The new Figment meet and greet debuted inside the Imagination! Pavilion at EPCOT on the morning of September 10. The highly-anticipated start date of the interaction opportunity was announced at Destination D23 2023.
Figment Meet and Greet Area
Initial lines formed before the Imagination! Pavilion even opened, with a large group assembling outside of The Seas with Nemo & Friends attraction shortly after the park’s opening.
Guests were permitted to enter the Imagination! Pavilion around 8:30 a.m. EST, where another queue formed.
It was then that we got our first at the Figment meet and greet in its permanent location; Walt Disney World shared a first look at the location on its social media accounts Friday, and the set debuted at World Showplace during the “An Evening at EPCOT with D23” Destination D23 event Friday night.
The set features a vivid backdrop featuring vibrant shades of blue, orange, purple, and yellow. It even features the Dream Mobile being piloted by Dreamfinder, a nod to the original Journey into Imagination attraction that occupied the Imagination! Pavilion from 1983–1998.
Another reference to the original ride is present in the form of an animation on the set’s right side. The video, which was present in the original Journey into Imagination, is a roughly 30-to-45-second loop and is surrounded by the words “Inspire,” “Explore,” “Create,” “Dream,” and “Imagine;” backlights cause the words to change colors frequently.
A tall paintbrush leans against the box surrounding the backdrop. Neon lights that look like a brush stroke adorn the facade and lead to the brush’s tip, which also changes colors.
Figment Meet and Greet
Figment wears his yellow sweatshirt with red striping on the neck and sleeves as seen on his animatronic in the Journey into Imagination with Figment attraction.
The character did not sign autographs during the interaction, but autograph cards were provided. Guests were also free to hug the beloved dragon.
The autograph card features the same background as the meet and greet itself (sans the Dream Mobile). The Imagination Institute logo is on the back.
Check out our video documenting the meet and greet here:
The Figment meet and greet was first announced in 2022 when Disney stated that an interaction featuring the purple dragon would be coming to EPCOT “in 2023,” with the timeframe being specified as “this summer” in March 2023. It occupies the former location of the Vanellope meet and greet, which stopped being offered in August.
Figment debuted alongside Dreamfinder in 1983 as part of Journey into Imagination, which opened a few months after EPCOT Center’s opening. The ride demonstrated the beauty, power, and wonder of imagination to guests and was well-received, allowing Figment and Dreamfinder to become pseudo-mascots of the park.
Given EPCOT Center’s original goal of being an education-oriented experience, traditional Disney characters generally recognizable to parkgoers were not initially used in meet and greets or as walk-around attractions. Original characters created for the park were instead used in this role, with Figment and Dreamfinder being two characters that guests could interact with.
Figment has evolved into a park icon over the past number of decades, developing a strong fanbase as he appears on merchandise, in inspired desserts, and even in video games. He may soon even shift to the big screen, as a Seth Rogen-produced Figment film is even in development.
Proof of the character’s popularity is perhaps most prevalent in an early 2022 frenzy in which EPCOT International Festival of the Arts popcorn buckets depicting Figment consistently sold out. While proper Figment meet and greets have been previously offered at EPCOT, his new meet and greet will be guests’ first chance to interact with the beloved imagination dragon in quite some time.
Will you be checking out the new Figment meet and greet at EPCOT? Let us know in the comments.