EPCOT Introduces Disney’s First-Ever Projection Mapped Topiary

Shannen Ace

Projection mapped Dante topiary

EPCOT Introduces Disney’s First-Ever Projection Mapped Topiary

Disney has introduced their first-ever projection mapped topiary during the 2024 EPCOT International Flower & Garden Festival.

Projection Mapped Topiary

Dante topiary

A new topiary inspired by Dante from “Coco” in his alebrije form was installed alongside a Miguel topiary at the beginning of the festival. Starting Wednesday, the Dante topiary transforms at night thanks to projection mapping.

Josh Harrison, Senior Illusion Integrator with Walt Disney Imagineering, and Brittany Smith, Production Designer for Senior Specialty Design with Walt Disney Imagineering, came up with the idea to create the projection mapped topiary.

Projection mapped Dante topiary

“With the bright and vibrant colors we see from this realm in ‘Coco,’ it seemed like an obvious choice when Josh and Brittany proposed the idea of using projection mapping technology to enhance Dante’s look during the evening hours,” said Steven Montalvo, Industrial Designer with Disney Live Entertainment.

Smith said, “Once we decided to create Dante, I immediately began testing glowing materials, like solar-charged paint, and various effects to portray his ethereal glow. During the day, Dante looks like the rest of the topiary family. As the sun begins to set, guests should start to see hints of the solar-charged paint beginning to glow. At night, Dante’s glow will shine even brighter through the use of projection-mapping technology. Pushing contrast between day and night allows us to incorporate more lifelike elements into these characters, providing guests with an unexpected element of surprise in the evening.”

The 2024 EPCOT International Flower & Garden Festival also has new “Wish” topiaries and a new musical Groot topiary.

“The collaboration between the teams has made it possible to push the envelope of creativity that allows us to produce these new innovative topiaries and help give that little added magical touch that we are known for,” Harrison said.

Check out the full list of character topiaries at the 2024 EPCOT International Flower & Garden Festival.

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