Behind The Cars Land Scene, Talking With The Imagineers #BraveCarsLandEvent

Photo provided courtesy of Disney
with approval to use

You already know my thrill over Disney California Adventures new Cars Land and if you don’t check out my reviews here. I’ve shared the amazingness they call Cars Land and some of the rides but today I want to share a little with you from the people who made Cars Land a reality. It definitely takes some great Imagineers to come up with a land this fun. While on the #BraveCarsLandEvent all the bloggers had a chance to sit down with some of the people behind Cars Land and I just had to share a bit of what we learned.

Here are some questions we got to hear Kathy Mangum answer in person. Kathy is the Executive Producer and Vice Presiden of Walt Disney Imagineering.

Q: How much area does Cars Land actually make up of the park?
A: It’s twelve acres, total. The majority of it was parking lot, so it’s an expansion of Disney California Adventure. Then half of that is Radiator Springs Racers. Half of that, it’s a solid six acres and, and you know, because you went on it. When you go through the tunnel, after you get in your car and go on the road trip, you can go in the tunnel, and you’re in this black light immersive, story-driven audio animatronic story, there’s a big, big, big building behind that mountain where all that takes place. So it’s a huge land. Almost the same size as Tomorrow Land at Disneyland, just a little bit smaller.

Q: When we were there yesterday (at Radiator Springs Racers), the wait time was around four hours. What’s been the longest?
A: I think the longest was on opening day, and I think it was peaking at five hours. Opening day, is always your most challenging day. Actually, the whole opening summer will be very popular, very crowded.

Q: What was the time frame?
A: It was about 5 years.

Q: Did you work with the filmmakers?
A: We did. We worked very closely with, John Lasseter, the director. Especially up front when we were really establishing certain things that you don’t see in the movie. Like Taillight Caverns was not in the film, and so we worked together on that. Then some of the designers, Bob Pauley, was one of the production designers on the film. He helped us design the Radiator Springs racers ride vehicles, and Bill Cone, he was one of the production designers on the movie, and if you see the Art of Cars book, he’s got beautiful, beautiful pastel drawings of some of the backgrounds in Ornament Valley and others. Those are Bill’s drawings, and he worked with us on the color for the mountain. He had to come down. So, you know, it’s not often you get to work with people that talented and that knowledgeable to help you translate their movie and, and this was fantastic, a fantastic relationship.

Q: What ages for the rides in Cars Land ?
A: They’re for all ages, on Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree and Luigi’s Flying Tires the height restriction is thirty-two inches, so for very small kids. And Radiator Springs Racers is a forty inch height restriction. We did want every attraction to be for everybody. So we don’t have an attraction that’s just for little kids and one that’s just for teenagers. We have attractions are for the entire family to experience. We did that very deliberately. Because even I think the high, highest thrill, high speed part of Radiator Springs Racers is not extreme. It’s thrilling, but it’s not gonna close out people who don’t like coasters or are afraid of heights and things that other, maybe more extreme attractions do. Because you’ve got this great story in the back, and you’ve got these characters that kids love interacting with, talking to you. We wanted kids to be able to see that. We did not want to close anybody out.

I loved talking with Kathy and getting to know more about the story behind Cars Land. Not only was the land itself amazing, but the way it came about and the work that went into it was just as amazing. The part that got me was all the hand detail that went into the massive mountains. You seriously have to see it for yourself.  Don’t forget to follow all my #BraveCarsLandEvent posts by clicking that link.

*Disney/Pixar sponsored this trip and most costs involved. Opinions are always my own and not influenced in any way. For more on my policies please see my disclosure under the PR Friendly tab.

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Toni is a professional lifestyle blogger living on the sunny Florida Gulf Coast. She has a passion for Disney, Travel, Fashion, Cooking, Tech, Family Fun Ideas, Reviews, Giveaways and loves being able to share that with her readers!


  1. 1

    I bet my family would love it.

  2. 2
    April Decheine

    Great interview! Such interesting information.

  3. 3

    Ooh, fun interview!

  4. 4

    I had no idea it was so big!

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