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Disney Offers at Peek at What's Next for Disney World, Disneyland

TheStreet logo TheStreet 7/29/2022 Daniel Kline

The theme park giant has been making major additions to its park and more is yet to come as its battle with Universal Studios heats up.

Walt Disney (DIS) - Get The Walt Disney Company Report and Comcast's (CMCSA) - Get Comcast Corporation Class A Common Stock Report Universal sometimes seem like heavyweight fighters throwing big punches that rock each other but never delivering a knockout. The two theme park giants compete directly in both California and Florida and they seem to push each other to spend more money.

That started with Universal's first "Wizarding World of Harry Potter" opening at its Orlando Islands of Adventure theme park. With its flagship "Forbidden Journey" ride as the centerpiece, this new section set a high bar for theme park lands.

Wizarding World wasn't just a collection of rides and shops. It was an immersive world that transported visitors into the Harry Potter books and films. Universal changed the game because of it, ultimately leading to Disney follow suit with "Pandora: The World of Avatar" at Disney's Animal Kingdom, "Toy Story Land" at Disney's Hollywood Studios, and, the true answer to Harry Potter, "Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge" at both Hollywood Studios in Florida and Disneyland in California.

And while both companies have spent the past few years focusing on building new rides, not new lands, the arms race continues. Universal has bet big on roller coasters, adding "Hagrid's Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure" and the Jurassic Park-themed Velocicoaster in Florida while it slowly builds its new "Epic Adventures" theme park.

Disney has opened one roller coaster, "Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind," Epcot's first, while it's close to opening "Tron: Lightcycle Run" at Magic Kingdom." The theme park giant also has a few other projects in the works, but while Universal's plans are clear -- it's building a whole new theme park in Florida which will likely include its Nintendo-themed rides that have debuted in Japan -- Disney has been quiet.

Now, with its D23 fan expo set for the Anaheim Convention Center on Sept. 9-11, the company has promised a peek into its theme park future.

Image source: Walt Disney © Provided by TheStreet Image source: Walt Disney

Disney's Wonderful World of Dreams  

Think of D23 as sort of Disney's own personal Comic-Con. The company holds large panels where it gives its biggest fans a peek into its future with top executives and creative leaders presenting.

Two key offerings will give attendees a look at what's coming next for Disney, not just at its theme parks.

"From the moment D23 Expo 2022 begins, attendees will be able to explore the Disney Parks Wonderful World of Dreams pavilion and step right into the new stories, attractions and adventures Disney Imagineers are bringing to life around the globe. There will be behind-the-scenes glimpses of Tiana’s Bayou Adventure, the transformation of Epcot, new Frozen-themed experiences, Disney Cruise Line, live entertainment and more to explore at the pavilion," the company shared in a press release. 

In addition to the Wonderful World of Dreams pavilion, one of the company's key leaders will be speaking on what's next for its theme parks and beyond.

"The latest on highly anticipated projects in development around the world will be shared when Disney Parks, Experiences and Products Chairman Josh D’Amaro presents 'A Boundless Future: Disney Parks, Experiences and Products,'" the company shared. "Josh takes the Hall D23 stage Sunday, Sept. 11, at 10:30 a.m. for this presentation filled with see-it-here-first moments and special surprises."

Disney Also Has Special D23 Merchandise    

With its biggest fans in attendance, Disney has a captive audience to sell a lot of merchandise to. It won't miss that opportunity as it will have a lot of special items for the event.

"This year’s D23 Expo 2022 will also feature never-before-seen, limited-edition merchandise from across Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, National Geographic and more" the company added. "The Walt Disney Imagineering Mickey’s of Glendale shop is returning to D23 Expo this year, this time with three unique retail spaces tailored to different categories and experiences: Mickey’s of Glendale Main Store, Mickey’s of Glendale Pin Store and D23 Expo Shop x Mickey’s of Glendale."

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