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‘Fantasmic’ to return to Disneyland for Summer 2024, sans dragon

The 'nighttime spectacular' returns in time for Memorial Day weekend without the problematic dragon that burst into unscripted flames

While Disneyland found a temporary replacement for their Fantasmic live performance show ever since it was shut down by an inferno early this year, the beloved attraction will officially be returning in Summer of 2024.

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According to Disneyland officials, the “Fantasmic nighttime spectacular” will be returning to Disneyland’s Rivers of America on May 24, the Friday of Memorial Day weekend.

While at first technicians worked to repair the 45-foot dragon that caught fire, it has been revealed that the dragon will not make a return to the show, and will instead be replaced by an extended and reworked battle scene between Sorcerer Mickey and Maleficent. The dragon had been notorious for breakdowns and malfunctions stretching over a decade, and has officially been retired.

Disneyland officials say they will reveal more information regarding Fantasmic’s return in the upcoming months.


The following was originally published September 11, 2023: 

Disney has finally found a replacement attraction for their Fantasmic live performance show, which shut down after a 45-foot dragon was engulfed in flames earlier this year.

Titled “The Heartbeat of New Orleans – A Living Mural,” the new attraction will open September 29th. Disney describes the Disneyland attraction as, “set to a dynamic jazz score, projections on the Rivers of America will tell a short, whimsical tale of a mischievous little frog from the bayou that leaps into the lively heartbeat of New Orleans when he is lured by the jazzy sounds he hears in the distance.”

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Disney says that the show will feature an art installation that will animate pieces of original artwork by Disney Live Entertainment graphic designer Marcella “Marci” Swett, which will be projected onto Tom Sawyer Island’s waterfront buildings.

The new attraction will run while the Fantasmic show is reworked through Spring of 2024. Disney has commented that the scene that resulted in a fire will be completely retooled, and that the climax will not see the return of the 45-foot dragon.


The following was originally published April 25, 2023: 

Video has emerged of the firestorm that broke out at Disneyland on Saturday. The fire occurred during ‘Fantasmic,’ a live performance show that features pyrotechnics, water displays, and a 45 foot fire-breathing dragon. Maleficent, the dragon in question, experienced a malfunction that caused its head to catch fire, as shown in the footage.

As the fire quickly spread over the rest of the dragon, Disney employees could be heard ushering the crowd to leave the area over loudspeaker, as “the show cannot continue due to unforeseen circumstances.” While no injuries were reported, the area immediately surrounding the show was evacuated due to wind carrying the plumes of smoke throughout the premises.

See also: Disneyland guests get a well-lit look at dark ride when Peter Pan’s Flight breaks down

Disney says that the cause of the fire is currently under investigation, and that any fire effects to be used in shows will be suspended at all Disney parks due to ‘an abundance of caution.’


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