FAREWELL GREAT MOVIE RIDE

1989-2017


 

The time has come to say Goodbye to two attractions within Walt Disney World that meant a lot to me. They will be missed but hindsight has been 20/20 of late concerning The Future Of EPCOT and Disney Hollywood Studios. The latter is being emphasized because of the way DHS has gone through more changes due to its theme about Movies and Movie Making.

Back then it was known as Disney MGM Studios in 1989. The park was a celebration of everything that made Hollywood larger than life.

It was a joy to go to when it still had a purpose.There was an actual working animation studio as part of the tour in The Animation Courtyard including The Stage Show Version of The Little Mermaid as well The Indiana Jones Stunt Show way in the back before you hit Star Tours and Muppetvision 3D. The Osborne Lights around Christmas was spectacular too.

Then there's The Great Movie Ride which focused on a lot of classic movie scenes such as Gene Kelly in Singing In The Rain, Julie Andrews in Mary Poppins and Judy Garland in The Wizard Of Oz using animatronics. Halfway through the tour the vehicle we were in was hijacked by actors dressed as cowboys or gangsters. That made for some exciting fun. The topper showed a big screen that had clips from various movies. Overall it was a good time for everyone who rode it.

Over time however less people came and some felt they could've switched out some of the clips at the end. It stopped being an amazing ride after Disney in an attempt to revitalize it teamed with Turner Classic Movies to overhaul it by adding narration by The Late Robert Osborne leaving The Cast Members driving the vehicles with very little to do.

That killed the thrill of it for me.

Since MGM Studios let their lease run out a few years before and the contracts from other studios couldn't be renegoiated Disney had to rely on more of their own In House intellectual properies to carry the bulk of the concept of showing how films were made.

With the advent of being able to buy films on DVD, Youtube and being so jaded by The Entertainment Industry that you wind up doing it yourself, It became very clear that there's a segment of that park goer who would rather be part of the action than know how the action is done.

For all they care to know The Fairies magically made everything in Disney Hollywood Studios. The charm of The Hollywood That Never Was is lost on anybody who didn't live through it.

As things go nothing last forever. Change for better or worse is inevitable and any thought of persuading Disney to keep it alive out of Nostalgia or overhauling it again wastes time and money better spent elsewhere. That is their perogative and their credo as a business.

It was a good run and I'll always remember it.

In a way I'm kind of sad but as Walt himself cited you shouldn't look back too long and to keep moving forward.

And that's what I intend to do.