Olszewski Disneyland miniatures - May 5, 2012

Olszewski Studios product release day! I got to the Disneyland turnstiles a little later than usual this morning, around 7:45am, and I was disoriented for a minute. I knew it was a Magic Morning day, so I had expected most of the gates to be open, but only for those with Magic Morning privileges, and other guests would be lined up at the closed gates, waiting for the 8am opening time. Well, all the gates were open, but there were no lines anywhere. Curious. When I looked at the signs above the gates, the two on the far right said "Magic Morning", but the rest all just said "Entrance". Odd. I guess they decided to open the turnstiles to regular guests early, and presumably, only Magic Morning guests could go past the end of Main Street before 8am. I went through and joined the line at Disneyana.

The line to get into Disneyana to purchase the Nautilus wasn't terribly long when I'd joined it, so once the first guest was allowed in, I was surprised at how slowly the line moved. Once we actually made it inside, we figured out exactly why the line was so slow.

Normally, on Olszewski product release days, there are 3 or 4 registers open, you make your purchase, and if you're getting a pre-signed piece, then you move to the back room where the pieces are already unboxed and out. You pick one, inspect it to make sure it's ok, and then they have a plug or batteries (depending on what kind of power the release product needs) available so that you can test your piece to make sure it works properly. If everything is good, they then re-box the piece for you, and voila, you're done.

There were only 2 registers open today, the main registers in the very front. OK, maybe they didn't expect as many people to come today since the release was for an attraction vehicle that was actually from Walt Disney World. We saw that many of the Nautilus pieces had been unboxed and were sitting out in the back room, so we were expecting to go there next. Curious that there weren't already other collectors there getting their pieces, because they usually let enough people in so that the registers and the inspection/boxing stations were all busy.

We were making purchases for other people as well, so I told the cast member that we needed three of the Nautilus. She said she couldn't sell me three pieces. I pointed at the husband, who had walked up with me and was standing right next to me, and said there were two of us. She said she could only sell two pieces per customer. So I suggested that she could ring us up separately, two for the husband and one for me. And the CM seemed to think that was a dandy idea. Really? She couldn't have figured that out herself and even offered it as a suggestion? In the past, when we've needed 3 of a particular piece, we've always started off the transaction with saying that the husband needs 2 and I need 1. The CMs have usually then allowed us to make one purchase transaction as long as we both showed our APs, to make sure we were allowed to have the AP discount for all 3 pieces. I completely get if they need to do two separate transactions, but it seems ridiculous for the CM to just stand there and tell me she can't give me what I've asked for, and then to need ME to offer the obvious solution to the "problem".

OK, fine, purchases made. And then they just handed us our purchases right there. So we don't get to inspect our merchandise and verify that they're in proper working order, like we normally do? That entire set-up in the back room was solely for the people getting their pieces hand-signed by Bob Olszewski? The person at the register next to us asked to look through her merchandise before leaving with it. We decided to just take our purchase outside to inspect them, figuring we could come back inside if we needed to. Everything looked ok but we weren't able to test out the pieces - we'll have to remember to bring our own batteries next time. But the lack of a separate product inspection station was precisely why the line was taking so long, because people were spending more time than normal at the cash register inspecting their merchandise, not just making their purchases. I'm hoping that they did it this way just for this event because they didn't expect as many people as normal and so didn't want to have the regular number of CMs working this release event. Repeating this way of handling purchases and product inspection for a regular Olszewski release event would result in a very long delay for collectors.


OK, on to news. The next scheduled Olszewski Studios release at Disneyland will be the fifth and last set of the Main Street Electrical Parade, but the previously anticipated July release has been pushed back to August or September. Development of the Storybookland piece is continuing, including deciding which boats in the attraction will actually be represented in the piece.

A prototype of King Arthur Carrousel was on hand, and it's a gorgeous piece, even in this early stage. The piece will ultimately include 68 horses and the bench, like on the ride, so the Olszewski piece will be ADA compliant, just like the attraction itself. Olszewski Studios is working with others to determine which horses other than Jingles will be on the outer ring of the ride (since those will be the most visible/recognizable on the piece), and to make sure that as many of the 16 different styles of horses from the attraction are represented in the piece.


King Arthur Carrousel in the Disneyland Fantasyland platform.


Another view of King Arthur Carrousel in the Fantasyland platform.


Side view of King Arthur Carrousel in the Fantasyland platform.


King Arthur Carrousel with the "Sword in the Stone" section,
with sword still to be added.


Different view of the "Sword in the Stone" section.


One of the exit gates and a view of the horses.


The entrance area to King Arthur Carrousel.


Queue area and cast member control panel.


Side view of the cast member control panel.


The Matterhorn is still a possibility for 2014, which would be the 55th anniversary of the Matterhorn in Disneyland park. The Alpine chalet, formerly used as part of the Skyway, is also a possibility for 2014.


As mentioned in a recent email from Olszewski Studios, the Fantasyland platform will be available in two different versions, the full platform for $395 or the 3/4 back part of the platform (which doesn't include the 1/4 front piece) for $345. Some collectors have indicated that they definitely plan to connect Fantasyland directly to the Main Street platform so don't need the front 1/4 section, which is why Olszewski Studios is offering the 3/4 version of the Fantasyland platform. However, if you're planning to buy the 3/4 version, be absolutely and completely sure that you're NEVER going to want or need to display the Fantasyland platform separately from the Main Street platform. Olszewski Studios is not going to offer the 1/4 section for sale separately, so if your plans or living arrangements change in the future, and you find yourself in need of the front Fantasyland section after all, you're either going to have to buy the full Fantasyland platform at that time just to get the 1/4 section or you're going to have to find someone who only wants the 3/4 section and arrange to split the platform with them.


This picture of the Disneyland Fantasyland platform shows where the break is
between the front section and the back section. The arch of trees to the left of Elliot covers
the connector between the front 1/4 section and the back 3/4 section of the platform.


The lighting kit for the Fantasyland platform will also be available in two separate sections, one for the front 1/4 portion and one for the back 3/4 portion.


American Plastics Corporation in Camarillo is still making plexiglass covers for the Main Street platform. The current cost is $375, and the covers cannot be shipped but instead must be picked up. They can be reached at (805) 484-3333. Olszewski Studios will be providing the specs of the full and 3/4 Fantasyland platform to American Plastics, and they will be making covers for those as well. More information will be forthcoming as it becomes available.


The Disneyland Main Street platform is expected to have another run produced shortly. An announcement for orders is expected in May with the platforms being ready for pickup or delivery in September.


As mentioned in a previous update, Olszewski Studios will be releasing a series of accessory packs that include both characters and vehicles. The first of these packs is planned for Christmas 2012.

Also as noted in a prior update, Olszewski Studios will be releasing a seasonal accessory pack for Main Street. The pack will include street overhangs, banners for the street lamps, bunting for the buildings and the front gate/turnstiles, with separate sets for each of the holidays of Fourth of July, Halloween and Christmas. Note that the Halloween pumpkin which sits in the same place as the Christmas tree in Town Square will not be included in this pack but will instead be included in a regular accessory pack. The seasonal accessory pack is also planned for a Christmas 2012 release.

Speaking of accessory packs, wouldn't it be cool if one of the packs included some of the construction walls that you see at Disneyland when something is being worked on? I can't be the only one who'd want a set of those. After all, *our* attractions and stores need to go into refurbishment periodically as well.


Quick update for the WDW Main Street collection - the release of Ice Cream Corner has been pushed back to September, and the release of Casey's Corner has been pushed to March 2013. Both pieces had previously been scheduled for release this summer, but delays have arisen, and they didn't want to release both pieces at the same time because the cost of purchasing both pieces at the same time could prove burdensome for collectors.


In the Gallery of Light series, the release of Fireside Romance from "Beauty and the Beast" and the Evil Queen in the mirror from "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs" have both been moved to October. A second Gallery of Light featuring Walt Disney's Enchanted Tiki Room is planned for the 55th anniversary of the attraction in 2013, and this one will focus more on the birds in the attraction. The first Tiki Room Gallery of Light was a limited edition and has sold out.


In the pokitpal series, the release of Ariel, Ursula, Goofy, Cheshire Cat and Captain Hook is expected in June or July. As noted in a prior update, pokitpals for the Millenium Falcon, Yoda, R2-D2/C-3PO and Boba Fett/Jango Fett will be released at Walt Disney World in conjunction with Star Wars Weekends.


Front of the Ariel pokitpal.


Back of the Ariel pokitpal.


Side of the Ariel pokitpal.


Front of the Ursula pokitpal.


Back of the Ursula pokitpal.


One side of the Ursula pokitpal.


Another side of the Ursula pokitpal.


Front of the Goofy pokitpal.


Back of the Goofy pokitpal.


Side of the Goofy pokitpal.


Another side of the Goofy pokitpal.


Front of the Cheshire Cat pokitpal.


Back of the Cheshire Cat pokitpal.


Side of the Cheshire Cat pokitpal.


Another side of the Cheshire Cat pokitpal.


R2-D2 is on one side of the pokitpal.


And C-3PO is on the side of the pokitpal.


One side of the R2/3PO pokitpal.


Another side of the R2/3PO pokitpal.


The bottom of the R2/3PO pokitpal.


The top of the R2/3PO pokitpal.
I *love* that this scene is here!


In celebration of the opening of Carsland at Disney California Adventure on June 15, Olszewski Studios is working on products that include backgrounds of Radiator Springs. Collectors of a particularly popular line of "Cars" merchandise will be very happy about this new product, and it might even make collectors of those of us who aren't currently. This new product line is expected to launch later in the year.


Olszewski Studios will be at the Disneyana Show and Sale on July 22 at the Crowne Plaza in Garden Grove. They're expecting to have at least a version of the final set of the Electrical Parade floats available for collectors to preview. See you there!



Oh, and since I didn't get a chance to say hello to Bob Olszewski at this release (by the time I tried to see him, they had already cut the line off - I'll have to remember to go earlier next time), here's wishing a very happy belated birthday to Bob. And because I completely forgot to say it in person, happy birthday to Travis.





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