Disney closing "Maelstrom" ride at EPCOT, replacing with "Frozen" themed ride

Disney World EPCOT Maelstrom Norway
Posted at 9:17 AM, Sep 29, 2014
and last updated 2014-09-29 05:26:06-04

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (WTXL) --  In a plan met with a "chilly" reaction by some devoted fans, yet great fanfare from others, Walt Disney World announced they are replacing the Maelstrom ride at EPCOT's Norway pavilion with a new Frozen-inspired ride.

"Frozen" has been a mega blockbuster hit for Disney, drawing in millions of dollars in box office and souvenir sales. Disney has also been working quickly to roll out new "Frozen" themed entertainment opportunities and merchandise in their theme parks.

Tom Staggs, Chairman, Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, announced on a company blog that "Maelstrom" will be closing October 5, 2014 to redevelop the pavilion and ride  to answer growing demands from guests for more "Frozen" experiences.

"The new attraction, which replaces Maelstrom, will take our guests to Arendelle and immerse them in many of their favorite moments and music from the film," Staggs said. "The pavilion will also include a royal greeting location where Anna and Elsa can meet our guests. We think these "Frozen" elements are great complements to the Norway Pavilion, which showcases the country and region that inspired the film."

Staggs says "Frozen" characters will also have a larger presence at Magic Kingdom and Disney's Hollywood Studios.

Using #SaveMaelstrom, droves of fans have taken to social media in an attempt to convince Disney otherwise, some even encouraging the country of Norway to get involved - that not is not expected to happen.

VIDEO: A YouTube video of the Maelstrom ride.