Fun Facts and Stories of Tokyo Disneyland

audio link

You can also find other information on fun facts and secrets and fun facts of Disneyland by consulting with your library, your local independent bookstore or visit our online bookstore.

These are real Disney secrets. For more Disney secrets and trivia and bloopers try DISNEY Ever Notice... ?. If you are interested in secrets of Walt Disney World, click here. If you are interested in Fun Facts about Disneyland click here. If you are interested in rumors and bizarre facts, checkout Disney Urban Legend Reference Page and Urban Legends Archive.


Secrets

General

  1. Behind TDL stands an office complex named "Oriental-land. Staff interviews, training and business concerning TDL all takes place there. I taught English to the Japanese staff for 2 years in 1987 and 1988. The park had not been open long and was still working out a few problems with Disney's corporate headquarters in the USA. Back then, almost all of the staff were Japanese. A handful of foreigners had been hired, mostly inside Japan, to work as extra's/performers. There is an interesting photo on a wall in this office that shows the park upon initial completion, surrounded by barren land all around. (Later to become hotel row) TDL attempted to be independent from the American office during these years, and the park almost closed down in 1987 due to financial problems and a lack of visitors. There was little variety in the food, and the park was catering to muh to the Japanese public like other amusement parks in Japan, causing it to lose a lot of its luster. It was in 1989 that TDL finally gave in to America's corporate orders and came on board as an official Disneyland. The park was quite quickly transformed into the place it is now. If they had not made the decision to take orders from the corporate office, the park would have been doomed to closure. I am glad it did not close. It turned out to be a very magic kingdom.
    REPORTED: Dan Venz 16 DEC 01
  2. There is reportly a Club 33, like the one in Disneyland, at Toyko Disneyland at number 33 in the World Bazaar.
    REPORTED: Kent J. Markham 17 DEC 98
    Concerning Club 33 at TDL: There is one there just like in Anaheim. I took a picture of the doorway entrance from Center Street off of Main Street in World Bazaar. My Tokyo Disney Resort Page is available at http://www.jtcent.com . Also, my boss here in Japan has visited the Club many times with Club members.
    CONFIRMED: JoeInJpn 18 JUL 00
  3. When Tokyo Disneyland first opened in 1983, the face Cast Members of the Zoo Crew were Japanese rather than American imports as they are now. I have a poster celebrating TDL's first Christmas picturing a Japanese "Alice."
    REPORTED: Jim O'Connor 25 APR 97
  4. TDL still uses the "A" through "E" ticket system that was abandoned by the American based parks 15 years ago.
    REPORTED: anon 26 SEP 96
    Tokyo Disneyland is the only park that still has an "E" ticket.
    CONFIRMED: TR Shaw 30 JUN 96
    Tokyo Disney still uses the A-E ticket attractions as well as a one price general admission ticket (World Pass) which gives you unlimited use of all park attractions and rides (Just like the WDW and Disneyland normal admission passes).
    CONFIRMED: Jason Wilson 03 JAN 97
    I used only the passport, but A through E class tickets were on sale both times, and cast members running the attractions were checking for passports and collecting tickets. Extra A-E tickets were on sale inside the park.
    CONFIRMED: Alan Cranford 23 MAR 99
    Tokyo Disneyland no longer uses the A-E ticket system.
    UPDATE: Jonathan 12 FEB 06
  5. Although 99.9% of the Cast Members at Tokyo Disneyland are Japanese, there are a small number of 'imports' working there, namely as Disney characters, such as Cinderella and the Prince, The Little Mermaid, Alice in Wonderland, etc.
    REPORTED: Ron LaPedis 04 JAN 97
    Tokyo Disneyland uses "imports" for certain characters at the Park. I lived in Tokyo in 1992 and a good friend of mine was Prince Charming in the Parade at Tokyo Disneyland. My friend was from Denmark.
    CONFIRMED: Tom Miller 03 MAR 97
    It was mentioned that a few foreigners were used for face characters. The Diamond Horseshoe Review uses American and Japanese performers (50/50). My wife and I were part of the first performers in 1983 (Grand Opening). I was "Diamond Jim" and she was a Horseshoe dancer. We did three tours of duty. I can tell you from personal experience, that we had a wonderful time. We took the time to get to know our fellow performers, tech crew and supervisors. We had the opportunity to travel the country and make lifelong friends. We'd go back in a heart beat.
    CONFIRMED: Michael Whtiney 21 JAN 98
    "The entire silhouette studio cast is American, as are many of the "face characters."
    CONFIRMED: Alan Cranford 23 MAR 99
    I was an American "imported" face character at Toyko Disneyland. I did both Peter Pan and Pete from Pete's Dragon in the Electrical Parade. The lights on those floats are the same lights you use on a Christmas tree. During one of the performances, I got my foot caught in the lights of Captain Hook's ship and had to hop along side it until I got unstuck. Peter pan is supposed to have a bit more grace than that, but it happens...
    CONFIRMED: Todd 14 JUL 00
  6. I was also a face character for the 1998 summer cast. It was the most exciting experience of my life. It was harder to adapt to coming back to the states than it was to adapt to moving there. We never locked our doors while we were there. If you ever get a chance to visit, be kind....its hard being away from home!
    REPORTED: Samirella 05 AUG 99
  7. Tokyo Disneyland Cast Members are not allowed to enter the parks with their IDs. Neither do they honor Walt Disney World, Disneyland Paris, or Disneyland IDs there. The Parks also do not honor Disney Store ID's unless accompanied by a main gate pass.
    REPORTED: W. Todd Stephenson 11 JAN 96
    Cast Members are not allowed entrance to the park at anytime except to go to or from their place of work, while in costume, and even then may not under any circumstances walk through an area for which they are not properly attired (a Westernland Cast Member may not cut through Fantasyland, for instance). Other true rules include: Cast Members may not chew gum, wear sunglasses or put their hands in their pockets, no matter how cold they may be. They may not attend any performance of any show, even one in which they are a performer, without written permission from the director of entertainment, obtained three days in advance.
    CONFIRMED: anon 26 SEP 96
  8. The Disneysea's Indiana Jones attraction's conveyance will be Enhanced Motion Vehicles (EMV) similar to those used in Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Forbidden Eye and Countdown to Extinction.
    REPORTED: Patrick Fitzsimmons 01 JAN 97
  9. Robin Williams had an old routine about how Mickey Mouse appeared to very little children: "A six-foot rat!" When we took our two-year-old daughter to Tokyo Disneyland, here comes Mickey, all bouncy and happy. Danielle gave the Robin Willaims response and wouldn't stop screaming in fear for 15 minutes. I never felt so sorry for Mickey Mouse in my life. :-) The actors portraying Cinderalla, Prince Charming, et al, at Tokyo Disneyland are all imported from America for authenticity, I guess. I had wondered how these teenagers/young adults were adapting to life in Japan, a place where most of them don't know the language or culture. I got my answer when two of them sat down with us and started pouring their hearts out. My fellow Americans, if you find yourself at Tokyo Disneyland, take a minute to talk to these kids. They could use a smile.
    REPORTED: Bob Moore 03 FEB 97
  10. Don't pass up a guided tour with an English-speaking guide! I have been fortunate enough to tour all four Disney theme park locations.
    REPORTED: Alan Cranford 23 MAR 99
  11. CLUB 33: I saw a door marked "33" in the World Bazaar, and witnessed men in business attire entering and leaving. Some sort of doorman controlled access. The door was of frosted glass and may be identical to Club 33 in Anaheim.
    REPORTED: Alan Cranford 23 MAR 99
  12. More Fun Facts

Main Street

  1. Because of the weather in Japan, Main Street is covered by a glass canopy. The entire area can be cooled in summer and heated in winter.
    REPORTED: Ron LaPedis 04 JAN 97
    CONFIRMED: Bob Moore 03 FEB 97

Westernland

  1. At one time, there were 2 riverboats plying the Rivers of America. The "Richard F. Iverine" and the 'Admiral Joe Fowler". The Richard F. Iverine is now the Liberty Belle Riverboat. The Admiral Joe Fowler was a larger, higher capacity riverboat that was based on the Mark Twain at Disneyland. During a storm sometime in the late 70's, the Admiral was damaged. But later, it managed to come back at Tokyo Disneyland, as there 'Mark Twain'. It is still in operation today.
    REPORTED: Carey Holtsclaw 15 JUN 02

Fantasyland

  1. The Haunted Mansion is the only attraction that is at all 4 Magic Kingdoms, but is in a different land in each park (Disneyland-New Orlean's Square, WDW-Liberty Square, Tokyo-Fantasyland, Paris-Frontierland). Does anyone know where it will be located at in Hong Kong?
    REPORTED: Jim 14 NOV 01
    The Haunted Mansions (and Phantom Manor of course) are indeed each in different lands. As for Hong Kong Disneyland, the rumor I have heard is that it will be a duplicate of the Phantom Manor at Disneyland Paris. I hope this is true, because P.M. is better in my opinion, than the WDW version (and Tokyo I would assume). I havent ridden the Disneyland version.
    CONFIRMED: Chris Oatman 11 FEB 02
  2. When Snow White and the Seven Dwarf sculptures were made for Disneyland Paris, the same size mistake was made as at Disneyland, so Disneyland Paris had to arrange them in "forced perspective" like Disneyland Anaheim. When they were made for Disneyland Tokyo, the error was corrected. Tokyo sent them back - they wanted theirs to be exactly like Disneyland's!
    REPORTED: Roger Worden 18 MAR 99

Snow White's Adventures

  1. At Snow White's Adventures, just before the ride vehicles enter the attraction, look up and you might see the Evil Queen peeping out the window. Also, in the attraction, the Wicked Witch holds an apple that has missed 3 spots of the potion suggesting a Hidden Mickey's Head.
    REPORTED: Jason Tan 21 DEC 98

Roger Rabbit's Car Toon Spin

  1. I saw a wall with several license plates on it inside the Roger Rabbit's Car-Toon Spin building. Also, on a pamphlette is a little quiz game where virtually all the license plates on that wall are listed and you have to figure out what they mean. The guidebook even contains the answers!
    REPORTED: Eric Lin 20 JAN 97

Pirates of the Caribbean

Backyard Imagineering
Backyard
Imagineering
Fireflies
  1. The fireflies in Pirates are actually small blinking lights on a small string or wire, blown in different directions by small fans.
    REPORTED: Scott Mackay 14 MAR 96
    CONFIRMED: Eric B 22 AUG 96
    To be more specific, the fireflies that are throughout the load area on Pirates of the Caribbean, are small lights on thin black wires but they don't blink. They look like they do because the small light is glued to a black piece of cardboard which "flutters" from air blown from small fans below each fly. The blinking action is because the black cardboard blocks the small light from your view.
    CONFIRMED: David Smith 23 JAN 97
  2. How about the fog that drifts out from behind the boat in the "Battle" area. It is the Mee Fog effect. Water is shot through a small hole at 1000PSI, in fact the hole is smaller than a hair from your head. Because it forced out so fast, the water condenses, just like real fog does. Hence the Mee Fog, slogan, "Real Fog"
    REPORTED: jojobean 15 APR 97
    Backyard Imagineering
    Backyard
    Imagineering
    Fireflies
  3. The fire on Pirates is made by shining lights onto a special, moving cloth.
    REPORTED: DaWiZard 12 MAY 97
  4. How about the effect of the cannon ball hitting the water. It is done with a air cannon. You can see this effect at the "Inside the magic" studio tour at Disney/MGM. Just compressed air under the water.
    REPORTED: jojobean 15 APR 97


Tokyo Disney Seas

American Waterfront

  1. E. B. Effects created the boilers for the American Waterfront. Checkout a sample of their boiler and work.
    REPORTED: anon 14 MAY 01

Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Crystal Skull

  1. This beautiful skull and snake for Indiana Jones is over four feet tall!.
    REPORTED: anon 13 MAY 01
    The Crystal Skull for TDS was also done by E. B. Effects and is in fact 1700 pounds of clear urethane cast at one time.
    REPORTED: anon 06 JUN 02

Journey to the Center of the Earth

  1. The Journey to the Center of the Earth attraction's conveyances are Enhanced Motion Vehicles (EMV) similar to those used in Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Forbidden Eye and Countdown to Extinction.
    REPORTED: Patrick Fitzsimmons 01 JAN 97
  2. E. B. Effects created most of the signs in Journey to the Center of the Earth as well of the effects in the crystal cavern.


Stories

From: Amanda Wyatt 20 JUL 98

I was a American face character (Alice, Wendy, Ariel) from 1994-1995. It was the best experience of my life! I truly enjoyed living in such a wonderful country. All of the face characters (and other American performers) were treated so great by the Japanese. We also had the opportunity to make great friends during our stay. I still talk to some of my friends in Japan. Anyway, just thought I would contact you to tell you I loved reading your secrets. Here's another one for you.... In the winter time the face characters that greet the guests as they enter the park get so cold in their costumes, that they may put up to three layers of sweat pants, tights, leotards, etc.. underneath their costume just to keep warm enough to smile. Even though it's still a lot of fun!


Disney Toys | Disney Books | Disney Music | Disney Videos | Disney Software | Disney Magazines | Disneyana | More Shopping

Find

Mickey Line
Mickey Where to next?




Web page ©1995-2006 by T.R. Shaw. All rights Reserved, USA and Worldwide