- “We are committed to creating experiences which honor both Disney heritage and appeal to our Chinese Guests. With a combination of new cutting-edge technology and innovation, Pirates of the Caribbean: Battle of the Sunken Treasure will take our Guests at Shanghai Disney Resort on a first-of-its-kind pirate adventure you will never experience anywhere else in the world.”
- ―Mike Crawford, General Manager of Shanghai Disney Resort
Pirates of the Caribbean: Battle for the Sunken Treasure is an attraction opened at Shanghai Disneyland by June 16, 2016. Based on the Pirates of the Caribbean film series, themselves based on the original Disneyland ride of the same name, the attraction is located in "Treasure Cove", the first Pirates-themed land of any Disney Park.
Guests begin their journey by entering Fort Snobbish. Once a base for the Royal Navy, it is now a hiding place for Jack Sparrow. Boarding the boats, guests pass a forboding talking skull and a dining area for the Barbossa's Bounty restaurant before entering the Caves of Misfortune.
The Caves of Misfortune serves as a counterpart to the skeleton-laden caverns of Dead Man's Cove in the original attraction. Skeletal vignettes include a meeting of pirate captains, a captain stabbing a crewmate, and a skeletal version of the original attraction's Jail scene, complete with dog. As you pass by these foreboding scenes, Jack can be heard asking if you're up for adventure and the boats pass by a skeleton at the helm of a shipwreck. With a flash of lightning, the skeleton transforms into Jack Sparrow, who plans to steal Davy Jones's sunken treasure and sends us off.
As we dive underwater, we enter a Graveyard of Lost Ships, moving past sharks, shipwrecks and the Kraken, where cursed pirates roam the sea floor. Passing through the hull of one of these broken ships, we pass through a coral reef, encounter mermaids and battling crabs, and two cursed pirates that have been put into stocks for trying to steal some of Davy Jones's treasure. Amongst the glittering gold are relics from all throughout human history and the Cursed Aztec Chest from Curse of the Black Pearl. As we move closer to the Flying Dutchman, Maccus ambushes us and sends us inside. Here, Davy Jones can be seen playing his pipe organ with the Kraken appearing in the windows. He abruptly stops playing as we approach and decides to attack Jack Sparrow for this attempt at stealing from him.
Leaving the Flying Dutchman, we see the shipwrecks rising from their watery tombs for a great battle, with Jack Sparrow already on the scene in his ship. The Dutchman rises and turns to attack the Pearl and the battle begins. Passing under the cannons, we enter the damaged Pearl and Davy Jones pursues. A sword duel between Jack Sparrow and Davy Jones ensues, which Jack ends by blasting a cannon into one of the walls, flooding the room and washing everybody out. As we arrive back at Fort Snobbish, Jack has recovered the treasure. Two alternate endings play-out here: Either Davy Jones turns the gold into rusted and seaweed covered junk to spite Jack or Davy Jones lets Jack keep it, which prompts Jack to sing "Yo Ho (A Pirate's Life for Me)" before we unload.
Behind the scenes
The attraction was announced on March 18, 2014, 47 years after the grand opening of the original Pirates of the Caribbean attraction. As part of The Walt Disney Company Annual Meeting of Shareholders, Disney Chairman and CEO Bob Iger unveiled creative details including the first-ever Pirates-themed land and the attraction, both designed for the Shanghai Disney Resort. It was confirmed on the next day that the attraction is happening and will open by June 16, 2016.
Seamlessly blending Disney's storytelling and state-of-the-art technologies, Pirates of the Caribbean: Battle of the Sunken Treasure will be the second attraction built since the release of the Pirates films (the first being The Legend of Captain Jack Sparrow), and the first to heavily feature the characters and scenes derived directly from the movies. Employing many never-before-seen effects and technologies, guests will be enlisted to go with Captain Jack Sparrow on an epic journey to find Captain Davy Jones' treasure. The ride will take Guests down to the ocean depths, through the bellies of pirate ships, and straight into the heart of a ferocious naval battle, all the while braving the nautical twists, spins and turns of a pirate adventure.
Tributes and Easter-Eggs
The attraction contains many allusions to the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise and Disney in general.
- Fort Snobbish has a wall of mounted horseshoes with the names of their respective horses written underneath. The names of these horses all belong to horses (and characters transformed into horses) from Disney properties. This includes: Jaq, Gus, Maximus, Bullseye, Major, Old Dobbin, Achilles, Frou-Frou, Khan, Horace, Philippe, Angus, Abu, Captain and Spot.
- A sign for the Fort's map room identifies the cartographer as one K. Anderson, a reference to Disney Imagineer Ken Anderson.
- One shelf in Jack Sparrow's quarters contains the Dead Man's Chest.
- One of the wanted posters seen in the queue is for Edward Teach AKA Blackbeard, the original captain of The Wicked Wench from the ride and villain of the fourth pirates film.
- The talking skull is given the name of Captain X, this being a tribute to late-imagineer Xavier "X" Atencio who wrote the script for the original ride, wrote the lyrics for Yo Ho (A Pirate's Life for Me), and voiced the skull in the original attraction.
- Many elements from the original rides' structures and narrative are recycled in this attraction. Riders go through Fort Snobbish rather than Castillo del Morro, past the waters of Barbossa's Bounty rather than the Blue Lagoon, the caverns replace Dead Man's Cove, Davy Jones' Locker replaces the treasure room and the gunfight between the Black Pearl and Flying Dutchman replaces the Wicked Wench attacking Puerto Dorado.
- The skeleton council in the caverns are modelled after the Brethren Court from the third pirates' film.
- Several skeletons in the caverns homage characters from the original ride. The stabbing pirate represents the Pillager, the prisoners and dog are the prisoners and dog from Castillo del Morro, and Jack Sparrow's skeleton resembles the skeleton helmsman.
- As the guests exit the bottom of the sea, Davy Jones can be heard playing Toccata and Fugue in B minor on his pipe-organ. While this melody is very common to be played by monsters and villains on pipe-organs in film and television, in the context of the ride it was famously played by Captain Nemo aboard the underwater Nautilus in 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. In Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, Davy Jones' pipe-organ aboard the Dutchman was already an homage to the film.
- Jack filling his dinghy with treasure and blasting his own ship to make away with it while leaving his crew to die is a recycled gag from the original Pirates of the Caribbean made by Marc Davis which went unused.
- "Disneyland Shanghai to open 2016".
- Shanghai Disneyland's Treasure Cove Unveiled « Disney Parks Blog
- Shanghai Disneyland's Treasure Cove Unveiled | Official Disney Blog
- D23.com | See Concept Art From Shanghai Disneyland's Treasure Cove
- Pirates of the Caribbean Coming to Shanghai Disneyland | Shanghai Disney Resort