06 April 2010

Disney Host Interactive

Disney Host Interactive
Ryan P. Wilson

Growing up, long before I knew the carefully crafted stories of the attractions, I dreamed up stories of other adventures the characters had when guests weren’t around. In those days, I would have given anything for a set of stories that actually brought this world of ideas to life. I may have had to wait a few extra years into adulthood for stories like this, but Ridley Pearson’s Kingdom Keepers has been well worth the wait.

There is a suspension of disbelief to these stories, as there are not actually any DHIs wandering around the parks (that we are aware of), but isn’t that the point of Walt Disney World? To use our imaginations to uncover what could be possible?

The release of the third installment in the chronicles of the Kingdom Keepers, entitled Disney In Shadow, is happening today, with a signing taking place at Downtown Disney’s Once Upon A Toy. I was lucky enough recently to talk briefly with Ridley about the world of the Kingdom Keepers and the road ahead. For the Gazette’s readers out there, this is required reading before you rush out and pick up your copy today, which I wholeheartedly believe you should.

MSG: Which park have you most enjoyed researching and writing about?
Each park has its own personality. It's a thrill to get backstage and meet Cast Members at each site. Lately I've been hyper-focused on Epcot and Hollywood Studios, so they are both high on my list right now. But ask me again in another year (another book!).

MSG: What one attraction did you look at and immediately know there was a story to be written there?
It would actually be hard to name one that did not strike me that way. But I must say, when I was in Small World, alone (with must my Imagineer guide) with the lights and music shut off, and I saw a doll move (the Imagineer says "that can't happen," but what does he know?) it immediately struck me as a scene in the first book.

MSG: Is there an Imagineer or Cast Member that you have met that you based Wayne upon?
Wayne is a Cast Member who works on Splash Mountain. People who ride that attraction meet him and can't believe it's actually him. But that's where he's hiding from the Overtakers.

MSG: We have met a plethora of Overtakers in the first two books, any chance of the Keepers getting some help from the 'good characters' in Disney in Shadow?
The good characters are on the rise! Stay tuned!

MSG: We've met two Fairlies now in Jez and Amanda. As the series continues are we bound to find more in the parks?
The Fairlies are a story, and a possible series, of their own. Jez (or Jess, as she's sometimes called) and Amanda play increasingly important roles as the series goes on.

MSG: If you had to pick one spot in any park in Walt Disney World to hide the black plastic fob, where would you hide it and why?
First, you have to hide the fob, because it has to be there for you to Return. The Keepers hide it in the park in which they want to return the next time they cross over. In KKIII a mistake is made with the fob that grows costly. A tip: KKIV is centered around the importance of the fob (spoiler alert: for BOTH sides!)

Thank you so much to Ridley Pearson for taking the time to share some of his insights (and hints!) into the world of the Keepers! We can’t wait to see what happens next!

For more information on the Kingdom Keepers and all of Ridley’s other endeavors, be sure to check out The Official Website of Ridley Pearson. As for today’s signing, keep your eyes to the horizon for a report of the event.

No comments: