Atlantis is Waiting

When Christopher Robin backed up that giant dump truck, cackled maniacally, and pulled the lever, he buried Atlantis forever beneath several metric tons of pliable playground flooring.  Now youngsters crawl through Winnie the Pooh’s house and clamor over Piglet’s Crypt-o-Wheel of Doom, never realizing that just 20,000 leagues below the surface, guests once explored the towering columns of the Lost Continent in a journey through liquid space.

As if millions of voices cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced.

Those days are long forgotten, and not a trace of Atlantis remains.  At least at the Magic Kingdom.  But over at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, Atlantis is not quite ready to slip into the icy depths.

You won’t recognize it, even if you can find it.  There’s nothing even vaguely Atlantian about it.  Some scattered rocks, and just the barest hint of a curvy line on the floor that is supposed to evoke the flowing sea.  Look closely and you can see some show lighting suspended above.  This is the ill-fated character greeting spot for the ill-fated Disney animated movie, that was supposed to be really cool but ended up being very ridiculous.  It used to have props, such as neato Atlantis wave runners (I’m not joking), and there were foam-head and “face” characters as well.  Quite the PhotoPass spot, huh?

But where exactly is it?  Tucked away just off the queue from the Magic of Disney Animation, of course.  The exterior queue has several switchbacks through a series of stucco walls, past illuminated animation concept art.  It’s actually quite nice, but unfortunately, the Animation attraction is never popular enough to warrant opening this space.  So the Atlantis character greeting area, which is found at the rear of the queue, is rarely seen by guests.

Actually, there is a much more interesting parkeological aspect to this area, that has nothing to do with Atlantis, but I will save that for another time.

“I’ll be Jack, and you be Rose, and I’ll draw you wearing this.”

Shane was raised on a steady diet of EPCOT Center and Kenner action figures. Parkeology is the happy result. He is the creator along with his friend Ted of the WDW47 Challenge and the WDW49 Challenge — featured by such media giants as CNN, ABC, FoxNews, and the in-flight magazine for Norwegian Air. With his brother Tristan, Shane is the author of the adventure fantasy novels Arabian Heist and Johnny Shipwreck. He currently resides in the Swiss Family Treehouse.

14 thoughts on “Atlantis is Waiting

    • Nope, haven’t yet revisited this topic. It’s a good one though. Maybe I need to get off my butt and do some more parkeology!

  1. Agreed, Lauren, especially since they never need to use that animation queueing anymore. There’s usually chains up preventing you from exploring back there.

  2. that spot is actually used as an “Animal resting zone” now. It’s pretty difficult to get to if you don’t know where you’re going, as it heads right into backstage.

  3. This is especially embarrassing to me… a guy who used to work on 20K… but then again Shane never consults with me on anything, I blame him 100%.

    But on the plus side I do think there was a black hole somewhere around the “Lin Cod” scene in 20K if that helps at all.

  4. @Shawn… Ha! You are absolutely correct. Remember that line in Star Wars when Han Solo says that the Millenium Falcon made the Kessel run in less than 12 parsecs, which makes it sound like a time-based achievement, when parsecs are actually distance? And then Lucasfilm hastily made up an excuse about the Kessel run actually having a bunch of black holes near it, and how Solo actually meant that he flew super close to the black holes and such… Dang, I wish I could think of something that clever to cover up my mistake.

  5. Tsk tsk, I’ve come to expect nothing but the utmost quality of facts from your blog, and here I see another instance of “20,000 leagues” being used to measure vertical distance beneath the waves. The “20,000” is used to describe the length of the journey taken by Nemo and the crew, not depth.

    (I post because I care. This is one of the best Disney blogs out there, and certainly the funniest. Keep on writing!)

  6. Happened upon your blog today because someone referenced it on the DIS boards, and I just wanted to let you know you do a fantastic job. You achieve the perfect balance of affection and irreverence when it comes to that little slice of heaven in central Florida, one I can definitely relate to. When I saw the Alec Guinness shot with that “a million voices cried out in terror” quote underneath it in reference to the Atlantis portion of the dearly departed 20,000 Leagues, I nearly snarfed on my iMac. Nicely done! I’ll be checking in from now on.

  7. Hmmm… Did Lilo and Stitch also hang out here? ‘Tis possible. I know the surfboard and such are in a semi-permanent spot in Animal Kingdom now. It would not surprise me if they appeared here, but it’s clear why they haven’t used this spot in awhile. It’s extremely well hidden.

  8. I could be very much mistaken, but did this watermark not also double for Lilo & Stitch for some time. Perhaps accompanied by a surfboard and beach postcard backdrop?

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