Western To rivet Forwarding
Western To rivet Forwarding (WRE) is the name of an attraction of the Disney parks which was never built but many elements of the project persisted in the projects carried out then. The attraction conceived as from the year 1965 was to be the fast first river of logs of Disney. It was to have as a subject the Western and to be built in the north-western section of the Frontierland of the Magic Kingdom with Walt Disney World Resort in Florida, this space is currently occupied by Big Thunder Mountain, conceived by Tony Baxter.
The history of attraction begins in 1963 with the transfer from Marc Davis from the service animation from Walt Disney Pictures towards WED Entreprises. He works on a project of river attraction for a contract of installation obtained by Disney in the town of Saint-Louis named Riverfront Square . It took again the concept of Nature' S Wonderland but with more technology. Attraction was to present animals in a decoration of the west. But the project stopped for various reason.
Five years of concepts
In 1965, Davis takes again her concept named Western To rivet Wrinkle and packs it. The visitor can then see populated natural decorations of animals (bisons, bear, cows), cities of the west populated characters (Indian, dancers of fran-cancan, gangsters,…) often strewn with gags. Mary Blair also took part in the creation of the decorations. The city had was called Thunder Mesa . See the description below.
- the others imagineers compared attraction with a Western version of the Pirates of the Caribbean.
Marc Davis worked nearly 5 years on attraction by designing the scenes and the characters in the shape of drawings and models. Dirk Irvine and Roy Oliver Disney liked all the two concepts.
During the phase of development of Magic Kingdom, Western To rivet Forwarding (new name of attraction) was to be the answer of Walt Disney World to the Pirates of the Caribbean of Disneyland, attraction open in 1967 and which was not envisaged in Florida.
Change of program at the last minute
Shortly after the opening of Magic Kingdom in 1971, the majority of the visitors required where the " were; Pirates". The imagineers of Disney thought that the proximity of the Caribbean would make that the visitors would ignore a so close subject. The direction leant in the same direction and wanted centered the thematisation of the park on the American west.
Into 1973, the direction changed spindle of shoulder and, for reason of satisfaction of the visitors and economy (30 million $ instead of 60), decided to duplicate the pirates in Florida in 1972. Attraction opened in December 1973. Urgency of a " grosse" attraction comparable with the Pirates was not any more topicality. But the direction was also confronted with the projects of the second phase of the park with:
- the opening of Tom Sawyer Island (1973)
- the expansion of Tomorrowland with Space Mountain open in January 1974
- The Walt Disney Story
- a concept, of Tony Baxter, an insane train in a mountain of Far West, Big Thunder Railway
However the resemblance between the concept of Big Thunder Railway and Western To rivet it Forwarding seemed to be able to join. Tony Baxter had even provided that its train would skirt an immense building covered with rock having to contain the river of its elder, Marc Davis. However a concept published in the annual report of 1972 (published at the beginning of 1973) showed the mountain of Baxter instead of the building of Davis. This report/ratio mentioned the opening for 1979-1980 of this new attraction.
During the years 1970, plans of the park showed a city comparable with Thunder Mesa in the north-western part of Frontierland but more resembling Nature' S Wonderland that Big Thunder Mountain.
In May 1974, Card Walker announced the end of the phase One of Walt Disney World, thus requiring of Imagineers to concentrate on a new concept of park, EPCOT. The construction of Big Thunder Mountain started in Disneyland in 1977, opened in 1979 and was duplicated in Florida in 1980.
Marc Davis of sound with dimensions left Disney in 1978.
An attraction become a myth
Attraction Western To rivet Forwarding became at the same time a legend among Imagineers and a myth among attractions especially for the admirors of Marc Davis.
With each time the name of attraction would be proposed with the direction of Disney, a veto would be raised. Thus attraction by was not built in California nor with Tokyo Disneyland. But of many elements of the concept appeared in other attractions:
- the decoration of Big Thunder Mountain contains elements seeming to come from the concepts of Davis
- of the audio-animatronics close relations of the concept of Davis were used, in the form of homage, in Living with the Land
- a model of attraction was presented until 1981 in after spectacle of The Walt Disney Story and redécouverte in 1994 with the still functional luminaries
- the name of Thunder Mesa was used for the city at the entry of Frontierland of Disneyland Paris
- attractions at the time under development integrated elements:
AttractionAttraction was to be at the time largest ever built with an immense building accommodating a river and other attractions with the accesses.
Opening envisaged: middle of the years 1970.
- Cancellation: 1973
- Surface: close to 6 000 m
- Number of Audio-animatronic S: 150
Attraction was at the same time to be in interior, outside and around a new element architecturel extremely of Frontierland, a baptized mountain Thunder Mesa Mountain. After having embarked in a wood trunk, the visitors were to launch out in a punctuated tour of water fall. An owl audio-animatronic Hoot Gibson, being used as narrator would have to explain the safety regulations with the image of the death's-head of Pirates of the Caribbean.
Several scenes would have followed one another inside immense buildings of which:
- the attack of a bank
- an Indian camp sprinkled by the called upon rain a dance of the rain
- of the Mexican gangsters
- the plain of the dogs of meadows, bisons,…
- the arid Canyon (Dry Gulch)
- the saloon: with a cowboy perched on the roof, a barman seeking with him drawn top, three waitresses, a pianist and other cowboys
- the water fall
At one moment of the design of attraction, a " train of mine fou" part of the decoration would have divided while it was to circulate around the mountain. A visit with back of mule was also envisaged with the foot of Thunder Mesa Mountain with an Indian village Pueblo.
Thunder Mesa and the Western To rivet Epedition
- Why " River" western; Went South, Share 1 off 10
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