The Tower of Terror in Tokyo DisneySea features an original storyline and a new exterior design. Mechanically, the Tokyo Tower of Terror is identical to the California and Paris towers with the backwards push at the start of the ride, the “Wave Goodbye” screen, double-decker loading floors and the single-shaft design.
What happened to Harrison Hightower III? The New York Preservation Society has restored his glorious hotel of stolen artifacts and guests retrace his last steps on a tour of the tower – what they encounter instead is a recreation of Hightower’s last moments!
Seated guests are pulled backwards as Hightower’s voice explains the importance of his stolen idol treasure. The elevator shaft darkens, revealing stars and Shiriki Utundu’s glowing green eyes. The elevator begins its ascent.
The elevator doors open, revealing a dusty hallway and a ghostly figure Hightower figure. He approaches the idol on a table, but the idol glows green and sends him screaming and spinning down an elevator shaft at the far end of the hallway. As he plummets, the idol turns its attention towards the elevator passengers and laughs menacingly as the doors shut and the elevator continues its ascent.
When the doors open for the second time, it’s to a very wide mirror reflecting the elevator’s guests. Similar to the DCA and Paris Towers, the reflection is replaced with a glowing green effect as Hightower’s voice tells riders to wave goodbye to the real world. The haunting image fades, and the idol appears in the glass – and suddenly, it strikes! The elevator drops, and the grand finale drop sequence continues from here. Riders are lifted to the top of the shaft for a view of the park through the tower’s broken glass windows, and then the free-falling mania ensues.
As the elevator car returns to the loading/unloading position, Shiriki Utundu glowing green eyes appear again, glaring at guests as they fade away and the service door is illuminated. Guests exit the ride.
Where’s the Twilight Zone?
TV show licensing is a tricky thing – contracts must be agreed upon, payments must be made to the property’s owners. To license the show for Tokyo DisneySea would have required the park’s owners and operators, Oriental Land Company, to pay fees to both Disney and CBS in addition to royalties to CBS. So instead, Disney’s Imagineering team invented a completely new storyline.