John Lasseter lends his voice as Jungle Cruise Skipper for Disney Publishing #SDCC

Have you ever wanted to experience some of your favorite Disney attractions from the comfort of your own home? Disney Publishing has made this possible with their collection of novels and picture books based on the classic rides! Disney Publishing Editors Nachie Marsham, Michael Siglain, and Eric Gero gave audience members a sneak-peek at what’s in store for these fan-favorite stories at their panel, Off the Rails: When Disney Park Attractions Come to Life…in Books!

 ‘Disney Parks Presents’ are a fantastic series of picture books that feature a specific Disneyland attraction. Each beautifully illustrated page follows the scenes from the ride, as well as lyrics from the ride’s theme song. Included with each book is a CD containing the song, so you can listen as you read along. While they are very simple in concept and ideal for 3-5 year olds, each book has it’s own hidden Mickey’s and nostalgia that any generation will appreciate. As of now, they have three books produced: It’s A Small World, Haunted Mansion, and Pirates of the Caribbean.

Just as Imagineers will be making changes to the actual Pirates of the Caribbean attraction, editors were able to make small changes in the books to make them PC for a younger audience. For instance, ‘The Red Head’ woman is not tied up in the book, and pirates now include women and different ethnicities to promote diversity. Another thing you won’t see in the picture books are guns. Just as Disney Merchandising removed all guns from their stores, the books wanted to remove violent imagery and replaced them with slingshots.

So what Disney attraction can we expect next? The Jungle Cruise! Since the ride does not have it’s own theme song, Disney’s John Lasseter providing the audio for the CD by reciting the classically awful puns that we all love to hate. Fun fact- before John became the famous Disney Executive he is today, he was a Skipper on this very ride! The audio will also include live recorded sounds/audio from the ride. Publishing Editor Eric Gero was able to go to Disneyland before the park opened to assist with the audio collecting! “The access the artists are granted is unprescented…” Gero explained as he expressed his admiration for the Imagineers.

 If picture books aren’t your thing, Disney Publishing has got you covered with their novels based on the attractions. Tales From Adventureland are a series original stories and characters that take place in, you guessed it, Adventureland! The books are written for 9-12 year old readers, but have Disneyana easter-eggs throughout the book that only older audiences will catch (an omage to our favorite bar, Trader Sams!) The books, The Keymaster’s Quest & The Golden Paw, are in the final stages of development and available for pre-order now.

Not in the mood to wait and want to read some now? Tales from the Haunted Mansion, Volume 1: The Fearsom Foursom is ready for your enjoyment. Editor Michael Siglain is an editor for this series and explained that he has always loved “things that go bump in the night.” His passion stems from the fact that he gets to bring his Disney fandom to his day to day work life. Michael went to Walt Disney World and rode the Haunted Mansion at 4:30am for research and confirmed it was entirely creepy! The novels themselves are meant to be a bit creepy, and ‘if it’s a little scary, that’s not a bad thing” Michael explained. Volume 2: Midnight at Madame Leota’s comes out next week, and Volume 3: Grim Grinning Ghosts will be out next summer!

More to See!

We are at San Diego Comic-Con 2017 the entire weekend with plenty to see! Check it all out by clicking below!

Author: Becca Tiemeier

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