Unfortunately, due to multiple technical issues, Disneyland’s nighttime “Fantasmic!” show will be on hiatus through at least the Spring of 2024. When it does return, sorcerer Mickey will no longer be fighting a dragon version of Maleficent either. The reason for this really boils down to safety concerns for park guests and staff.
The “Fantasmic!” show has Mickey Mouse exploring the possibilities of his imagination. That is until some Disney villains team up in an attempt to create a horrible nightmare for him. The whole thing culminates in a huge puppet of Maleficent in her dragon squaring off with our beloved mouse. As a part of the act, she spits fire and sets an entire river near Tom Sawyer Island blaze.
As cool as the special is, fire, no matter how careful you are, is always dangerous. On April 22nd, the puppet malfunctioned. It not only set itself alight, but it also consumed a small part of Tom Sawyer Island along with it. Due to safety concerns, the park originally announced it would suspend “Fantasmic!” through the summer. Disneyland also “temporarily suspending fire effects similar to those used at Disneyland park’s ‘Fantasmic’ at select shows and entertainment experiences globally.” To ensure that these issues were not present in other areas of the park.
The amusement park has now extended the show’s hiatus through the spring of next year. Disneyland has also made the decision to do away with the dragon altogether. This makes sense considering the prop is so riddled with issues that park patrons nicknamed her Murphy, after Murphy’s Law.
While it seems like “Fantasmic!” will continue to end with a Maleficent showdown. She just won’t be taking on her fire-spewing dragon form.
As great as the imagineering team is at making magic look real. It just isn’t worth the possible risk to park guests, staff, and other attractions to keep fixing the dragon. After the fire, a few employees even had to be treated for smoke inhalation.
We’ll keep you posted on updates about “Fantasmic!” as they become available.