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Author Topic: Disneyland Fantasmic Fire  (Read 527 times)

Jonathan Johnson

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Re: Disneyland Fantasmic Fire
« Reply #10 on: April 25, 2023, 02:53:06 PM »

Pure speculation on my part, having only seen the video...

My wild-armchair guess is that a hydraulic line (if it's indeed operated by hydraulics) blew right as the dragon was breathing fire. I'd expect Disney to regularly inspect and preventively maintain this stuff, but if it's decades old, who knows? And rusting or fatigued wires inside the jacket of a hydraulic hose might not be readily obvious on a surface inspection.
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Stop confusing the issue with facts and logic!

Jeff Lelko

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Re: Disneyland Fantasmic Fire
« Reply #11 on: April 25, 2023, 10:25:47 PM »

Interesting for sure, though I haven't heard much further on the incident even from a few inside sources I have.  I doubt I ever will.

So for those that have never seen Fantasmic, the ~45ft tall dragon animgatronic emerges at the climax of the show and "breathes fire" to ignite an inferno in the show lagoon.  The Disneyland dragon and Disney World dragon are different - the California version is more of a "complete" puppet and rises from a pit below the stage.  A liquid is used twice during the sequence for the "breathing fire" effect - once during the lagoon ignition and again briefly during the dragon's demise after defeat by Mickey Mouse.  The effect is quite dramatic when it works.

The Disney World dragon is much more minimal - essentially a head and wings on a JLG lift that emerges through an upstage door built into the set.  The effect relies much more on darkness to hide the lack of an actual puppet.  The "breathing fire" effect is also much more minimal - basically a flaming comet shot into the lagoon versus a spraying liquid.   

I remember first seeing this show back in the early 90's -and it had already been there a while.
-How old was the mechanism and how much wasn't thought-of in the 80's when it was probably designed? -and how much was just left as-is over the decades (grandfathered)?

I can say for at least the Disneyland dragon, no, this is a relatively new revision of the character that came along sometime around 2008 and has seen several adjustments since - mostly due to somewhat poor reliability. 

Being the all-remembering internet I'll keep my personal speculations of the cause along with what response plans Disney had in place for such a mishap to myself for the time being, but regardless I agree that a technician running around the stage with a fire extinguisher while the remains of flammable liquids are spraying everywhere was a poor idea.  Sadly it can be very difficult to gauge how someone will respond to an emergency until they're in one... 

We've had several high-profile show accidents that have changed laws and everyone's outlook greatly about show safety since this show was installed.

That too.  The most recent incident that comes to mind is the flame incident that happened at the Tennessee Titans football game.  As a result, flame and infield pyro are no longer allowed at most major league sporting events (though I've been successful with Cold Spark). 
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Re: Disneyland Fantasmic Fire
« Reply #11 on: April 25, 2023, 10:25:47 PM »


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