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All in the Details: Imagineers Add Character to Belle’s Village in New Fantasyland at Magic Kingdom Park

posted on August 14th, 2012 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Editorial Content Manager

This week, our “All in the Details” post is taking on a video twist thanks to our friends at Walt Disney Imagineering, who recently installed the centerpiece of Belle’s Village – an elaborate bronze statue of Gaston and his sidekick, Lefou.

As Imagineers Ted Robledo and Chris Kelly explain here, the statue’s design of Gaston and Lefou juggling leaky barrels and mugs was inspired by both Gaston’s boisterous temperament and the fountain Belle visits early in the film as she is reading. Ted and Chris also walk us through the detailed process it takes to create such an elaborate bronze statue – from building a clay maquette to choosing specific shades of bronze for the piece.

For reference, the fountain sits in the center of Belle’s Village in New Fantasyland. The building that appears behind the fountain is Gaston’s Tavern, while the structure directly across is Bonjour! Village Gifts.

And as we shared last week, each of these experiences will grand open December 6 (with general previews beginning November 19).

Don’t miss the other video sneak peeks that Walt Disney Imagineering has previously shared here on the Disney Parks Blog, including a behind-the-scenes look at the installation of three massive chandeliers and a French countryside mural in the Be Our Guest Restaurant.

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Filed: Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World Resort



Carrie on August 14th, 2012 at 10:07 am

Yay! It looks fantastic! I love these behind the scenes video tours!


Jennifer Fickley-Baker on August 14th, 2012 at 10:08 am

Thanks, Carrie. I’m happy we can share them with you. We have some great pals at Imagineering.


Alberto from ON on August 14th, 2012 at 10:12 am

Thanks for all your updates. Just love seeing magic come to life!


Philip on August 14th, 2012 at 10:16 am

Where do I sign up to become an Imagineer??? What an awesome job that would be!


Shannon on August 14th, 2012 at 10:23 am

Thank you so much for sharing all the behind the scenes videos, pictures, etc. I am so excited for this area to open and can’t wait to see it in person. :)


Natalia from Santa Catarina on August 14th, 2012 at 10:29 am

Dear Jennifer, I have writen you an e-mail but I guess it’s easier to talk here :)
I am going away from orlando on Nov 19th in the morning, which is very sad but I have the oportunity to change my ticket. These previews are going to be for everyone in the park? Will we be able to visit the area already on nov 19th? I don’t want to miss it for a day! Thanks a lot for your reply :)


Jennifer Fickley-Baker on August 14th, 2012 at 10:34 am

Previews are open to all park guests beginning on Nov. 19. The preview period means that attractions/experiences may have shorter operating times.


Kalya on August 14th, 2012 at 10:48 am

now that there is Belle’s village to viset and since Gaston is such a huge part of it, will there be meet and greets with Gaston and/or Lefou?


rhonda on August 14th, 2012 at 11:10 am

Thanks so much for all of the wonderful updates on the new Fantasyland :) I can’t wait for our trip to wdw from nov.27th- dec. 4th. So happy we will be able to see this area during the preview time ! Will the new tent in storybook circus with the characters posted last week be open then also ?


kristy from NJ on August 14th, 2012 at 11:18 am

When will previews begin for passholders?


Jennifer Fickley-Baker on August 16th, 2012 at 8:40 am

No date has been announced yet. Stay tuned.


Daphne on August 14th, 2012 at 12:10 pm

I love see disney.


Charles from NJ on August 14th, 2012 at 1:00 pm

I noticed in the artist renderings that Gaston originally was holding a gun of some sort. The final statue now has him holding another keg. What was the reasoning for the switch?


Meredith from VA on August 14th, 2012 at 2:58 pm

What a great description of the process! Will Bonjour Gifts feature some new or exclusive items, or will it primarily be merchandise that’s available elsewhere in Disney World? So excited to explore when we are there Nov. 23-Dec. 1!


Bradley from TX on August 15th, 2012 at 8:54 am

I noticed that from the concept drawing to the actual statue, his gun was removed. Why?


Stephanie on August 15th, 2012 at 11:58 am

The gun removal seems like a good choice. Disney is smart that way.

I’ll be in Disney for my honeymoon in September, but it looks like I’ll have to make another trip shortly after to see new Fantasyland!! oh, darn. :)


David on August 15th, 2012 at 5:50 pm

Any word on Be Our Guest reservation date? Heard August 20th.??


Anthony on August 15th, 2012 at 8:47 pm

hey I had a fantasy land question actually about the castle. How come they dont talk about the suite anymore??? can people still stay there? would love to see an article about it. Its on all the disney tv specials and havent heard much about it in recent years…. how bout a update???


Debra from ON on August 16th, 2012 at 1:33 am

Jennifer, I have read today on many other Disney related web sites that Advanced Dining Reservations for Be Our Guest restaurant will open up on August 20th. Is what these other sites are writing true?


Carol on August 19th, 2012 at 12:51 am

I just did a search for Be Our Guest restaurant and it came up with the lunch and dinner sample menu’s, it states that we will be able to start booking over the phone on Monday August 20th, and online booking starts on Wednesday August 22nd. So very excited to finally be able to book


Terri on August 21st, 2012 at 2:13 pm

No one has statue made of himself like Gaston!