The Princess and the Frog fans rejoice! Tiana is finally getting her own theme park ride.
Way back in 2020, Disney announced that it would finally re-theme its popular attraction Splash Mountain and officially center it around Princess Tiana. In case you haven’t been to Disneyland or Walt Disney World in a while, Splash Mountain currently features characters from Disney’s very racist 1946 film Song of the South, a movie so problematic it hasn’t left the Disney vault since 1986 and has never been released on home video. Now, that’s all set to change, as Tiana’s Bayou Adventure is officially coming in 2024.
Per the Disney Parks Blog, Tiana’s Bayou Adventure picks up where the animated film left off, following Tiana, Naveen and Louis on a musical journey through the bayou “as they prepare to host a one-of-a-kind Mardi Gras celebration where everyone is welcome.” So far, Disney has only announced a re-theme, which I assume means the basic structure of the popular log-ride will stay intact (you’ll probably still get the big drop at the end). Fans can likely also expect some modern updates since Splash Mountain was built in the ‘80s.
Details for the new ride were announced Friday at the famous Preservation Hall in New Orleans at the ESSENCE Festival of Culture. During a panel moderated by Victoria Uwumarogie, senior lifestyle editor at ESSENCE Magazine, Charita Carter, executive producer of relevancy activations at Walt Disney Imagineering, discussed how the ride will be influenced by New Orleans’ unique culture.
“In many ways, Tiana’s Bayou Adventure is a love letter to New Orleans. Like the musical city that inspired this attraction, Tiana’s second act is about a community working in harmony to achieve something extraordinary,” Carter said. “She reminds us of an immutable truth we can all relate to: ‘If you do your best each and every day, good things are sure to come your way.’ And that’s a melody we can all sing along to!”
There was also a live performance from the Preservation Hall Jazz Band and the legendary Jenifer Lewis, who voices Mama Odie in the movie.
“It is really exciting to know that Princess Tiana’s presence in both Disneyland and Magic Kingdom will finally be fully realized,” the film’s star Anika Noni Rose said when the project was announced. “As passionate as I am about what we created, I know the fans are going to be over the moon. The Imagineers are giving us The Princess and the Frog Mardi Gras celebration we’ve been waiting for, and I’m here for it!”