Rock 'n' Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith

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This article is about Rock 'n' Roller Coaster at Disney's Hollywood Studios and Walt Disney Studios Park. For the Opryland ride, see Rock n' Roller Coaster (Opryland).
Rock 'n' Roller Coaster
Rock'n'RollerCoaster Logo.jpg
Rockin outside.JPG
A giant red Fender Stratocaster greets Aerosmith enthusiasts outside the ride at Disney's Hollywood Studios at the Walt Disney World Resort.
Disney's Hollywood Studios
Coordinates 28°21′33.9″N 81°33′38.5″W / 28.359417°N 81.560694°W / 28.359417; -81.560694
Status Operating
Opening date July 29, 1999 (1999-07-29)
Walt Disney Studios Park
Coordinates 48°51′53″N 2°46′48″E / 48.864850°N 2.779931°E / 48.864850; 2.779931Coordinates: 48°51′53″N 2°46′48″E / 48.864850°N 2.779931°E / 48.864850; 2.779931
Status Operating
Opening date March 16, 2002 (2002-03-16)
General statistics
Type Steel – Enclosed – Launched
Manufacturer Vekoma
Designer Walt Disney Imagineering
Model LSM Coaster
Lift/launch system LSM launch with catch car
Height 80 ft (24 m)
Length 3,403 ft (1,037 m)
Speed 57 mph (92 km/h)
Inversions 3
Duration 1:22 (Pre-show is 3:12)
Capacity 1800 riders per hour
Acceleration 0 to 57 mph (0 to 92 km/h) in 2.8 seconds
G-force 5Gs during launch, 4.5 during loop
Height restriction 48 in (122 cm)
Trains 5 (max. 4 in operation) trains with 6 cars. Riders are arranged 2 across in 2 rows for a total of 24 riders per train.
Single rider line available at Disney's Hollywood Studios
Rock 'n' Roller Coaster at RCDB
Pictures of Rock 'n' Roller Coaster at RCDB

Rock 'n' Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith (commonly referred to as simply Rock 'n' Roller Coaster) is an enclosed steel roller coaster ride at Disney's Hollywood Studios at the Walt Disney World Resort and at the Walt Disney Studios Park in Disneyland Paris. The Florida attraction opened on July 29, 1999 and is located at the end of Sunset Boulevard, next to The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror attraction. The Paris attraction opened on March 16, 2002 in the Backlot section of the park; it is currently the fastest roller coaster in France.[1]

The coaster accelerates from 0 to 57 miles per hour in 2.8 seconds (making this the second-fastest attraction at the Walt Disney World Resort, behind only Test Track and the fastest ride at Disneyland Paris). The riders experience 4.5 G (44 m/s2) as they enter the first inversion, more than an astronaut does on a space shuttle launch. Both versions of the attraction feature five trains, although only four can run at one time. The remaining train is kept in backup while being serviced (each train is rotated out periodically for safety reasons).

Disney's Hollywood Studios attraction[edit]

After winding through a shaded outdoor queue, guests enter the offices and recording studios of record label G-Force Records (a 68,131 sq ft (6,329.6 m2) building), whose lobby is decorated with posters of real artists signed to Disney Music Group labels.

Next, guests are led into a room looking into the recording studio, where the five members of the hit band Aerosmith are shown finishing a recording session with a recording engineer played by Ken Marino. The group's manager, portrayed by Illeana Douglas, enters and informs them that they are late for a concert.[2] Lead singer Steven Tyler expresses regret at being forced to leave the band's fans and requests backstage passes for the entire group. The band then departs by limousine to "the Forum" (a reference to a famous Los Angeles concert venue). The harried manager summons a "super stretch" limo, to carry guests to the concert and directs them outside.

Guests exit the recording studio and pass through an alley into a parking garage, owned by "Lock 'n' Roll Parking Systems". In here, guests waiting in line can see the ride's launch and sharp-eyed guests can spot the curtains in above 'apartment windows', sway from the 'force', caused by the launch. Guests then board a waiting 24 seat stretch limo for the trip across town to the concert.

After loading passengers, the "limo" stops at the entrance to a tunnel. Music is playing and an overhead variable message sign displays a series of several different messages until a countdown. After the countdown, the car is then shot into the tunnel at 57 miles per hour (92 km/h) and the souvenir photo is taken. The roller coaster goes through three inversions, one of which is a Sea Serpent Roll (Vekoma, Roll Over), (half loop, half corkscrew, half corkscrew, half loop) and one of which is a corkscrew on a winding track, intended to represent various Los Angeles Area Freeways, including Interstate 5, Interstate 10 and U.S. Route 101, as evident by the street signs that periodically appear on the side of the coaster. The attraction ends when the limo arrives at Aerosmith's concert backstage, letting guests off onto a red carpet.

While considered "extreme", Rock 'n' Roller Coaster has been described by roller coaster enthusiasts as being smoother, less jerkier and less uncomfortable than some similar extreme roller coasters.

As of July 2008, Hanes is the attraction's presenting sponsor.[3]

History[edit]

Cast member previews for the ride were initially held the last week of June, 1999. On 29 July 1999, the ride officially opened with a special, invitation-only party, with Aerosmith as the guests of honor. Winners rode to Disney's Hollywood Studios in stretch limousines and were treated to an all-you-can-eat buffet and bar. After a special performance by painter Denny Dent, winners got the chance to ride the roller coaster with one of the Aerosmith band members. At the exit of the ride, outside of the gift shop, there hangs a picture from the special event. The paintings Denny Dent made of the five band members hang in various employee office locations on Walt Disney World property.

The pre-show has changed from when the attraction first opened. Currently, band member Joe Perry would ask "Chris" to "grab my black Les Paul." A Disney cast member in the pre-show area would then pick up and remove a black guitar signed by Joe Perry from the set. The script uses the unisex name "Chris" so either a male or female could play the part. Although not used as often as when the ride first opened, the position is still used from time to time (generally, if the attraction is overstaffed). The film also includes a roadie saying "Hey Joe, I'll get it for ya" as a backup, in the event that a cast member is not available for the part.

In 2007, the queue was modified to accommodate single riders in addition to FASTPASS.

Queue[edit]

Guests begin the queue by entering through a small and narrow tent, with boxes designed like instrument cases decorating the scene. The guests then wait in an unshaded, gridded-queue area (if the queue is long), and then proceed to a ramp that takes them back and forth, to curve around the front of the building, behind the giant electric guitar, and into the "G-Force Records" recording studio. Guests then enter a circular room with a high ceiling decorated with a giant record. Guests can see posters for bands or artists Disney has signed, along with other miscellaneous and famous bands/singers. These posters are displayed via LCD scene and are changed daily. Guests then continue immediately to enter a small room with doors covered in marbles and a small exhibit of recording instruments. Guests can interact with the marble doors and often do, and if they take the time to look at the exhibit, they will see various funny parts (i.e. the person who organized and presented the exhibit is named Mike Rofone). Guests are then called by a Cast Member to join other guests (this is where the Fastpass + line and Stand-by lines merge) to enter the studio that Aerosmith is recording in. Guests wait for the recording to stop, and the automatic doors eventually open. As guests enter, the song "Walk this Way" plays, except, after the introduction is played, the drums, vocals, and guitar cuts out, leaving only the baseline (the guitar occasionally comes back in). Guests see Aerosmith recording and wait momentarily, until they the band is interrupted by their manager. The manager tells the band that they have a show to get to, and they can't stay with the guests any longer. Steven Tyler expresses discontent with this outcome and suggests to his manager to get the guests to their concert, along with backstage passes. The manager reluctantly accepts, after a few seconds of persuasion. After she accepts to give the ride and tickets to the show, the guests see her call her assistant "Sal", who she tells to get a "stretch" limo. After a few seconds of thinking, she takes it back and instead asks for a "super stretch". She then tells the guests that she has gotten a "really fast car" for them to ride to the concert because the show is all the way across town. We then see the limo with the band in it already peel out of the lot, leaving the manager behind. The automatic doors open to the outdoor parking garage, where guests will be boarding their limos. As the doors open, the audio for "Walk This Way" plays as guests exit. Guests walk along a fence that separates them from the limos. Immediately after entering the garage, guests see the limos that are ready to be launched off from 0 to 58 MPH in 2.8 seconds. As cars launch off, guests hear echoed and intense screaming, and extra added sound effects, which can scare guests and get guests nervous. Guests proceed from here through a short line to board their limo.

Ride[edit]

Guests board their limo car, which lies low on the ground. They stow their small belongings either on the floor or in the small pouch in front of them. Guests pull down their full shoulder restraints, and lift up on them when the Cast Member tells them to complete the safety check. Cars seat two people per row. After the safety check is done and the car ahead of them has finished the launch, the car proceeds around the corner to view a tunnel and a sign above it, designed to look like a highway sign.As they're moving and waiting, they hear a brief message from the radio DJ, talking about how jammed the freeways are. The highway sign flashes funny messages like: "Traffic bug you? Then STEP on it!" Guests wait for the car ahead of them to finish the ride, and eventually they hear an introduction (varies, can be "We're only just getting started!" or "Rock 'n' Roller Coaster", (said in a deep, growling voice)). After this introduction, Stephen Tyler alternates between each ear the countdown of "5,...4,...3,...2,...1,...!", as they hear the introduction of the song they're about to hear. After Stephen reaches between the numbers 1 and 2 from his countdown, guests being to accelerate from 0 to 58 MPH in less than 2.8 seconds. It is in this initial second that the camera takes the photo of the guests. After a long straightway, the car proceeds to do an inversion, and then some less intense maneuvers. The whole ride, there are neon signs on the side of the track, designed to mimic road signs. These signs have messages like "Corkscrew ahead!" The car continues along the not-so-intense track, until it reaches the second inversion (which is a corkscrew). Finally, guests perform a humpback as they enter the VIP parking for the concert. Guests wait in a tunnel at a stop for a moment, then proceed to the VIP backstage area, where they're greeted by a red carpet and their ride photos. Guests then exit through the gift shop.

Soundtrack[edit]

The giant red Fender Stratocaster outside of the Disney Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster at night
The garage sign in the ride's load area

There are five speakers per seat, a total of 120 per limo. Aerosmith worked with Disney Imagineers to produce a special soundtrack for the roller coaster. Each coaster train features different Aerosmith songs.

Note: There is a 6th Limo in the fleet of ride vehicles of Rock'n'Roller Coaster. This vehicle is without a license plate, and is always "in refurbishment." The vehicles are rotated in and out of use after a period of many thousands of laps around the track. However, the maintenance teams will switch out the plate and add the proper song to the new vehicle every time a rotation is made.

The ride formerly featured Uncle Joe Benson, a well-known Los Angeles, CA rock radio DJ, as the station's DJ. Currently, Bill Hart (known as Bill St. James), the host of ABC Radio's "Flashback", provides the voice for the DJ of "LA's Classic Rock Station".

The height requirement on this ride is 48" or 4'0".

Walt Disney Studios Park attraction[edit]

Rock 'n' Roller Coaster also exists in Disneyland Paris' Walt Disney Studios Park, named "Rock 'n' Roller Coaster avec Aerosmith".

Although the track layout is identical to its Orlando counterpart, the theme of the ride differs—instead of guests being taken on the Los Angeles freeways, the Paris version is based around an Aerosmith music video. Lighting rigs, projectors, strobes, and smoke effects are used in place of the road signs that exist in the U.S. version. The name of the record company is Tour de Force (instead of "G-Force") Records, and the vehicles in Paris are called "Soundtrackers" instead of limousines.

The story of the Paris version is that Aerosmith, working with engineers, have created a revolutionary new music experience at the Tour De Force Records studios. After watching the pre-show which features Aerosmith's Steven Tyler hyping up the ride, guests are lured into the testing area where they board the prototype vehicle for the new experience, the Soundtracker.

A unique aspect of the Walt Disney Studios version is that each Soundtracker has its own theme. There are five different lightshows and five different soundtracks, one for each Soundtracker. The themes are as follows:

  • Soundtracker 1: green lightshow theme; plays "Back In The Saddle" and "Dude Looks Like A Lady".
  • Soundtracker 2: purple lightshow theme; plays "Young Lust", "F.I.N.E." and "Love In An Elevator".
  • Soundtracker 3: multicolour lightshow theme; plays "Love In An Elevator" and "Walk This Way".
  • Soundtracker 4: red/yellow lightshow theme; plays "Nine Lives".
  • Soundtracker 5: blue lightshow theme; plays "Sweet Emotion (live)".

Hidden Mickeys[edit]

Main article: Hidden Mickey
  • One in the pre-show (found on a small chalkboard in the bottom right corner of the sound room (this one was made by a cast member and changes at times)
  • One in the pre-show (found on the ground, formed by three coils of wire).
  • One in place of each "Expiration Date" for the license plates on the limos.
  • Many on the floor in Studio C, hidden in the carpet pattern.
  • Two on the ride track itself (one found on a yellow sign behind a red limo, one on the ground in a cityscape area).
  • Two in the tile mosaic in the rotunda before the recording studio near the marble doors.
  • One in the post show area to the right as one enters this area.
  • Many on Steven Tyler's shirt on the poster outside.
  • One on Joe Perry's medallion on the outside poster.

Additional versions[edit]

In 2000, Vekoma constructed a nearly identical version of Rock 'n' Roller Coaster for Walibi Holland in the Netherlands. Initially called Superman The Ride, the ride was renamed Xpress: Platform 13 in 2005.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Record Holders". rcdb.com. Duane Marden. Retrieved 1 August 2014. 
  2. ^ "Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith with Illeana Douglas". Disney D23. 4 August 2011. Retrieved 27 May 2013. 
  3. ^ Matt Palm (2008-07-16). "Dude Looks Like a Lady (depending on his underwear)". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved 2008-07-16. 

External links[edit]