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Monday, July 18, 2011

elements of a story . . .

there is a beginning,
a middle,
and the end
(or as theme parks go - 'the present')

In the beginning, Disney Hollywood Studios was known as MGM Studios.
It wasn't about the rides but about the art and the show.
Eventually they would add some star-attraction rides:
Tower of Terror, Rock-N-Roll Roller-coaster, Star Tours, etc.,
but the focus was mainly on the shows.

Somewhere in the middle, they felt the need to 'change-it-up'
and got rid of, or modified (a/k/a shortened) certain shows
(Hunchback of Notre-Dame, Little Mermaid, and Fantasmic).

If you weren't there for the beginning of this story, you would have no idea
that at one time, instead of the loud car show
there was the Hunchback of Notre-Dame.
A brilliantly performed production that made Beauty & The Beast look like, well, less.
You would have no memory of the pre-show performances -
from jugglers to comedians to singers.
You would not know that in lieu of the vast video-clip inserts in Little Mermaid,
there was actual live performance.
In short - you would have no idea of when you used to get more bang for the buck.

And that brings us to the end / or the present.
Where the Little Mermaid still packs an audience every showing,
and Fantasmic remains a family favorite.

[this is on water - very cool effect]

[always thought these were random -
believe it used to include marionettes of Pinocchio which transitioned better into the Fantasia story]

and from goodie two shoes
Resident Evil!

to Mickey coming to his senses
and braving snakes, witches, and dragons
as well as flames and fountains

to save the day . . .

and exit the theater
happily ever after.

*Tip for Fantasmic: if you do not have young children - wait and see the 2nd showing, more seats, fewer strollers to run you over on the way in or way out. Also - if you have a good camera lens, sit up a little higher and slightly left or right of center to capture the mixture of water art and stage performance.


  1. Boy, I can see that I missed a lot of stuff when we were there, but my "excuse" is that 90% of the time I was helping ride herd on the 3 grands--an exhausting way to do DW, albeit fun. GREAT shots of the Fantasmic show! I love that one of Ursula--very effective on the water. I miss the old MGM, too. I remember touring the Animation studios when they were working on "The Lion King" and we could watch the animators and artists working on the cels. Very very cool. I think the park is less than it was with the emphasis on rides, but that is what brings in the moola which is Disney's bottom line...

  2. I, too, missed much while there, and don't even have grands to blame it on! I THOUGHT I remembered MGM aka Hollywood Studios having so much more by way of performances! I miss those days! You did a great job getting these shots, especially of Fantasmic! What kind of lens were you using?

  3. Angela - I was using a 70-300 VR - it does surprisingly well even in low light (which actually isn't low light because it is directed to a lit subject).

  4. Looks like so much fun! The colors in these shots are gorgeous. Makes me want to go to Disney!

  5. We went to Disney in May. We didn't make it to Disney Hollywood Studios on this trip. However, every time we would pass by the Tower of Terror my four year old daughter would point and excitedly scream... "It's the Tower of Terrorists! Look! The Tower of Terrorists!"

  6. Renee - I am quite literally LOLing. Sounds exactly like something my daughter might have yelled at that age.

  7. Tower of Terrorists :) That made me laugh too! Nicki, your pictures were great, especially the ones of images projected onto water. Makes me long for a stage performance of some kind!

  8. That DOES look like fun! Except for the resident evil, of course. Resident evil is never fun.
    :-) :-)

    Very funny Renee!