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The Great Movie Ride was an attraction at Disney's Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World Resort and a dark ride which took guests through scenes from famous films throughout motion picture history.

The ride was located inside a recreation of the famous Hollywood landmark Grauman's Chinese Theatre. However, because The Walt Disney Company was denied permission to use the name "Grauman", the proper name of the building is simply "The Chinese Theatre". (Also, at the time the attraction was opened, the actual Grauman's Theater was officially known as "Mann's Chinese Theater" as it was owned by the Mann film theater group.)

The facade was almost completely blocked from view in 2001 when a giant replica of the Sorcerer's Hat was built directly in front of it. It served as the park's symbol until it was demolished in 2015. On July 15, 2017, Disney announced that the attraction would close and be replaced with a dark ride themed after Mickey Mouse.[1] It opened March 2, 2020.


  • Relive some of the greatest movie moments in history during a tram ride that puts you in the middle of the magic.
  • Step back in time as you behold a full-scale reproduction of Grauman's Chinese Theatre. Featuring handprints, footprints, and signatures of some of Disney's greatest stars embedded in the cement outside, the theater meticulously captures the pageantry of the legendary movie palace that has become a symbol of Hollywood's Golden Age.
  • Parade inside the art-deco-inspired grand lobby and view a dazzling menagerie of props, set pieces, and costumes from classic films.
  • Stroll onto a soundstage designed to recall 1930's-era Hollywood and board a tram for a captivating tour of some of Tinseltown's greatest film scenes. Glide beneath a flashing movie marquee and cross over into a world that could only exist in the movies.
  • Featuring nearly 50 lifelike Audio-Animatronics replicas of legendary movie stars, lavishly produced set pieces and wondrous special effects, the Great Movie Ride immerses you in the thrills, chills, and romance of some of the most memorable moments in motion picture history.
  • Your informative tour guide will set the stage for the scenes you'll visit. Just don't be surprised if something unexpected happens along the way. Keep telling yourself, it's only a movie.

The Queuing Area[]

The queue wound through a recreation of Grauman's Chinese Theatre lobby past glass display cases containing actual costumes, props, and set pieces from various films. The queue then took guests into a small pre-show theatre where guests viewed a series of condensed film trailers for the various films that were featured on the ride. The queue line ended at a pair of automatic doors at the front of the theatre that led into a 1930s era Hollywood soundstage where guests were loaded onto waiting ride vehicles.

Props that were displayed in the queue area throughout the ride's existence[]

The Ride[]

The neon theatre marquee was located inside of the 1930s-era Hollywood soundstage at the beginning of the ride. As guests reached the end of the queue, they entered a 1930s-era Hollywood soundstage where they were loaded by cast members into one of two sets of open, theatre-style seating ride vehicles. The vehicles utilized a "traveling theatre" style ride system similar to the Universe of Energy attraction at Epcot. However, here the ride vehicles were much smaller in size, were grouped together in pairs of two, and featured an open cab in the first row of the front vehicle for a live tour guide to stand, provide narration, and operate the ride vehicle. When the attraction was operating during the peak season, both sets of ride vehicles were used. Otherwise, only the second set of ride vehicles was used. On some occasions (most likely to occur during performances of Fantasmic!) when the park was not crowded, only one vehicle would be used.

The film set within the soundstage featured a large neon theatre marquee and a cyclorama of the 1930s-era Hollywood Hills complete with the original Hollywoodland Sign. As the ride began, the tour guide on the ride vehicle welcomed guests and informed them that they would be taking them through scenes from different classic films throughout history.

The first genre of films introduced were musicals, which began with a pyramid of Audio-animatronic chorus girls in a scene from Busby Berkeley's Footlight Parade. The next musical scenes included audio-animatronics of Don Lockwood (Gene Kelly) swinging from a lamp post from the film Singin' in the Rain, followed by Mary Poppins (Julie Andrews) and Bert (Dick Van Dyke) singing Chim Chim Cher-ee on the rooftops of London in Mary Poppins.

The next scene was a tribute to gangster films. The ride vehicle passed through the dark and seedy backstreets of 1930's Chicago and past an audio-animatronic Tom Powers (James Cagney) in a scene from The Public Enemy. When the Bandit show was running, the lead ride vehicle continued on to the next scene while the second car was stopped by a red light above a tunnel entrance. The tour guide stopped the ride vehicle and waited for a green light, not wanting to "break the law, even if it is just a movie." While stopped, a live gangster named Mugsy (male) or Mugsi (female) and their audio-animatronic sidekicks Squid and Beans showed up and got involved in a shoot-out with rival mobsters (Brains, Legs, and Weasel) in a car on the opposite side of the street where the ride vehicle was stopped, resulting in Beans getting badly wounded. Although Squid and Beans were left behind to "give [the gangster's] regards to the warden," the live gangster chased away the tour guide and hijacked the ride vehicle. When the gangster noticed the red light, they shot it out and made their getaway aboard the ride vehicle.

Next was a tribute to the Western genre. Here, guests encountered audio-animatronics of the Man with No Name (Clint Eastwood) standing near a saloon and Ethan Edwards (John Wayne) sitting atop his horse. If the ride vehicle was already being driven by the gangster, it continued past a shoot-out between the town sheriff and an audio-animatronic bank robber named Snake. On this version of the show, the ride vehicle stopped here while the robbery was in progress and a live bank robber named Kate Durango (female) or Kid Carson (male) appeared from inside the bank. After getting into a shoot-out with the town sheriff and chasing the tour guide away, the bandit blew up the town bank with dynamite and hijacked the ride vehicle. Following this scene, the remainder of the attraction was the same for both sets of ride vehicles.

As the ride vehicle continued into a spaceship, a narrator's voice stated that this was the Nostromo, the ship from the film Alien. The narrator then told guests of the Alien (Bolaji Badejo) lurking within the ship waiting to claim its next victim. Guests could also hear the Nostromo's mother computer warning of the imminent self-destruction countdown. Hearing this, the hijacker became nervous and sped the ride vehicle through the ship. But not before the alien appeared and attacked the guests, popping out from both the ceiling and the wall. Before exiting the spaceship, the ride vehicle passed a scene of an audio-animatronic Ellen Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) holding a flamethrower as she prepared to confront the Alien. Behind her was a steady drip of slime. This could only be seen if the rider paid close attention to that part of the scene.

The ride vehicle next entered a scene set in an ancient Egyptian temple filled with snakes. The narrator informed guests that they were in a scene from Raiders of the Lost Ark as audio-animatronic figures of Indiana Jones (Harrison Ford) and Sallah (John Rhys-Davies) struggled to lift the Ark of the Covenant. A second room within the temple (though not from the film) featured a large altar in the form of the ancient Egyptian god Anubis. Near the top of the altar, a large jewel was being watched over by a cloaked temple guard. The hijacker saw it, stopped the ride vehicle, and disembarked to retrieve it. Before touching it, the temple guard gave a warning that those who disturbed it must pay with their life. Ignoring the warning, the hijacker reached to grab it. Suddenly, a plume of smoke shot from the ground. When it dispersed, the hijacker was now nothing more than a skeleton (still reaching for the jewel) and the temple guard was revealed to be the original tour guide who reboarded the vehicle and continued the ride.

The next film genre introduced was the horror film as the ride vehicle traveled through an ancient burial chamber full of mummies who had come to life. The ride vehicle soon left the tomb and entered a jungle, which featured a scene from Tarzan the Ape Man. Here, audio-animatronic figures of Tarzan (Johnny Weissmuller) swinging on a vine, Jane Parker (Maureen O'Sullivan) sitting on top of an elephant, and Cheeta the chimpanzee (Jiggs) could be seen. The ride vehicle then moved past the classic final scene from Casablanca featuring audio-animatronics of Rick Blaine (Humphrey Bogart) and Ilsa Lund (Ingrid Bergman) as they stood in front of a waiting airplane. Some incorrectly claimed that this plane, a Lockheed Model 12 Electra Junior, was the actual one from the film, but it wasn't as no full-size one was actually used in it. The one on the attraction was allegedly used in Tarzan's New York Adventure and other films in the 1940s before being purchased by Disney. Some people have gone far enough to deduce that this plane was used for some of Casablanca's insert shots. The back half was cut off and could be found resting along the shoreline of the Jungle Cruise attraction at the Magic Kingdom.[3] Next, the ride vehicle passed a film projection of Mickey Mouse in his role as The Sorcerer's Apprentice from the classic Disney animated film Fantasia.

The ride vehicle then entered into the Munchkinland scene from The Wizard of Oz, where Dorothy Gale (Judy Garland)'s house had landed on top of the Wicked Witch of the East. During peak season, both sets of ride vehicles met up here and came to a stop in the middle of the scene. Audio-animatronic Munchkins began to appear from various places and sang as they welcomed the riders to their home. However, a plume of smoke suddenly rose from the ground as an audio-animatronic Wicked Witch of the West (Margaret Hamilton) appeared and asked who was responsible for killing her sister. The tour guide aboard the first set of ride vehicles answered her before she finally disappeared in another puff of smoke. The Munchkins finally reappeared from their hiding places and began to sing again as both sets of ride vehicles followed the Yellow Brick Road out of Munchkinland past audio-animatronic figures of Dorothy, The Scarecrow (Ray Bolger), the Tin Woodman (Jack Haley), the Cowardly Lion (Bert Lahr), and Toto (Terry) standing in front of the Emerald City, and onto the ride's grand finale.

For the grand finale, both sets of ride vehicles entered a large, dark theatre where they lined up side-by-side and came to a stop in front of a large film screen. There, a fast-paced three-minute film montage of classic film moments was shown. At the conclusion, both sets of ride vehicles exited the theatre, guests applauded for the tour guide, lined up single-file again and returned to the 1930s soundstage where the ride concluded and exited the attraction.

Unlike many Disney dark rides that featured separate embarkation and debarkation areas, this one had only a single combined unloading and loading area. The last people to exit the vehicles often passed the next group of guests waiting to board the vehicles. At the time the ride was designed (the mid to late 1980's), it was common throughout the theme park industry to have all major rides exit into a merchandise store selling novelties associated with the attraction the guests just exited. The ride did not exit directly into a store.

Voice Talents[]

  • Gene Kelly as Don Lockwood (archival recording)
  • Doug McClure as John Wayne
  • Julie Andrews as Mary Poppins (archival recording)
  • Liza Minnelli as Dorothy Gale
  • Dick Van Dyke as Bert (archival recording)
  • Bill Farmer as the Cowardly Lion
  • Humphrey Bogart as Rick Blaine (archival recording)
  • Robert Osborne as himself


The Great Movie Ride featured several scenes with well-known musical and instrumental numbers from Hollywood films, either performed by the animatronic characters during each movie scene or played as background music.

Songs featured in the soundtrack of the attraction[]

  • "Hooray for Hollywood" - performed by a male chorus from the 1937 film Hollywood Hotel
  • "By a Waterfall" - performed by Scotty Blair (Dick Powell), Bea Thorn (Ruby Keeler), and Chorus from the 1933 film Footlight Parade
  • "Singin' in the Rain" - performed by Don Lockwood (Gene Kelly) from the 1952 film Singin' in the Rain
  • "Chim Chim Cher-ee" - performed by Bert (Dick Van Dyke) and Mary Poppins (Julie Andrews) from the 1964 film Mary Poppins
  • "The Raiders March" - performed by John Williams from the 1981 film Raiders of the Lost Ark
  • "Medley" ("Ilsa Returns" / "As Time Goes By" / "Bitterness" / "Laszlo" / "Agitato No. 1" / "Ilsa" / "La Marseillaise") - performed by Max Steiner from the 1942 film Casablanca
  • "The Sorcerer's Apprentice" - performed by Irwin Kostal and the Disney Studio Orchestra from the 1940 film Fantasia
  • "Ding-Dong! The Witch Is Dead" / "We Welcome You to the Munchkin Land" / "Follow the Yellow Brick Road" / "You're Off to See the Wizard" - performed by the Munchkins from the 1939 film The Wizard of Oz
  • "The Entertainer" - performed by Marvin Hamlisch from the 1973 film The Sting
  • "Axel F" - performed by Harold Faltermayer from the 1984 film Beverly Hills Cop
  • "Also Sprach Zarathustra: Einleitung, oder Sonnenaufgang" - performed by The City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra from the 1968 film 2001: A Space Odyssey
  • "Dance of the Hours" - performed by Leopold Stokowski and the Philadelphia Orchestra from the 1940 film Fantasia
  • "Tara's Theme" - performed by Max Steiner, Boston Pops Orchestra, and John Willams from the 1939 film Gone with the Wind
  • "The Throne Room and End Title" - performed by John Williams and the London Symphony Orchestra from the 1977 film Star Wars
  • "Step in Time" - performed by Bert (Dick Van Dyke) and the Chimney Sweeps from the 1964 film Mary Poppins
  • "Tubular Bells" - performed by Mark Ayres from the 1973 film The Exorcist
  • "Monsters, Inc." - performed by Randy Newman from the 2001 film Monsters, Inc.


Since its inception, the ride had some modifications worth noting.

Footlight Parade[]

The first sequence of the ride, Footlight Parade, was plagued with engineering and technical problems from the beginning. When the ride was newly opened, the Footlight Parade segment was different than it is today. The entire portion following the neon lighted entrance was fleshed out. All the walls leading up to, around, and beyond the "cake" were painted in art deco style patterns as seen in "By A Waterfall". Approximately three "diving boards" with three mannequin "dancers" wearing capes were perched on the right hand side of the wall as you enter the ride segment. The five-tiered "cake" was prominently displayed at a left hand turn. It was in the open air illuminated with an array of animated lights. During this pass through the Footlight Parade segment, riders would hear a "loop" of "By A Waterfall" (a song featured in Footlight Parade) lasting approximately 40 seconds as bubbles fell from the ceiling. when mickey and minnie's runaway railway opened the footlight parade was replaced with the park.

For approximately the first year, the "cake" actually rotated and was adorned with water jets as seen in the film. Allegedly, the rotating "cake" mechanism was constantly breaking down, causing frequent repairs and downtime. In addition, the water pumps would constantly fail, flooding the ride path. Park operations believed it was much cheaper and less problematic to leave the "cake" in place with lighting effects used to provide what imagineers term as "kinetics" to the segment.

This segment was still the "opening act" of the ride, but significantly toned down. The guests now entered a segment with its lighting significantly diminished. The outer walls were dark with practically no art deco recreations from the film set. The "diving boards" had been replaced with art deco style wall sconces. Instead, guests passed through a deco inspired archway to find themselves facing a large scrim-lined proscenium decorated with grey/blue clouds and remnants of the art deco set designs. Throughout the segment, three large rotating projections of Busby Berkeley-style kaleidoscope dance sequences appeared on the scrim (from By A Waterfall, 42nd Street, and Shadow Waltz). These disappeared to expose the "cake", which was behind the scrim, and was simultaneously illuminated with washes of light and reflective water effects. The caped dancers on diving boards were now located to the far left of the "cake" behind the scrim. The art deco style wall panels still resided behind the "cake". The looping song segment and bubbles remained.

Wizard of Oz[]

The Wizard of Oz scene did not have major structural changes, but Walt Disney Imagineering replaced the Wicked Witch audio-animatronic character with a newer-design figure utilizing Sarcos technology. The Sarcos-equipped animatronics are capable of a great deal more movement possibilities than the original "limited animation" figure designs, and can move much more quickly. As a result, they can be made much more lifelike. The new witch was reprogrammed to take advantage of the underlying robot, and as a result was one of, if not the, most lifelike characters in the attraction.

2015 Overhaul[]

The ride received a sponsor from Turner Classic Movies, and made it undergo some big changes. The queue area has been updated with screens displaying animated movie posters, and the props and costumes exhibits have been updated with electronic screens as a suitable replacement to the paint covering the old ones, which aged and left the text obscured. The pre-show had also been updated to a short documentary on movies instead of showing numerous classic movie trailers (some are still shown) hosted by Robert Osborne. The electronic narrator had been changed to Osborne, and has taken over more of the live host's role, though the live host still had some role, such as still being confronted by the bandit/gangster, thus the vehicle still got hijacked. The finale had also been updated.


Several allusions to the Great Movie Ride still can be found within the Disney Parks.

  • Several tributes to The Great Movie Ride can be seen when you ride Mickey and Minnie's Runaway Railway. In the carnival fair showscene between Clarabelle's popcorn and Donald's hot dog stands is a faux attraction poster that says "The Great Moving Ride"; depicting an escalator with a group of excited guests going down it.
  • The scene of Runaway Railway with Mickey and Minnie being caught in a tornado is a Wizard of Oz reference (as well as a nod to the originally planned "Kansas" scene in the ride), but if you can get a lucky picture of the tornado, you might be able to spot a mailbox with the phrase "No Place Like Home" etched on the side; serving as a callback to Dorothy's house which guests saw as soon as they entered Munchkinland.
  • One of the more subtle nods occurs as you leave Daisy's Dance Studio in Runaway Railway, going through a back alley that takes you to the Factory scene. Before you go in, look the left hand dumpster and you'll see a trash can which violently shakes, making an angry cat sound. While mostly a stock sound used in several productions, this is the same sound heard in the Great Movie Ride's hijack scene with Mugsy before the gangsters have a turf war.
  • A reference to the Great Movie Ride from the time it was still open can be found within the Jungle Cruise of the Magic Kingdom. The backside of the airplane in the Casablanca scene was used for a downed plane site in this attraction and is referenced in the queue's radio-loop by Albert Awol as pertaining to his sponsors, "Aero-Casablanca" as a reference to the plane's origin in the Great Movie Ride.


  • When Imagineers were designing the James Cagney animatronic present in the "gangster valley" sequence, the late actor's family disapproved the way he was dressed and gave them one of the actual tuxedo suits Cagney wore on some occasions so he would look classy. The "NO HELP WANTED" sign that hanged directly across Cagney was an actual 1920's sign that hung from the MGM Studios lot during the Great Depression. Some of the prop newspapers that were scattered around the ride's show scene were actual copies of headlines from the local Florida newspaper business; the Orlando Sentinel.
  • When the ride first opened in 1989, the John Wayne animatronic had a belt buckle that the actor actually wore in such films like Red River (1948). But once that piece of information became public knowledge, someone stole it and had to be replicated since it was never recovered. Another piece of John Wayne history on the animatronic was a right hand band given to him for good luck when he visited Vietnam. The animatronic is still part of the Florida Disney resort as it's hiding in a private office you need to arrange VIP tours with if you want to see it in person.
  • Humphrey Bogart's animatronic in this ride is a lot taller than the actor was in real life.
  • Even though John Wayne had died in 1979, the actor who impersonated his voice for the ride, Doug McClure, got to meet John when he was still alive and approved of his impression the minute he heard it. In another fact related to celebrity impressions, the actress who voiced Dorothy Gale near the Oz scene finale was none other than Judy Garland's daughter, Liza Minnelli. Ingrid Bergman's dialogue from the final scene of Casablanca wasn't present in the ride due to her family's refusal of giving permission, but her grandchildren were said to have been on the attraction multiple times as a way of visiting their grandmother.
  • On the right side of the Western scene right before the shootout between the sheriff and gangster, there was a sign next to the courthouse that read "RANSOM STODDARD - Attorney at Law - Upstairs" which is a reference to Jimmy Stewart's character from the 1962 film The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance and is one of two films where John Wayne uses the word "pilgrim." [2]
  • Some of the animatronics you'll see in the gangster and Western show scenes were made using molds from previous Disney attractions as Mugsy's goons (Squids & Beans) and the rival gangsters were recycled Pirates of the Caribbean characters while the balcony sheriff was a repurposed Thomas Jefferson from The Hall of Presidents.
  • Originally featuring live-action stunt actors, the gangster shoot-out was a lot more darker in the concept stage as Mugsy would show genuine concern over the guest's safety and the vehicle B tour guide ends up getting shot in the crossfire, though another version had Mugsy shoot the guide in order to hijack the vehicle. Whichever route would happen, the tour guide's white shirt would reveal a bloody wound on his/her chest as he immediately falls to the floor. The effect was accomplished by a pull-away patch sewn onto the costume. But by the time the ride officially opened, the effect was scrapped due to being "too dark" and would require stunt work from both actors. However, one of the bloody shirts is kept in private by a cast member who worked on the ride since its 1989 debut.
  • The Mary Poppins carousel horse from the queue line went back into the Walt Disney Archives around 2013 and was displayed during that year's Disney D23 Expo along with the horse used by Dick Van Dyke (was displayed in the Planet Hollywood restaurants at San Diego and Times Square). Both props were shown again in the first episode of Prop Culture on Disney+.
  • The only bit of the 1989-2014 narrator's dialogue that survived after Robert Osborne took over most of the ride was the "Remain in your vehicle" spiel that plays in the Alien scene just before the Nostromo's computer goes into self-destruct mode.
  • Before its closure in August 2017, The Great Movie Ride was the last attraction from the park's opening day to still be operating.
  • While this isn't 100% confirmed, some believe that the face mold for the Jane animatronic from the Tarzan scene and the highly advanced skeleton frame used for the Wicked Witch of the West were combined to make the Redd animatronic installed during the controversial refurbishment of the Anaheim & Orlando Pirates of the Caribbean rides in 2018.
  • A broken off section of the giant Anubis statue's feet from the Indiana Jones snake pit scene can be seen outside Dok-Ondar's Den of Antiquities shop in the Disneyland version of Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge.
  • After The Great Movie Ride closed down, the Bert animatronic went to Dick Van Dyke and can be seen in the background of a promotional video he did for Bernie Sanders' 2020 election campaign.
  • After the attraction closed in 2017, the Xenomorph animatronic from the attraction was placed into the temporary exhibit "Inside the Walt Disney Archives" next to the Aztec Priest and Captain Rex figures in the Parks and Resorts section in the as part of the 50th anniversary of the Walt Disney Archives at the Bowers Museum in Santa Ana, California as of 2020.
  • The films discussed by Roger Ebert or shown on-screen in the pre-show were 3 Godfathers. 42nd Street, The Adventures of Robin Hood, Alien, Alien vs. Predator, Aliens, Prometheus, An American in Paris, Anchors Aweigh, Angels with Dirty Faces, The Big Trail, Bonnie and Clyde, Bullets or Ballots, Captain Blood, Casablanca, Casino, The Charge of the Light Brigade, The Departed, A Fistful of Dollars, Footlight Parade, For a Few Dollars More, Forbidden Planet, Fort Apache, The Godfather, The Godfather Part II, The Godfather Part III, Gold Diggers of 1933, Gone with the Wind, The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, Goodfellas, The Great Train Robbery, Gunga Din, High Noon, High Plains Drifter, It Happened One Night, The Jazz Singer, Joe Kidd, Key Largo, Little Caesar, The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, Mary Poppins, Mogambo, My Darling Clementine, The Naked Spur, North by Northwest, On the Town, The Outlaw Josey Wales, The Petrified Forest, The Philadelphia Story, The Public Enemy, Red River, Raiders of the Lost Ark, The Roaring Twenties, Scarface, Scarface: The Shame of a Nation, The Searchers, She Wore a Yellow Ribbon, Singin' in the Rain, Stagecoach, Star Wars, To Catch a Thief, To Have and Have Not, The Thing from Another World, A Trip to the Moon, Unforgiven, White Heat, Winchester '73, and The Wizard of Oz.


  • Alien appeared in the ride despite being released by 20th Century Fox rather than MGM or Lucasfilm. Disney had acquired the rights to use the film from Fox several years earlier for a planned ride at the Magic Kingdom, based on it.[4] While it was cancelled, the overall concept later morphed into the Tomorrowland attraction ExtraTERRORestrial Alien Encounter, although the creature from the film was not used on the basis that it was "too frightening".
  • Imagineers wined and dined with Gene Kelly before showing him his doppelganger for the ride and when he saw it, Gene immediately signed off. During the ride's first few months of operation, the umbrella that his animatronic held was sprung open and it sprayed the "rain" water onto the guests riding it. Actress Maureen O'Sullivan, who played Jane in the 1930's Tarzan movies, got her photo taken with her animatronic double riding the elephant. When her figure was finished being assembled in California and ready to be shipped off to Florida, she was wrapped in clear plastic and came completely naked. This is necessary in order to properly to fit the clothes onto an animatronic when being installed and avoid the risk of damaging/wrinkling the fabric, but some people made many frequent visits to the loading docks just to "check the figure out."
  • A 3D adventure called the "Chinese Theater's Villain Ride" was planned (but never built) for replacing the ride. More information about this can be found on the list of never built Disney attractions page.
  • The ride directly inspired the creation of Disney's Hollywood Studios. In an Imagineering book, it was revealed that it was actually going to be the main attraction in a show business themed pavilion at Epcot, which was to be called "Great Moments at the Movies." However, the newly assigned Disney CEO Michael Eisner and WDI president Marty Sklar decided the idea was strong enough to lead an entire new theme park. The idea for the ride was expanded, and the Disney-MGM Studios went into official development.
  • Plans called for the ride to be the main attraction for the Disney-MGM Studios Paris theme park, which was scrapped due to the early financial difficulties of the EuroDisneyland Resort. Years later when the resort began turning profits, a show business themed theme park went into development again, and the Walt Disney Studios Park opened in 2002 at the Disneyland Resort Paris, although minus the ride. A show called CinéMagique was built in lieu of it due to claims by Disney management that the French preferred shows to ride-through attractions.
  • Three separate attempts were made by Walt Disney Imagineering to bring the ride to California. First were plans to incorporate the attraction into the proposed "Disney-MGM Studio Backlot" project, a 40-acre (160,000 m2) film studio themed retail and entertainment district that was planned (but ultimately never built) for downtown Burbank, California during the late 1980s. Several years later, plans called for the ride to serve as the centerpiece of the proposed Hollywoodland at Disneyland, which would have been added to the park during the planned Disney Decade in 1990s. Due to budget cuts, however, that was canceled. Later, plans called for the ride to be built as part of the Hollywood Pictures Backlot area of Disney California Adventure at the Disneyland Resort. But budget cuts in the park's original development planning forced the ride's projected cost to be spent on smaller, original, and less expensive attractions.
  • On November 25, 2014, it was announced that Turner Classic Movies would take over the ride's sponsorship, adding a new pre-show and post-show film hosted by TCM host Robert Osborne. Additionally as part of the deal, Disney and TCM have agreed to a new periodic programming block titled "Treasures of the Disney Vault", focusing on vintage Disney material.
  • When Muppet Vision 3-D opened at the park, the area surrounding the ride was going to be developed into a Muppets-themed area, with another attraction being The Great Muppet Movie Ride, featuring Muppets such as Kermit the Frog and Miss Piggy and their chaotic attempts at making their own versions of classic movies. Again, budget cuts at the stalling theme park forced the idea to be scrapped, along with "The Great Muppet Movie Ride".
  • On the park's opening day, Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Minnie Mouse, Goofy, Roger Rabbit, and other Disney characters placed their signatures, handprints, and footprints in front of the ride's façade.
  • When The Great Movie Ride was first going through development, there were many earlier drafts proposed that ultimately never got used. Originally, every single genre in movie history would have been represented with one show scene devoted entirely to comedy. Taking place in a 19th century town, it would have featured animatronics of Harold Lloyd reenacting his famous scene from Safety Last, Buster Keaton narrowly avoiding a house about to fall down on him, W.C. Fields, Mae West, the Keystone Kops, and Charlie Chaplin's "Little Tramp" persona. The entire scene was cut due to licensing issues as Universal was also seeking these characters out for their own parks. James Cagney was not the intentional choice for the "gangsterland" scene as originally, there was going to be an animatronic based off Edward C. Robinson's character from Little Caesar, but licensing issues fell afoul (a poster of the film could still be seen though). Upon entering the Western scene, you would've been able to see the drunken Kid Shelleen from Cat Ballou, slouching on his horse outside the saloon. But when Lee Marvin's family refused to sign off on his "portrayal and likeness," Imagineers went with "The Man With No Name" from A Fisful of Dollars which Clint Eastwood personally approved of upon inspection. What's more interesting is that there were going to be show scenes devoted to Mel Brooks' Young Frankenstein and the original Ghostbusters with the former showing the monster in "Fronkensteen's" laboratory, and the latter featuring the crew busting Stay Puff/Gozer & the terror dogs with their proton packs. Ghostbusters made it farther into development, but there were two factors to its scrapping: 1) Bill Murray refused to sign off his likeness and 2) Universal beat Disney to the punch with Ghostbusters Spooktacular opening in their Florida theme park. The Indiana Jones scene was going to be a much more elaborate "adventure" scene known as the "Lost Temple." The ride's ending was originally going to have more of a foundation in The Wizard of Oz, with the Fantasia scene being the Cyclone, and also a divider down the middle of the theatre separating the A and B vehicles in the final (film clip) scene. Where the screen is now was where the Wizard would have appeared surrounded by flames. He would say his famous line, "Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain" and the show would be "interrupted" as the curtains to the left or right of the screen would open to reveal either your live bandit (on the A vehicle side) or gangster (on the B vehicle side). Along the outer walls (to the left of the A vehicle or to the right of the B vehicle), is currently large empty carpeted areas. Here was supposed to be large platforms where models of all of the audio-animatronic characters seen earlier in the ride would be standing and take a bow. They would've included familiar faces like Gene Kelly, Mary Poppins, John Wayne, Indiana Jones, Mickey Mouse and Dorothy's gang, but would've also included characters that weren't prominently in the ride like Shirley Temple, Rhett Butler and Scarlett O'Hara from Gone with the Wind, Sally Bowles from Cabaret, George C. Scott as Patton, Rocky Balboa, C-3PO & R2-D2, and the Ghostbusters. Both the extended Wizard of Oz scenes (and by extension, the original finale) were scrapped due to MGM demanding that Disney only use three minutes of dialogue from the original 1939 movie.


Behind the scenes[]


v - e - d
Disney's Hollywood Studios logo 2019
Hollywood Boulevard
Mickey and Minnie's Runaway RailwayCitizens of Hollywood (Reopening in 2024)
Echo Lake
Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Hall of Fame PlazaFor the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along CelebrationIndiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular!Star Tours: The Adventures ContinueVacation Fun
Grand Avenue
Muppet*Vision 3D
Animation Courtyard
Walt Disney PresentsDisney Junior Play and Dance!The Little Mermaid - A Musical Adventure (Opening in Fall 2024) • Star Wars Launch Bay
Sunset Boulevard
Lightning McQueen's Racing AcademyTheater of the Stars (Beauty and the Beast Live on Stage) • Rock 'n' Roller Coaster Starring AerosmithThe Twilight Zone Tower of Terror
Toy Story Land
Alien Swirling SaucersSlinky Dog DashToy Story Midway Mania!
Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge
Millennium Falcon: Smuggler's RunStar Wars: Rise of the Resistance
Current Entertainment
Fantasmic!Wonderful World of AnimationDisney Movie Magic

Seasonal: Unleash the Villains • Rockin' Fourth of July Celebration • Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM!

Former Attractions and Entertainment
The Great Movie RideThe Magic of Disney AnimationSorcery in the SkyAladdin's Royal CaravanThe Sorcerer's HatMulan ParadeStar Wars: A Galaxy Far, Far AwayHere Come the MuppetsDisney Junior - Live on Stage!The American Idol ExperienceStar ToursThe Making of the Haunted Mansion MovieJourney into Narnia: Creating the Lion, the Witch, and the WardrobeJourney into Narnia: Prince CaspianThe Legend of Captain Jack SparrowStar Wars: Path of the JediMonster Sound Show • ABC Sound Studio • Sounds Dangerous! • Jedi Training Sign Up • Muppets Courtyard Streets of America (Honey, I Shrunk the Kids: Movie Set AdventureLights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt ShowStudio Backlot TourEarffel Tower) • Disney Junior Dance Party!Hercules "Zero to Hero" Victory ParadeSuperStar Television • Disney's Doug Live • Voyage of the Little MermaidJedi Training: Trials of the TempleStar Wars: A Galactic Spectacular

Seasonal: Disney Society Orchestra and Friends

Star Wars: Galactic StarcruiserDisney's Yacht Club ResortDisney's Beach Club ResortDisney's BoardWalk ResortDisney's BoardWalk VillasDisney's Caribbean Beach ResortDisney's Riviera Resort

v - e - d
Kingdom keepers - logo
Kingdom KeepersKingdom Keepers I: Disney After DarkKingdom Keepers II: Disney at DawnKingdom Keepers III: Disney in ShadowKingdom Keepers IV: Power PlayKingdom Keepers V: Shell GameKingdom Keepers VI: Dark PassageKingdom Keepers VII: The Insider
Original Characters: Finn WhitmanCharlene TurnerTerrence MaybeckDell PhilbyIsabella AngeloWayne KreskyAmanda LockhartJessica LockhartMrs. WhithamGreg LuowskiDillard Cole

Disney Characters: Mickey MouseMinnie MouseGoofyDonald DuckDaisy DuckPlutoChip and DaleArielViolet ParrMulanKing TritonMegaraStitchRemyDjangoRajahPrince PhillipElsaRapunzelTimonPumbaaTiggerLiloWinnie the PoohPiglet
Overtakers: MaleficentChernabogThe Evil QueenCruella De VilClaude FrolloUrsulaJafarShan YuJack SparrowTia DalmaGastonPrince JohnHorned KingBig Bad WolfJ. Worthington FoulfellowGideonShenzi, Banzai, and EdDiabloMagic BroomsGreen Army MenBlackbeardShere KhanSi and AmHopperFlotsam and JetsamJudge DoomMadame LeotaSaborThe Headless HorsemanStormtroopersScarZira

Magic KingdomEpcotDisney's Hollywood StudiosDisney's Animal KingdomDisney's Typhoon LagoonDisneyQuestCinderella CastleIt's a Small WorldSplash MountainThe New Adventures of Winnie the PoohBig Thunder Mountain RailroadCamp Minnie-MickeyExpedition EverestFantasmic!Voyage of the Little MermaidDisney DreamWalt Disney: One Man's DreamDisney's Animal Kingdom LodgeSoarin'Mission: SPACETest TrackWonders of LifeMorocco PavilionChina PavilionFrance PavilionNorway PavilionMexico PavilionDisneylandJungle CruiseThe Sorcerer's HatIndiana Jones Adventure: Temple of the Forbidden EyeBuzz Lightyear Astro BlastersThe Haunted MansionCasey Jr. Circus TrainMickey's ToontownMatterhornThe Disney Gallery

v - e - d
Mary Poppins Logo
Films: Mary Poppins (video/soundtrack) • Mary Poppins Returns (video/soundtrack) • The Cat That Looked at a KingMusicalThe Legacy CollectionPractically Poppins in Every Way: A Magical Carpetbag of Countless Wonders
Disney Parks
Country Bear Musical JamboreeGarden of the Twelve FriendsMary PoppinsThe Great Movie Ride

Entertainment: Disney Adventure Friends CavalcadeDisney's BelieveDisney Classics: The Music & The MagicFollow Your DreamsMickey's Magical Music WorldOne Man's Dream II: The Magic Lives OnOnce Upon a Mouse
Restaurants: Jolly Holiday Bakery Cafe
Parades: Celebrate A Dream Come True ParadeDisney's Dreams On Parade: Moving OnDisney's Magical Moments ParadeDisney's Party ExpressDisney Cinema ParadeDisney Magic on ParadeDisney on Parade: 100 Years of MagicDisney Stars on ParadeDisney Stars 'n' CarsDreaming Up!Happiness is Here ParadeMickey's Soundsational ParadeThe Wonderful World of Disney ParadeTokyo Disneyland Electrical Parade: DreamLightsSpectromagic
Fireworks: Believe... There's Magic in the StarsDisney Dreams!Disney Movie MagicDisneyland ForeverFantasy in the Sky Magical: Disney's New Nighttime Spectacular of Magical Celebrations
Spring: Disney's Easter WonderlandDisney's Spring Promenade

Mary Poppins: Mary PoppinsBertGeorge BanksWinifred BanksJane BanksMichael BanksPenguin WaitersFoxAdmiral Boom and Mr. BinnacleUncle AlbertMr. Dawes Sr.Katie NannaMrs. BrillEllenMr. Dawes Jr.Constable JonesJolly Holiday Farm AnimalsThe Pearly BandRobinsMiss LarkChimney SweepsParrot Umbrella

Mary Poppins Returns: William Weatherall WilkinsJackTopsyThe Balloon LadyClydeShamusJohn BanksAnnabel BanksGeorgie BanksAngusHamilton Gooding and Templeton FryeThe Park KeeperPenny FarthingDolphinsRoyal Doulton AnimalsLamplighters
The Cat That Looked at a King: CatKingQueenPrime Minister
Musical: Miss Andrew

LondonCherry Tree LaneEnglish Countryside PaintingRoyal Doulton Music Hall
Mary Poppins: Sister SuffragetteThe Life I LeadThe Perfect NannyA Spoonful of SugarSobre las OlasJolly HolidaySupercalifragilisticexpialidociousStay AwakeI Love to LaughFeed the Birds (Tuppence a Bag)A British BankFidelity Fiduciary BankChim Chim Cher-eeStep in TimeA Man Has DreamsLet's Go Fly a Kite

Mary Poppins Returns: (Underneath the) Lovely London SkyA ConversationCan You Imagine That?The Royal Doulton Music HallA Cover is Not the BookThe Place Where Lost Things GoTurning TurtleTrip a Little Light FantasticNowhere to Go But Up
Musical: Temper, TemperPractically PerfectAnything Can HappenBrimstone and TreaclePlaying the GameBeing Mrs. BanksGood for NothingCherry Tree LanePrecision and Order
Deleted Songs: The Anthropomorphic ZooThe ChimpanzooThe Right SideThe Land of SandAdmiral BoomMary Poppins' MelodyYou Think, You BlinkThrough The Eyes of LoveWest WindTiki TownThe North Pole Polka

v - e - d
Indiana Jones logo
Films: Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny (soundtrack/video)

Video games: Disney Emoji BlitzIndiana Jones and the Great Circle

Disney Parks
The Great Movie RideIndiana Jones Adventure: Temple of the Crystal SkullIndiana Jones Adventure: Temple of the Forbidden EyeIndiana Jones et le Temple de PérilThe Tropical Americas

Entertainment: Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular!
Restaurants: Indiana Jones Adventure OutpostJock Lindsey's Hangar Bar
Fireworks: Disney Movie MagicRemember... Dreams Come True
Summer: Indiana Jones Summer of Hidden Mysteries

Indiana JonesMarion RavenwoodSallahMarcus BrodyRené BelloqNazisJock LindseyShort RoundMola RamMaraPacoCrystal SkullQuetzalcoatlJürgen VollerHelena ShawTeddy KumarColonel Weber
IndiaChinaSouth AmericaItalyGermanyGreeceVeniceAfricaConnecticutHimalayas
See Also
The Raiders MarchArk of the CovenantLEGO Indiana JonesDial of DestinyHelena's Theme