A Mary Poppins-themed attraction will be coming to Walt Disney World’s Epcot as part of a massive upgrade of the decades-old park, Yahoo Entertainment reports.
Every two years, the D23 Expo — that is, the convention of the Official Disney Fan Club — convenes, where exciting new announcements about planned and upcoming changes are made. The 2019 event wrapped up on Sunday, and one of the final announcements concerned a huge new addition to Epcot: the addition of a Mary Poppins attraction.
Specifically, the exterior of the attraction will be a recreation of Cherry Tree Lane, the mythical London street where the Banks family lived in the original 1964 classic, as well as in the 2018 sequel, Mary Poppins Returns. The street scene will evoke an Edwardian London neighborhood, complete with blooming cherry trees and flickering gas lamps. No. 17, the Banks family’s home, will serve as the entrance to a walk-through attraction.
None other than Dick Van Dyke himself, who portrayed chimney sweep Bert in the 1964 original as well as senior banker Mr. Dawes in the sequel, helped make the announcement.
The announcement of a Mary Poppins attraction follows the announcement of a Moana-themed attraction at Epcot, also made at D23. The new additions are a part of a larger effort to upgrade the decades-old park, which by some measures had gotten stale in recent years.
The 50th Anniversary of @WaltDisneyWorld Resort will be one of the biggest ever! With the addition of Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser, Epcot's multi-year transformation, the first-ever Mary Poppins-inspired attraction, and so much more! https://t.co/eGl6gnaWW0 #D23Expo pic.twitter.com/CWqsPA2wnR
— Disney Parks (@DisneyParks) August 26, 2019
As Polygon reports, Walt Disney World’s 50th anniversary is coming up, and in preparation, the company is in the early stages of a huge makeover of Epcot. Specifically, for the past 40 years, the theme park has been divided into two sections: Future World and World Showcase. However, new plans for the park will split up the park into four “neighborhoods”: World Showcase, World Celebration, World Nature, and World Discovery.
World Showcase will largely remain the same, albeit with the upcoming addition of a Ratatouille-themed ride at the France pavilion, the Mary Poppins section referenced above, and some touching up here and there.
But Future World, as a whole, will be no more.
Spaceship Earth, the iconic globe that is the focal point of Epcot, will be getting a new ride that focuses on storytelling, and will be the keystone attraction of the World Celebration section.
World Discovery will house the Guardians of the Galaxy-themed roller coaster currently under construction, and will host a space-themed restaurant. World Nature, which will be the scene of the Moana-themed attraction, will focus on nature.