When the iconic Disney ride Splash Mountain closed earlier this year, it instantly became one of the biggest Disney news stories of the year. The ride, which was based on the extremely controversial film Song of the South, was closed due to concerns that the material was racially insensitive in today’s society. In its place, Disney is currently building Tiana’s Bayou Adventure, a new ride based on the animated film The Princess and the Frog. This attraction was deemed more politically appropriate for the Parks to offer to Guests in today’s society.
Now, in an extremely surprising move, Disney has announced a new offering that’s name implies a direct association with Song of the South. Following the announcement, discussions between fans have erupted all over social media.
Song of the South Lives on in New Disney Offering
Song of the South is a film that was produced by Walt Disney Studios in 1946. Despite its initial popularity, this movie has largely remained shrouded in controversy due to its portrayal of race relations in the American South. Set on a plantation in Georgia, the film combines animation and live-action elements to tell the story of Uncle Remus, a former slave who shares moral lessons with a young boy named Johnny.
One of the most memorable references from the film Song of the South is that of “The Laughing Place.” This phrase has become closely associated with both the film and the Splash Mountain attraction over the years. Now, Disney is introducing a new offering that will be named after this reference.
Disney Introduces ‘Laughing Place Ranch’
To the surprise of many fans, Disney has just announced their upcoming project titled the “Laughing Place Ranch.” This ranch will be located in Cotino, Disney’s new Storyliving community being built in California. As part of the community’s numerous offerings, Guests will be able to enjoy Longtable Park.
Within the Park, Guests can find Laughing Place Ranch. Disney explains;
“Designed to celebrate Walt’s love for horses, this equestrian-themed dog park will feature separate play areas where small and large pets can jump and gallop the day away!”
While the idea sounds great, some fans can’t help but feel that it is a little strange to select this name after all of the drama surrounding the removal of Splash Mountain earlier this year.
One commenter says;
“So heaven forbid you play the @TheAcademy award winning song Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah in the Esplanade or anywhere in the Parks, but naming a locale Laughing Place Ranch is okay? Can you just acknowledge @S0ngOfTheSouth is part of your legacy instead of selectively censoring it?”
“Trying to reference the Laughing Place song and mock Splash Mountain fans? How shameful….”
As of now, no follow-up about this name has been made, but fans will surely be grilling Disney for a response.