2003 uses beehive vehicles instead.
Roger Rabbit’s Cartoon Spin was updated in December and the entirety of Mickey’s Toontown has reopened this week after an extensive reimagining. Check out our full tour of the reimagined Toontown, featuring updates to nearly every aspect of the land.