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Disneyland, California Adventure debut new rides

June 2, 2011 12:00:00 AM PDT
If you haven't been to Disneyland or to Disney California Adventure lately, there's a few new reasons to go back. Check out Disney's newest attractions.

Visitors to Disneyland and California Adventure will have two new experiences to write home about -- one brand new, and the other a major overhaul of a longtime favorite.

The spaceship cabin in Star Tours is now presented in razor-sharp digital 3-D.

"We're a Star Wars agency carrying people to different destinations, and we tried to pick lots of different destinations that the fans would really like," said Star Tours Producer Steve Roach. "We tried to do as many different story combinations, so every time our guests ride, they'll experience some differences."

Which means you can ride Star Tours over and over and over again and not experience the same adventure.

But if a daredevil trip through the cosmos isn't your cup of tea, you can drink in an ocean's worth of stunning animatronics.

"We have the Little Mermaid, Ariel's Undersea Adventure, so we're sitting in our own clamshell, just gone under the water, and we're going to take a ride through Ariel's world," said Little Mermaid Producer, Lisa Girolami.

It's been more than 20 years since "The Little Mermaid" first hit the big screen, and now it's become one of the main attractions at California Adventure, thanks to advances in ride technology.

"It's an amazing amalgamation of an incredible system of Imagineers coming together to create a ride, a five-and-a-half-minute experience that you will never think of all that went into it," said Little Mermaid Project Manager Frank Antonides.

"Technology has finally caught up with us to enable us to create the characters we created in the way that we wanted to," said Little Maid Producer Lisa Girolami. "We've got well over a hundred characters just in this scene alone that we're in, which is called 'Under the Sea.' We have 128 characters."

The Little Mermaid is a constantly moving ride, which means you get more people on and off each day.

The Little Mermaid and Star Tours make their public debut Friday morning.

Disney is the parent company of ABC7.

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