One of the leading questions for anyone with an upcoming Disneyland trip is “When will we see the return of Fantasmic! and World of Color?” While we do not have a definitive date from Disneyland just yet, I do have some speculation on the time frame that I want to share with our readers!
Keep in mind that this is just purely speculation about when Fantasmic and World of Color will return – we do not have any insider information on the return of these shows but often it can be worthwhile to predict Disneyland’s next move…
In the past, we’ve been pretty good at using historical Disneyland operations to predict future dates and schedules.
CONFIRMED! My speculation was correct! The Main Street Electrical Parade, Disneyland Forever and World of Color will return on April 22nd! “Fantasmic!” will return to Disneyland park on May 28th!.
Disney Announces Return of Fantasmic! and World of Color
Disneyland first announced the return of Fantasmic! and World of Color in a Disney Parks Blog post on December 9th 2021. The initial announcement just referenced 2022 without any specific time frame. The most recent reference to the return of these nighttime spectaculars was in the Disney Parks Blog post discussing the SoCal Residents ticket deal:
Return of Nighttime Spectaculars: The classic fan-favorite “Main Street Electrical Parade” will light up Disneyland park in time for the parade’s 50th anniversary year, and guests will be treated to the return of nighttime spectaculars at Disneyland Resort this spring, with “Fantasmic!”, “World of Color” and the “Disneyland Forever” fireworks spectacular.
The inclusion of this information on Fantasmic! and World of Color appears to confirm that these nighttime spectaculars will return in Spring. So the next question becomes: How does Disneyland define Spring?
The thing to keep in mind is when Disney says Spring it generally includes a time frame that covers January-early June which is longer than what the typical definition of Spring is. But we also have a rough time frame, based on the fact that the return of Fantasmic! and World of Color was mentioned when advertising the new SoCal Resident ticket deal. The time frame for this discount runs until May 26th 2022.
While this doesn’t give us a specific month within our general time frame of Spring, I would place all my bets on the fact that we will see the return of Fantasmic! and World of Color by May 26th unless there are issues outside of Disney’s control (I’m looking at you, World of Color.) How much stock do I put into this guess? Well, enough to plan my own trip for that following week with the certain hope that these nighttime spectaculars will return.
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Another question I’ve seen raised as we discuss the return of Fantasmic! and World of Color is: will dining packages return? I absolutely think dining packages for both Fantasmic! and World of Color (including my favorite World of Color dessert party– read my review to see why I loved it!) will return. We’ve already seen dining packages return for parades and due to their popularity I would bet my hat (maybe even my collectible Minnie Ears!) that we’ll see them return once both nighttime spectaculars do.
It’s uncertain as to how Disney will handle other ways of reserving a seat for the show since previously you could snag a spot by grabbing a FastPass for either show. Since Fastpass has now been replaced by Genie+ I wouldn’t be surprised to see the same thing offered but just through the Genie+ program. We’ve seen this happening already at Walt Disney World during the holiday season and with other daytime entertainment so I would imagine this will be how Disneyland will handle it. In these cases reserved viewing for shows was included in the general Genie+ price and not an additional charge.
Will this mean these reserved seats will no longer be free since you will have to use Genie+ or book a dining package? Unfortunately, that could be the case. But I don’t foresee Disneyland removing the general seating that has always been available to guests that did not have a dining package or FastPass, it is likely that will remain. Regardless… I always recommended dining packages to guests! We have experienced many of these ourselves and it’s a great way to combine a meal at a restaurant we’d usually dine at regardless with reserved seating. I’ve always found dining packages, especially for Fantasmic!, to be worth it.
Speculation of Return of Fantasmic! and World of Color
Now that I’ve discussed speculation rooted more strongly in evidence that we will see the return of Fantasmic! and World of Color by May 26th, the next question becomes: what date will they return? This question leads us further away from fact and more in the murky world of rumors along with just general observations of what is going on in the park. Everything in this realm should be taken with a large grain of salt!
So with that in mind, here’s some general information that gives us (potential) clues that a return of Fantasmic! and World of Color will happen sooner than May:
- Currently, the underground fountains for Fantasmic! have been under constant work, enough so that it has disrupted the natural route the rafts take to Tom Sawyer’s Island with guests being rerouted to a different path. We’ve seen the parks working on Fantasmic! for the past few months but it appears that the pace has really picked up.
- Many guests from the parks noticed that more of the major pieces of World of Color have been getting reinstalled which is a good sign that the refurbishment of this popular show is moving in the right direction. World of Color has been actively being worked on ever since Disneyland reopened. Guests staying on-site have also reported they’ve seen cast members testing the fountains after hours which is another positive sign.
- Disney’s California Adventure closes early at 5PM on March 23rd and 24th which has raised speculation that could be because of cast member previews for World of Color. This is a rumor that is based on nothing but guesswork so I wouldn’t put too much stock into this. But so far, there hasn’t been an explanation for the early closing of DCA on those dates.
- This doesn’t necessarily mean anything related to World of Color… this is why rumors should always be treated cautiously as they can often be wrong.
Typically, we will begin hearing rumors of entertainment cast members being called in for rehearsals for a show such as Fantasmic! which can also give us a clue when the return is imminent. So far, I have not heard rumors regarding cast members for Fantasmic! quite yet but that doesn’t mean much at this point. Keep in mind that all of this information is just based on general park operations with some added speculation and it’s not necessarily an indicator of facts.
My Thoughts on the Return of Fantasmic! and World of Color
As always with any speculation and reading rumors, everything should always be taken with a grain of salt and nothing is ever guaranteed. Unfortunately, World of Color especially has been plagued with years of mechanical difficulties which has created a history of lengthy refurbishments. If I was worried about any delay, it would be with World of Color although Disney has been working on it nonstop since the park reopened which gives me confidence that we won’t see any issues. Disney wants these nighttime spectaculars to return as much as we do!
From the evidence we’ve seen of the constant work in the parks for both the return of Fantasmic! and World of Color, I’d say it’s safe to assume we will likely see their return sooner than May. I would imagine that Disneyland is hoping to bring them both back in time for the popular Spring Break season at Disneyland. But do keep in mind the constraints we face now in world shaken by COVID with worker shortages, material issues, etc. it seems that there is a lot that goes beyond our control at times. These difficulties can also impact Disney so it’s also useful to remember that nothing is guaranteed: even if Disney is saying these nighttime shows will return in Spring.
At the very least, I expect we’ll see the return of Fantasmic! and World of Color by the end of May! But it is my guess that Disney is aiming for even sooner as they are clearly working around the clock to get both of these shows up and running.
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