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New Blue Sky Cellar Show Previews Little Mermaid and Unveils an ‘Animated’ Map

Michele Himmelberg

by , Public Relations Director, Disneyland Resort

I’ve noticed a curious thing about fans of the Disneyland Resort. As much as they like their favorite shows and attractions, they can’t wait to see what’s coming next to the parks. The hint of a new surprise has its own special thrill.

That’s why fans will be excited to visit the new show at Walt Disney Imagineering Blue Sky Cellar. It opens today with an exclusive preview of the next big attraction coming to Disney California Adventure park: The Little Mermaid ~ Ariel’s Undersea Adventure. Along with dozens of new models and concept drawings crafted by Disney Imagineers, you will see:

  • An artist’s rendering of the 86-foot long, hand-painted mural that will greet guests in the loading area of The Little Mermaid ~ Ariel’s Undersea Adventure.
  • Ariel Mural

  • A one-inch-to-the-foot scale model of Ursula, glowing in black-light paint, previewing her appearance in the attraction
  • A new video that gives you a behind-the-scenes look at how Imagineers are creating The Little Mermaid attraction
  • A full-size glass sample from the attraction entrance marquee, sitting right there on the Imagineer’s desktop where you can touch it

One of my favorite parts of the show is the night-time painting of Disney California Adventure park, in the alcove of the screening room. It’s a birds-eye view map that comes to life with 30 moving images that are projected onto the painting. If you stand and watch for a little while, you’ll see bubbles over Little Mermaid, Grizzly Rapids geysers, strikes of lightning at Twilight Zone Tower of Terror, “World of Color” fountains dancing at Paradise Bay and many more. I wonder if you’ll find the “hidden” effect!

Imagineers have used the latest in projection technology to bring this painting to life. It’s reminiscent of the way Walt Disney introduced Disneyland Park to his television guests back in the ‘50s using the latest black-light technology of the time, with a painting by artist Peter Ellenshaw that transformed the park from day to night.

Other highlights of the new show at Blue Sky Cellar include:

  • A preview of Goofy’s Sky School attraction and the new Paradise Pier dining locations that will open later this year
  • All-new attraction posters for California Screamin’, Mickey’s Fun Wheel and Silly Symphony Swings – designed in the style of traditional Disney theme park attraction posters
  • Concept art for the new park entrance, the Buena Vista Street entry plaza, and the Red Car Trolleys which will transport guests from the park entrance through Hollywood Land.

You can always check out what’s going on with the Disney California Adventure park expansion at www.disneycaliforniaadventure.com.

Who will be the first person to list 10 of the special effects on the new map of Disney California Adventure park?


  • Is there anything in the DCA expansion that won’t be shown in the Blue Sky Cellar?

  • I was there yesterday. It’s so great how they keep updating blue sky as the improvements continue. We are very excited about Goofys sky school, but didn’t see anything about it. How did we miss it?

  • This is a much better park “map” concept than the previous cartoony one that was first shown about a year ago. So realistic looking and exciting!

    That video is incredible. I would love to have that as my screensaver on my computer. A similar one for Disneyland would be great too.

  • How long with the painting be in the in the Blue Sky Cellar? I will be traveling to Disneyland in August, and I would like to see everything in the Blue Sky Cellar, along with the new Little Mermaid attraction!!

  • I’m intrigued by the small “figures” or shadows in the windows of the Grand California Hotel. There seems to be a sequence and they move from left to right. Will you give us any clues? Perhaps it’s 9:25 PM and people in their rooms are going to the window to see the fireworks at Disneyland!! Hope they dial the music up on their TV too!!

    Arizona Mike

  • I saw a copy of the Ariel Mural at the Blue Sky Cellar tonight and the entire picture is amazing! PLEASE tell me the date that the atratction will open. And guest who go to the BSC and look at the new map, there is a hidden mickey that appears every 3 minutes. Hint: Check the areas of the map where is not much ativites. Will the map has had its run in the cellar, can it be moved some where else in the park like maybe into guest relations or the information booth on Buena Vista Street, if not there than City Hall in Disneyland. I would hate to have such a great peice of art and animation go to waist!

  • I was at the Blue Sky Cellar today and saw all of this stuff in person. Very cool. I love all of the movement in that nighttime image.

  • Have never been before so not sure what it is called but the windows in the building on the lower right corner get a dark shadow.

  • Wow, lots of cool effects!
    The monorail is moving, the red car trolley is moving, the pendants on the top of the new entrance are waving, the Tower of Terror is being struck by lightening, World of Color is performing, Radiator Springs Racer is running (I wish actually was!), the Hyperion Theater’s sign is lighting up, it looks like Flo’s V8 Cafe sign is lighting up, Grizzly River Run has rafts running in it and geysers going off, lights are lighting up on top of the Soarin’ building, colored spotlights are shining momentarily in the backlot, there is movement in Bug’s Land, and Goofy’s Sky School looks to be running! So cool! Wish I could get to DCA to see it in person!

  • and to add to my last comment there are also flags moving at the front entrance.

  • world of color going on and also the water is moving.
    lights on top of soring over california.
    monorail going by.
    tower of terror lightning.
    a bus going down the street.
    lights in the sky at the entrance.
    lights in hollywood backlot.
    cars driving in new cars land.
    there are people on the grizzle river run.
    also something going on in bugs life land but i cant tell.

  • World of Color
    Flashing lights in Radiator Springs
    Lightning @ ToT
    Geysers @ Grizzly Rapids
    Flashing lights on Soarin’
    Cars on the Race track
    Vehicle going down the street
    Ride vehicles on Grizzly Rapids
    Colored searchlights on Backlot
    Fireflies in a bug’s life area

    • Congrats everyone on finding the moving images. There are even more in the park at Blue Sky Cellar. And great job, Derrick – you even identified the fireflies in A Bug’s Land.

  • lightning on tower of terror
    monorail going by
    radiator springs racers cars
    world of color fountains
    lights flashing on soaring over california
    trolley cars
    hyperion theater lighted sign
    grizzy river rapids raft
    bubbles on little mermaid

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