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The Animal Kingdom Retheme Fans Really Want at Walt Disney World

The Animal Kingdom Retheme Fans Really Want at Walt Disney World
Credit: Disney/ Marvel

There’s a beautifully designed Park at Walt Disney World. Complete with intricate details prioritizing the essence of cultures across the globe, Disney’s stunning Animal Kingdom opened in 1998. Initially built to include mythical creatures, construction budgets curbed that idea and provided us with DinoLand U.S.A instead. This curious inclusion into the theming of the Park sort of made sense, but as years have passed, time has not been kind. More recently, we’ve begun to see closures and demolition of DinoLand attractions like Primeval Whirl. Due to this, Park visitors have lent their voices to the rumor mill that has suggested a retheme for this area of the Park.

Rumored Rethemes for Disney’s Animal Kingdom

Zootopia Shanghai Disney

Credit: Disney

It has been suggested that Moana and Coco may take their respective positions in Joe Rohde’s masterpiece. Reactions to these potential retheme at Animal Kingdom were not kind. They were downright nasty in some cases. EPCOT currently houses a pavilion dedicated to cultural representation in Coco. They are also building a new Moana attraction. The idea of putting the two properties in Animal Kingdom did not sit well with fans. This is understandable as neither really includes the unique and comprehensive detailing of Africa, Asia, and Pandora. They just don’t mesh well with that Park.

The retheme that could actually happen, though, also didn’t receive the warmest welcome from fans. At the D23 Expo 2022, Disney announced that they could potentially consider an expansion based on Zootopia. Although this sounds somewhat interesting, fans clamored to the internet to voice their displeasure and let Disney know they were not interested in the idea. Although the concept art looked interesting, there just doesn’t seem to be enough interest in Zootopia to justify taking this direction at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. If they’re going to do a retheme of DinoLand U.S.A, it’s going to have to be extensive and well received.

The Retheme at Disney’s Animal Kingdom We Deserve

Credit: Marvel

Let’s go ahead and rip off the bandaid here. We know that this could never happen at Walt Disney World due to character distribution ridiculousness. Before we even start pitching our idea for a retheme at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, let us be clear, this would be desirable but not probable, if at all possible. It’s strictly wishful thinking based on a top-rated intellectual property that would check every box Disney is most likely looking for in retheming DinoLand U.S.A.

In saying that, we would love to see Wakanda come to Disney’s Animal Kingdom in the form of a retheme. As Wakanda is fictional (just like Pandora) but based deep in African culture, it’s unique enough to give Disney a lot of freedom in mapping out the land and what it could provide in terms of entertainment. It’s perfect. There’s advanced technology (rides and shows), animals (unique and vast), diverse groups of individuals, and distinct opportunity to market toward fan bases of Black Panther.

chadwick boseman black panther wakanda army marvel studios

Credit: Marvel Studios

Think about it for a second before you write off the idea entirely. Disney focuses heavily on complex ride technology, so Wakanda fits that bill. If Galaxy’s Edge has taught us anything, Disney can create a specific story that furthers the legend of Black Panther within the land. Marvel has a devout following of fans who would be more than willing to immerse themselves in the iconic landscape. Wakanda walks a fine line between preserving nature and societal advancement; there is a teaching opportunity for Guests to understand that delicate balance that could reflect real-life situations in today’s world. 

Last but certainly not least, we need a place at Walt Disney World that immortalizes and pays respects to Chadwick Boseman (T’Challa). Boseman passed away in August 2020 after appearing as Black Panther, Wakanda’s warrior king in several Marvel films. He would eventually join the Avengers in their fight against Thanos and became a character that children and adults alike fell in love with. A land centered around the legend of the Black Panther would do well at Walt Disney World. There would be plenty of fan support, and as with the rest of the Park, we’d expect the retheme to be immaculately detailed. It just fits. So, until it happens, ‘Wakanda Forever.’

 

About Michael Arnold

Michael is a father, husband, and an Army Veteran. Michael spends his weekends at Walt Disney World and Universal Orlando checking out new merchandise and food. Michael is a graduate of the University of Alabama and has an education background in Public Health. You can find Michael riding Pirates of the Caribbean over and over again or binge watching new Marvel and Star Wars content. Han shot first. Thor is the strongest Avenger. Roll Tide and Wash Your Hands!