On his official Twitter account, Disney CEO Bob Iger posed with Shanghai Disneyland Cast Members and Disney Parks Chairman Josh D’Amaro for the resort’s 7th anniversary.
7th Anniversary of Shanghai Disney Resort
Had a great visit to Shanghai Disneyland 7 years after opening. Great to see cast members and guests!
Iger has been involved with the Shanghai destination’s creation since location scouting began in 1999, and especially so when he became Chief Executive Officer of The Walt Disney Company in 2005. At the Grand Opening Gala in 2016, Iger spoke of his personal connection to the park, and mentioned it had surpassed even his own highest aspirations.
17 years ago, I stood on this site for the very first time, looking out over the horizon and imagining the future. I allowed myself to dream big, envisioning a destination that would re-define the limits of our creativity and innovation — and what we have accomplished here far exceeds even my wildest dreams. I know everyone involved feels the same way. We can’t wait to share it with the people of China, and welcome the whole world to this very special place.
At a final cost of $5.5 billion, Shanghai Disneyland is massive, comprising seven lands with an eighth on the way, and some of the most technologically-advanced experiences ever created for a theme park.
Shanghai Disneyland Making a Comeback
According to the South China Morning Post, the Chinese theme park industry is booming once again after lingering COVID-19 pandemic complications, thanks in part to the recent May Day holidays.
During the five-day May Day holiday last week, long queues and crowds were seen at the country’s theme parks, a sign they have become ‘early beneficiaries’ of a tourism recovery after Beijing abandoned its tough pandemic restrictions. Tickets for both Shanghai Disneyland and Universal Studios Beijing almost sold out ahead of the holiday. Some 92,000 visitors arrived at Atlantis Sanya, a water park in southern Hainan Province during the so-called golden week, more than four times the number in the same period last year, according to data from Chinese conglomerate Fosun International.
Some local parks in China saw attendance increase as much as 105% during this period, as experts correlate these dramatic changes to a pent-up demand from the public for outgoing activities, after long-term COVID restrictions. In the most recently available global rankings of theme park attendance, Shanghai Disneyland rests neatly between Disneyland Park in California and EPCOT in Florida. It could be even higher now, considering these statistics are from the pandemic era.
This reopening and gradual return to form is occurring as construction is nearly complete on a new land based around the 2016 film “Zootopia” — anticipated to open later this year.
In the primary attraction for this new area, guests will join the Zootopia Police Department and fight crime alongside Judy and Nick, under a vast and colossal city backdrop.
“Zootopia” is an extremely popular franchise in China, where $220 million of its $1 billion box office gross was made, meaning it is still in the top 50 highest-earning films throughout Chinese cinema history as of 2023.
Join us in wishing a happy seventh birthday to Shanghai Disney Resort, and let us know what your favorite upcoming development there is in the comments below.