New Gnus & Changes From the Jungle at Disney!
Growing up, the best part of the newspaper was the comics or the “funnies” section. In today’s podcast, we’ll look at Disney’s recent headlines on The Jungle Cruise. Changes they have announced place Alberta Falls, granddaughter of Dr. Albert Falls as the story focal point in new changes coming to this legendary attraction. We look at the origin story for Dr. Albert Falls and the waterfall’s original name. We discuss how this contrasts with the film Jungle Cruise apparently docking this year on July 29th to a movie theater near you, and we talk about other rumors happening in Adventureland, namely The Enchanted Tiki Room. The challenge to all of this however, is that very little of it is funny…or even the least bit punny, as we all know the Jungle Cruise to be.
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And speaking of podcasts, before we get started, may I recommend a really fun podcast I had the privilege of doing with Tage and Teresa at Disneyland Weekly. In this same podcast where they interview me they talk about the announced re-opening date for Disneyland on April 29th. Please check them out!
Stories from the Falls
Everything we share today is based on this magical moment shared on the World-Famous Jungle Cruise:
“Now, we’re approaching beautiful Schweitzer Falls, named after the famous African explorer, Dr. Albert…Falls.”
Here is the announcement made this week by Disney:
As we shared earlier this year, we are building on the original story of the Jungle Cruise at Disneyland Park and Magic Kingdom Park. We’re adding more humor, wildlife and skipper heart to the classic attraction, and as part of a much larger effort, this updated experience will welcome new characters from around the world.
The enhancements include several new scenes guests will experience along the river, all interconnected. Our world-famous skippers will continue to share the unique adventure and interactions guests expect on the Jungle Cruise.
The new scenes will heighten our skippers’ legendary comedic tone, beginning with a trapped safari party that finds itself up a tree after their journey goes awry. Unexpected scenarios along the way will give the jungle and animals the last laugh!
For those looking to dive deeper, we’re also expanding the attraction’s backstory, centered around Alberta Falls, granddaughter of world-renowned Dr. Albert Falls, as the proprietor of the Jungle Navigation Company Ltd.
Jungle Cruise fans might be familiar with her name; however, wouldn’t you know it, we recently uncovered a copy of an interview with Alberta Falls that was featured in a 1938 issue of The Daily Gnus about her and the World-Famous Jungle Cruise. We hope you’ll enjoy getting to know her!
Here is the copy of that issue:
Note that Dr. Albert Falls was a “fallout” from the original name of the falls, which was “Schweitzer Falls” named after Dr. Albert Falls. The original Jungle Cruise album shared a line that stated:
“We’re approaching beautiful Schweitzer Falls named after the famous doctor – Albert Schweitzer, who’s done so much for the people of Africa.”
DisneyHistory101 offers an overview of Albert Schweitzer and his role in the Jungle Cruise. Even medicine bottles in the queue at Disneyland showcases medications he provided the people in Africa as a doctor.
Jungle Cruise the Movie, I Presume?
At Disneyland, the Bengal Barbecue was once named, Sunkist I Presume, named after an event that once took place when Henry Morgan Stanley once found David Livingstone deep in the jungle and said, “Dr. Livingstone, I presume?”
Equally and seemingly lost in the jungle is the Jungle Cruise, the movie. Note that the film, Jungle Cruise, was delayed because of the pandemic. The film seems to have no connection with the planned changes Imagineering is currently making. The story line for that Dr. Lily Houghton (Emily Blunt) enlists the aid of wisecracking skipper Frank Wolff (Dwayne Johnson) to take her down the Amazon in his ramshackle boat. Together, they compete against a German expedition in search for an ancient tree, known as the Tree of Life that holds the power to heal — a discovery that will change the future of medicine. Along the way they encounter dangerous animals that threaten their safety.
Other Changes in the Jungle
We spoke of other changes happening to the Jungle Cruise recently, and you’ll want to hear our thought and insights on that podcast as well. Visit us here to learn and know more.
Not only are there changes happening in the Jungle Cruise, but rumored changes happening to the Enchanted Tiki Room in the form of a Moana meet ‘n’ greet. Check out this fairly recent podcast, which not only talks about previous changes that have happened and how we respond to change in the real world.
The Wayfinder Society: A Patreon Site for Disney Fans
We are offering a new program where you have the opportunity to enjoy exclusive offerings from Disney at Play and Disney at Work. Join us as we introduce our new Patreon program, the Wayfinder Society, intended to give you new insights to all things Disney, whether its work or play. I am truly excited to share this new opportunity with you and look forward to creating new experiences that you will enjoy whether at home or at the Disney parks.
And when you donate, a portion of your contribution goes to Embrace Celebration, dedicated to helping Disney Cast Members and others in this area who are unemployed during this pandemic. To learn more, visit our site to discover our offerings and various tiers. Join us!