Change is good, right? Usually it means progress and improvement. I usually embrace change pretty well but right now and for the yet undetermined future there is some change taking place that has me rather unsettled, melancholy, sad even. The change I am talking about is the change happening at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Back in April when I wrote Top 10 Must-Dos for Your First Visit to Disney’s Hollywood Studios, I talked about the beginnings of the changes that were coming. The iconic hat has been removed, The Studio Backlot Tour, The Legend of Captain Jack Sparrow, and The American Idol Experience are closed. Disney fans have known for a while that this park will be changing, undergoing a re-theming, receiving a new name and I’m sure, it will be wonderful when it is done, but what about in the meantime?
Saying Goodbye to The Magic of Disney Animation
Yesterday, July 12, 2015 The Magic of Disney Animation closed its doors. Last week I took a trip to the Studios to say “good-bye” to one of the last bastions of the original Disney MGM Studios. While it no longer was filled with real animators working on actual Disney films like it was in its heyday, we still learned about animated characters in a 9 minute movie starring my friend Mushu. You could also learn to draw Disney characters in the Animation Academy. I had planned to take my nephew to a class at the Animation Academy on our visit last week. Unfortunately, since word got out of this building’s closing the line for the Animation Academy has been crazy long. As much as I wanted to draw one last Disney character, I wasn’t willing to wait 2 hours in line to do that. It is my hope that these roots of the original park are not lost in the name of progress. I hope the Animation Academy and the wonderful character meet and greet areas find new homes.
Other Closing Rumors
While I haven’t seen any official Disney announcement yet on other closures, the rumor mill is full of them. I am in agreement with most Disney fans that we will get some more concrete answers next month at D23 in Anaheim. Other rumored closures in this park include:
- MuppetVision 3D (we need more Muppets not less)
- Indiana Jones Stunt Spectacular
- Voyage of the Little Mermaid (at least Ariel is alive and well in New Fantasyland)
- One Man’s Dream (NOOOO! We love this piece of Disney history)
- Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show
- Honey, I Shrunk the Kids: Movie Set Adventure (this has been outdated for years)
Rumors of Things to Come to Disney’s Hollywood Studios
We know that more Star Wars and Pixar are coming. I am not a Star Wars fan but I do admit that there are a lot of Star Wars obsessed fans out there. I am excited for some new Pixar offerings. I know we won’t be getting Radiator Springs Racers but I can’t wait to see what is coming down the pike. Other rumors include an updated east coast version of the Indian Jones ride that is out in California.
We also know it is getting a new name. The most rumored name is Disney’s Hollywood Adventure, I guess we will have to wait and see.
Disney’s Hollywood Studios in the Meantime
As closures continue, eventually leaving only Rock ‘n Roller Coaster, Tower of Terror, Star Tours, Toy Story Midway Mania and The Great Movie Ride open, this park will become a half-day park for mostly thrill seekers. Assuming For the First Time in Forever-A Frozen Sing-along and Beauty and the Beast stay open for a while, I will have something to do while my thrill seekers ride their rides.
Disney will also have to restructure their FastPass+ system in this park because most of the remaining attractions are tier one FastPass+ attractions. Some of my friends and I have discussed if there is any wisdom in just closing this park for a year or two and fast-tracking some of the new development to get things moving forward faster. What do you think?
In the end, I know that eventually whatever this park is called it will be awesome because Disney always does a great job. In the meantime though, I suggest you always get the parkhopper option on your Magic Your Way Tickets because soon there will be no need to spend all day here.
Let me help you plan your next Disney Vacation.