Snow White's Scary Adventures
|Snow White's Scary Adventures|
|The exterior of Snow White's Scary Adventures|
|Opening date||October 1, 1971 (As Snow White's Adventures}|
|Closing date||May 31, 2012|
|Ride duration||3:00 minutes|
|Based on||Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs|
|Previously Known As||Snow White's Adventures|
|Replaced By||Princess Fairytale Hall|
When Disney was initially planning out Walt Disney World's Fantasyland, Snow White's Adventures was not going to be included in the new park. Although a popular Disneyland ride since 1955, Imagineers decided that they did not want to simply copy Disneyland's Fantasyland dark rides (Snow White's Adventures, Mr. Toad's Wild Ride, and Peter Pan's Flight) . Instead, Disney planned on replacing Snow White's Adventures with a Sleeping Beauty attraction that would have had guests come face to face with Maleficent in her dragon form . Imagineers were overruled by Roy O. Disney however, when the later stipulated that the Fantasyland dark rides be brought into the Magic Kingdom , and thus Snow White's Adventures opened with the rest of the Magic Kingdom on October 1, 1971 .
While Snow White's Adventures proved to be popular upon its opening, the attraction was the frequent target of complaints by guests. Like its Disneyland counterpart, the original version of Snow White's Adventures did not feature the title character at all. Instead, the attraction was designed so that guests took the place of the film's heroine and experienced the events as if they were Snow White. Because of the esoteric approach that Imagineers took to telling the attraction's story, many guests did not understand that they were essentially Snow White's stand in, and frequently asked where the princess was. The second complaint that was often lofted at the attraction, was that it was simply too scary. The ethos of Snow White's Adventures was dark and menacing, a tone that many guests did not expect from a Fantasyland dark ride.
In response to guest concerns about the frightening nature of Snow White's Adventures, Disney attempted two remedies in order to warn guests. The first change came in 1983 when Disney began referring to the attraction as "Snow White's Scary Adventures" . This rename, in conjunction with the addition of a sing warning guests to "beware the Wicked Witch" as she may frighten small children, was Disney's attempt to prepare guests for the dark tone of the attraction that awaited guests.
The original version of Snow White's Scary Adventures continued to run until the Fall of 1994, when the attraction closed for refurbishment. During the closure of the attraction, Disney attempted to answer the two complaints that often plagued Snow White's Scary Adventures. To this end, a large number of changes were made that changed both the story the attraction told, as well as its ethos.The first noticeable change to Snow White's Scary Adventures was the addition of a third row in the ride vehicles . Inside the attraction itself, the Castle Courtyard scene was expanded so that a vignette showing Snow White lazing in the sun was now present. The Evil Queen in this scene was also moved to a new window and no longer parted the curtains. While the original 1971 Evil Queen figure was still used, she was repositioned to be leaning on the window now.
Further in the attraction, inside the Queen's Castle, guests now came face to face with Slave in the Magic Mirror before entering the Throne Room. After making a sharp turn away from the mirror, guests would enter the Throne Room, where the Queen stood in front of the original 1971 Magic Mirror. The room itself was more fully adorned in the 1994 version of the attraction, with blue curtains and the Queen's raven atop her fluorescent throne.
Deeper in the Queen's Castle, the dungeon was also heavily modified. The second half of the dungeon, where a skeleton was seen chained to the wall, was replaced with the Wicked Witch at her Cauldron (which had previously been featured later in the attraction). In this scene, much of the laboratory equipment was no longer present (although the raven remained). Furthermore, a huge Book of Spells could now be seen. Finally new dialogue was added to this scene, with the Witch exclaiming "When Snow White bites the apple, she will sleep forever, awakened only by Love's First Kiss".
Following the dungeon scene, entirely new scenes were added to the 1994 version of Snow White's Scary Adventures. First, the Huntsman was featured, warning Snow White to run into the woods. Further ahead, Snow White was added, terrified in the forest.
As opposed to the original attraction, the Dark Forest area was toned down and made less scary. Further ahead, the Wicked Witch on the boat still appeared, however the majority of the Castle Lake scene was removed. In its place were a couple of the "monster trees", with less frightening appearances.
Inside the Seven Dwarf's Cottage, guests could now see Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs dancing and having a celebration. The Dwarfs were located in the first room of the cottage, that originally featured eerie eyes. Further into the cottage, scared animals could now be seen in the window, and the original 1971 cottage staircase (where the Dwarfs were originally seen), now sat empty. Finally, in this portion of the cottage, audio animatronic figures of Snow White and the Wicked Witch were now featured, with the Witch offering Snow White a bite of the poison apple and proclaiming, "That's right, dearie! Now, take a bite and all your dreams will come true."
Having apparently succeeded in getting Snow White to bite the apple, the Wicked Witch now screeched "Now I am the fairest one of all". Leaving the cottage and reentering the woods, Doc now yelled ""It's the Quicked Ween -- the Wicked Queen! Come on men!"
Back in the woods, dialogue was added to indicate that the Dwarfs were chasing the Witch through the woods. The attraction then transitioned to a shortened version of the Diamond Mine scene. Here, Bashful and Sneezy were seen searching for the the Witch. These were the same figures that had originally appeared in the 1971 Seven Dwarf's Cottage scene.
Quickly leaving the mine, and heading to the cliffs, guests passed by the other five Dwarfs pointing towards the Witch, who was perched on a cliff above. These five figures were again reused from the original 1971 Seven Dwarfs Cottage scene. The other change to come to the cliff scene, was that the Witch now shrieked "I'll crush you, fools" to guests, as she tried to drop a giant boulder on them. At this point however lightning struck the hag.
Finally, the 1994 version of Snow White's Adventures featured a new happy ending as the finale. In this additional scene (which necessitated the shortening of the aforementioned mine scene) Snow White is awaken by a kiss from the Prince. Guests then passed under a waving Dopey, before passing a mural of Snow White and the Prince waving goodbye.
Following the 1994 refurbishment, Snow White's Scary Adventures remained essentially unchanged until May 31, 2012 when the attraction was permanently closed . The closure of the ride came in conjunction with the 2012 Fantasyland Expansion that promised to add a new Snow White attraction, the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train. On February 2012, Disney had previously announced that a new meet and greet location called Princess Fairytale Hall would be constructed in the former location of Snow White's Scary Adventures .
Following the closure of Snow White's Scary Adventures, some figures from the attraction were moved to aforementioned Seven Dwarfs Mine Train. These included the two vultures who originally appeared to guests in forest, as well as Bashful, Doc, Happy, Grumpy, and Sleepy which were moved from the Cottage scene to the new attraction's finale. Contrary to popular belief, the Snow White, Dopey and Sneezy were not reused figures, but were created specifically for the Mine Train.
Original Version (1971-1994)
Snow White's Scary Adventures began in the Evil Queen's Castle Courtyard. Here, guests could see a miniature version of the Wishing Well that was seen in the original 1937 film, while Snow White sang the song "I'm Wishing" in the background.After circling the Wishing Well, guest's ride vehicle would head towards the Seven Dwarfs Cottage, before making a "u-turn" and approaching the Evil Queen standing in the window. As guests approached, the Queen would part her curtains and glare menacingly below. Guests would then continue forward, entering the castle and the Queen's Throne Room. In this room, guests saw the Queen transform before their eyes into the Wicked Witch. In front of her Magic Mirror, the Queen would begin "Mirror, Mirror on the Wall" before transforming into the hideous hag and screeching "I am the fairest one of all!"
Getting away from the Witch, and moving farther into the castle, guests entered the Queen's Dungeon. Here, they passed a series of skeletons who moved their jaws and warned guests to escape while they still could.
Ignoring the skeleton's warnings and moving on in the castle, guests passed by the Wicked Witch's lab equipment, as her pet raven sat watching, perched atop a skull. Further into the scene, the Wicked Witch could be seen at her cauldron, preparing her poison apple for Snow White. As guests passed the Witch, she would cackle "Have an apple, dearie?". The ride vehicles would then pass under a falling lab shelf, escaping just before being hit, and exiting the castle. Outside the Queen's Castle, guests found themselves on a lake at the edge of a forest. Here the Wicked Witch would float by on a boat, offering her poison apple to guests.
Entering the Dark Forest, guests would see ominous crocodiles eyeing the ride vehicles as they passed by. After the last group of crocodiles attempted to snap at guests as they passed by, the ride vehicles drove deeper into the forest, where monster trees with red eyes surrounded them. Throughout the forest guests could see pairs of glowing eyes, looking on as they traveled farther and farther in. Within the forest a "banshee wail" could be heard in the distance.
After traveling through the forest, guests would eventually reach the Seven Dwarf's Cottage. Here unseen eyes continued to watch. Inside the cottage, anthropomorphic objects with frightened eyes surrounded guests. Guests then entered the next room, where the Seven Dwarfs were seen climbing their stairs. Full of trepidation, the Dwarfs seemed to be climbing towards a demon-like shadow which sat atop the staircase. In this scene, the eye motif that carried throughout the attraction, continued in the form of little owl carvings on the stairway's banister. At the end of the cottage scene, guests once again came face to face with the Wicked Witch, who appeared at the cottage door, offering her apple.
Exiting the cottage, and re-entering the woods, guests would once again saw the Wicked Witch holding her apple. Perched above the antagonist, were two vultures who looked on.
After moving through the forest again, guests reached the Seven Dwarf's Diamond Mine, where "a million diamonds" glimmered all around. Despite the beauty of the jewels, and the visually impressive "endless" mineshaft, the Wicked Witch remained omnipresent. As guests traveled through the mine, the witch could be heard moving around. She would then appear, attempting to crush guests by bushing a timber beam off its support columns.
Once again surviving the witch's murderous attempt, the ride vehicles continued deeper into the mineshaft, which seemed to be collapsing. At the end of the shaft, a speeding minecart almost collided with guests, as a cackling Witch could be heard in the in the distance. Entering the mine's vault, guests could see giant diamonds all around. As they headed for the door however, the Wicked Witch could be seen above, prying a giant diamond loose, and attempting to drop it on guests. At this moment, guests could hear the Witch screech "Goodbye, dearie" and the door vanished with crash.
Having apparently been killed by the Wicked Witch, guests entered a short passageway, where stars were illuminated around them, and strobe lights were in effect. In the distance, guests could hear a distorted version of the Witch's cackle, before exiting the ride.
Second Version 1994-2012
Like its predecessor, the second version of Snow White's Scary Adventures began with guests leaving the load area and circling around the Wishing Well in the Castle Courtyard. Moving deeper into the courtyard, guests would then see Snow White, sitting in the sun and holding a dove on her finger. While the scene seemed serene, the Evil Queen looked on from her window above. Leaving the courtyard, guests moved on into the Queen's Castle.
Inside the Queen's Castle, guests came face to face with the Slave in the Magic Mirror, who pronounced "Alas, Snow White is the Fairest One of All". At this point, the vehicles took a sharp turn and continued into the Queen's Throne Room. Here, the Queen could be seen standing in front of her mirror, with outstretched arms. As guests passed by, the Queen would transform into the Wicked Witch before guest's eyes.
After witnessing the awful transformation, guests continued deeper into the castle, first arriving at the dungeon. Here, a skeleton could be seen on the floor and the red eyes of rats ominously glared at guests as they passed by. In the dungeon scene, guests would also see the Wicked Witch at her caldron, working on a spell. Here, she would explain that "When Snow White bites the apple, she will sleep forever, awakened only by Love's First Kiss", before maniacally laughing.
Exiting the castle, guests ran into the Hunstman in the forest outside, where he warned Snow White to run and hide in the forest. Heeding her advice, Snow White was then shown petrified by the dark and monstrous trees that surrounded her.
Entering the Dark Forest, guests travelled deeper into darkness. Although the Castle Lake scene was largely removed from the attraction, guests still saw the Wicked Witch float by on her boat, and a few crocodile logs. In a similar fashion to the rest of the attraction, both the forest, and the Monster Trees that resided within, were tampered down.Exiting the forest, guests approached the Seven Dwarf's Cottage. Outside, Snow White's animal friends could be seen, welcoming guests to the house. Entering the cottage, guests came upon Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs who were joyously singing and dancing. Further in the cottage, guests saw some of Snow White's animal friends looking frighteningly through the window.
Ahead, guests realized the reason for the animal's expression. Here, Snow White was tempted by the Wicked Witch and her poison red apple. To encourage the Princess to eat, the Wicked Witch noted, "That's right, dearie! Now, take a bite and all your dreams will come true."
As guests exited the cottage and headed back for the woods, Doc exclaimed "It's the Quicked Ween -- the Wicked Queen! Come on men!" As the Dwarfs chased the the Witch through the forest, lighting would illuminate the hag standing on a nearby cliff. Although guests couldn't see the chase itself, the Dwarfs continued to chase the Witch until they reached the Diamond Mine.
Inside the Diamond Mine, guests would see Bashful and Sneezy continuing their search for the Witch. before exclaiming that she was getting away.
Exiting the mine, guests found themselves back outside in the cliffs. Here, five of the Dwarfs, (everyone minus Bashful and Sneezy who were shown in the mine) pointed towards the Wicked With who stood perched atop a cliff, ready to drop a boulder on guests below. As the Wicked Witch shrieked " "I'll crush you, fools", a bolt of lightning struck her ledge and plummeted her into darkness.
After the defeat of the Witch, guests continued on to a suddenly bright and cheerful forest, where the Prince looked over a sleeping Snow White, prepared to kiss her. Guests then passed under a bridge, where Dopey and some forest friends waved goodbye. Nearby, Snow White and the Princess also waved goodbye, and farewell's from the Dwarfs could be heard in the background.
Snow White- Mary Kay Bergman
The Queen/Wicked Witch- Ginny Tyler (1971)
Magic Mirror- Tony Jay
Doc- Jim Cummings
Huntsman- Pete Renaday
Sneezy- Bob Joles
Raven- Candy Candido (unconfirmed)
Fun Fact and Trivia
- When entering the Queen's Castle, guests could see a coat of arms, and the initials WCS. This is a reference to West Coast Scenic, a construction company who helped with the second version of Snow White's Scary Adventures .
- When guest pass through the Evil Queen's laboratory, they can read her open spell book. The recipe she uses to turn into the Wicked Witch is: Mummy Dust, Black of Night, Old Hag's Cackle, and Scream of Fright .
- In the Witch's spell book it says that the antidote to her poson is "Love's First Kiss" .
- This information comes Imagineer Tony Baxter, as interviewed here: https://allears.net/wdw-chronicles-year-one-the-wdw-that-almost-was/