- Walt Disney World/Hollywood Studios is a star article! It is a high-quality article complete with maps, photos, and great information.
At Disney's Hollywood Studios , you can help Indiana Jones escape from the Nazis, take a wild limousine ride through Los Angeles, get shrunk to the size of a gnat, and learn all about the behind-the-scenes process of creating films and animation.
This compact but fun-filled theme park is located at a major crossroads in the Walt Disney World Resort, with plenty of thrill rides and effects-laden shows. The ESPN Wide World of Sports is nearby.
- "The World you have entered was created by The Walt Disney Company and is dedicated to Hollywood: not a place on a map, but a state of mind that exists wherever people dream and wonder and imagine, a place where illusion and reality are fused by technological magic. We welcome you to a Hollywood that never was, and always will be." Michael D. Eisner, May 1, 1989
Walt Disney World's third theme park opened in May 1989 as Disney-MGM Studios, joining the Magic Kingdom and EPCOT. The park, billed as "the Hollywood that never was", features live shows and attractions based on movie and television favorites, from classic Golden Age films to modern-day blockbusters. The park is not just about Disney productions, either; it's also where you'll find rides and shows based on Lucasfilm properties, ABC television, and Jim Henson's Muppets.
Among the top attractions is an exceptional thrill ride, The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror (a 13-story vertical drop).
Just south of Hollywood Studios is the ESPN Wide World of Sports complex, the spring training home of the Atlanta Braves and host to countless other sporting events throughout the year.
Productions at the Studios
- The revival of The Mickey Mouse Club (or MMC) that is filmed here has kickstarted the career of, among others, JC Chasez, Keri Russell, Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake, and Christina Aguilera.
- The first movie filmed here was the poorly-received Splash, Too, the 1988 direct-to-TV sequel to 1984's Splash.
The genesis of the "Studios" theme park was as a new pavilion for EPCOT Center's Future World that would provide an animatronic ride through cinematic history, much as World of Motion did for transportation and Spaceship Earth did for communication. This spark of an idea was so inspiring, however, that then-CEO Michael Eisner suggested that the new ride instead become the marquee attraction in an all-new theme park.
The original vision for this new park was to combine a traditional theme park atmosphere: rides, shows and restaurants with a real working production studio. A team of animators began work even before the park opened to the public, working on real Disney animation: Mulan and Lilo & Stitch, among others, are animated entirely at the theme park. Live-action is also filmed here, from movies like Newsies and Ernest Saves Christmas to television shows such as Mickey Mouse Club and Adventures in Wonderland. Most importantly, all of these production facilities are viewable on the park's Backstage Studio Tour: guests can actually see animating and filming as they occurred, if their timing is right; if not, they still get to see the real sets and real studios where their favorite productions are created. A backlot was also created and placed on the tour, with house facades used in actual films and television shows and authentic props from movies like Flight of the Navigator and Star Wars.
Out of Disney World's theme parks, Hollywood Studios has the most intense rides and are suited more for older children and teenagers. Parents with younger children may want to try out Magic Kingdom if the rides seem too intense for them. If you want to stay in the park, several character greetings dot the park for younger children.
The Osborne Family Spectacle of Lights, or some small fraction thereof.
Hollywood Studios is just southwest of Epcot; it's on Buena Vista Drive, which is accessible from either World Drive or Epcot Center Drive. There are two entrances - a north and south entrance (N Studio Drive and S Studio Drive, respectively). Parking is $17 per car, although Disney resort guests can park for free, just show your "Key to the World" card at the toll gate.
Parking is free at the ESPN Wide World of Sports, which is on South Victory Way, south of Osceloa Parkway.
By Disney transportation
From Epcot and nearby resorts
From Epcot, the BoardWalk, the Yacht and Beach Clubs, and the Swan and Dolphin, you can take the Friendship ferries to Hollywood Studios. There is also a nice wide walking path that follows a similar route. Note that if you are coming from Epcot, you must exit through that park's rear entrance: the International Gateway, located between the United Kingdom and France pavilions in World Showcase. From Epcot's main entrance, there is a bus that goes to the Studios.
From Animal Kingdom and other resorts
From other areas of the property, simply go to the bus stop and wait for the Studios bus to arrive. You will be dropped off in front of the Hollywood Studios gates.
From the Magic Kingdom
Take the monorail or ferry to the Transportation and Ticket Center, then board the Studios bus.
From Downtown Disney
Downtown Disney does not have direct buses to the parks; you will need to make your way to a resort, then go from that resort to Hollywood Studios. The best option here might be to take the bus to the Swan, which is the closest hotel to the Studios, then take the Friendship or the walking path to the Studios. Another option is to walk or take the boat to the Saratoga Springs resort, then the bus to the Studios.
To the Wide World of Sports
Public transportation to the Wide World of Sports is limited. Buses are available only from the All-Star Resorts, the Caribbean Beach Resort, and the Pop Century Resort, so you'll need to get to one of those hotels before switching buses. The buses regularly run only Thursday through Monday, from 5PM to 11PM. If there's a special event going on outside of those days and times, bus service will start one hour before the event and end no earlier than 11PM.
Map of Disney's Hollywood Studios
Upon entering the park, you'll find yourself on Hollywood Boulevard, the park's equivalent of the Magic Kingdom's Main Street, U.S.A. Shops line both sides of this street, perfect for grabbing a souvenir on your way out at the end of the day. (Feel free to browse on the way in, though; you can always come back later, or you can have it held for you or delivered to your Disney resort.) Here, it's perpetually the 1930s, so keep an eye out for young starlets, ambitious directors, suspicious policemen, eager autograph hounds, and the like. These Streetmosphere actors play out comedic vignettes throughout the day, and they may just pull you into their stories.
At the end of Hollywood Boulevard, you won't be able to miss the beautiful Chinese Theater. It's the centerpiece of the park and the most important landmark to remember if you get lost.
As you travel down Hollywood Boulevard, you'll find the famous intersection with Vine St., a smaller street that heads off to the left towards Echo Lake. The next intersection is with Sunset Boulevard, another major thoroughfare that branches to the right. Here you'll find more shops and more Streetmosphere, and looming in the distance is the 199-foot-tall Hollywood Tower Hotel, which houses the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror. (Why 199 feet? If it were one foot taller, it would require a blinking red light at the top under federal aircraft regulations.) You'll also find the Red Car Trolley, replica 1920s streetcars that run guests from the Sunset Boulevard to the Tower of Terror and back.
In a corner of Sunset Boulevard is Roger Rabbit's Hollywood, home of the Maroon Cartoons studios, inside which is the Toontown Trolley, Roger Rabbit's Car Toon Spin and Baby Herman's Runaway Baby Buggy.
Past Sunset, as you approach the Chinese Theater, to the right there is a large gateway, through which you'll find The Magic of Disney Animation tour and the Backstage Studio Tour.
From there, behind the Chinese Theater, you enter New York Street, where the Honey, I Shrunk The Kids Movie Set Adventure is located and the Muppet Studios, where Jim Henson's Muppet*Vision 3-D and The Great Muppet Movie Ride are located. Coming back toward the front of the park, you end up at Echo Lake, just look for the giant Dinosaur Gertie. The Lucasfilm attractions are nearby.
See and Do
The unfortunate façade of the Hollywood Tower Hotel. If someone offers you a ride to the thirteenth floor in the elevator, you may be in for a ... let-down.
Disney or Universal?
Disney's Hollywood Studios is sometimes confused with the two parks at the other big Orlando resort, Universal Orlando Resort. Universal Studios Florida, in particular, is very similar in concept, but its licensed properties include Men In Black, Despicable Me, The Simpsons, E.T., and Shrek. Universal's other Florida park is Islands of Adventure, where you'll find Dr. Seuss, Jurassic Park, Harry Potter, and King Features cartoons.
Even though Marvel Comics is now owned by Disney, a pre-existing contract with Universal means that Islands of Adventure is still the place to go to find Spider-Man and his friends, at least for now.
Hollywood Studios' attractions separate into one of two camps: sedate but fun stage shows and movie-themed rides. There's very little in-between; even The Great Movie Ride is more like a theater production than a ride.
Fastpass queues are available for the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular, Star Tours, The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror, The Magic of Disney Animation, and the Backstage Studio Tour. The Backstage Studio Tour is incredibly popular; a Fastpass is highly recommended, and getting there early to pick up a Fastpass is essential, as they usually run out by early afternoon, and the earlier time frames are out by mid-morning.
For parade and stage show performance times, which change daily, please see the Guide Map and the Times Guide you'll receive when you enter the park. You can also check the Wait Times Board at the corner of Hollywood and Sunset Boulevards, which lists current wait times for rides and show times for shows.
The denotes rides with safety restrictions. See Stay safe in the main Walt Disney World article for more information.
A tale of two rides
The Lockheed Electra 12 in the Casablanca scene in The Great Movie Ride is only the plane's forward section. The tail section may be found in the Boneyard on the Backstage Studio Tour.
Hollywood Boulevard is mostly a location for shops, restaurants, and Streetmosphere, but at its far end is where you'll find the park's centerpiece attraction, the Great Movie Ride. While you're at the Chinese Theater, be sure to check out the cement plaza in front, just like at the real Chinese Theater in Hollywood, you'll find a number of celebrities have placed their handprints and signatures there. Everyone from Donald Duck and R2-D2 to Carol Burnett and Michael Jackson has left his or her mark.
However, go through the imposing studio gate and you'll find The Magic of Disney Animation and the Backstage Studio Tour.
- Backstage Studio Tour. Continuous 2-hour tours. Starts off with you boarding a tram for a tour of the Disney's Hollywood Studios backlot, which includes the exterior of the Production Warehouse and the exterior of the production crews' Production Bungalows. After those two buildings are seen, there is a chance to see some Disney character topiaries, some of which have taken 10 years to grow, in the outdoor Greens Department. The tram then goes inside a building which includes the Costuming Department, the Lighting Department, the Disney Channel Production Control Room and the Scenic Shop. After the tram goes outside of the building, it goes past Residential Street, which is a street lined with house facades from famous TV shows and movies. Also on Residential Street is Herbie the Love Bug, who drives up to the tram and says hello. The tram then drives past the Backlot Church, where the production crews go on a Sunday, and the Washington Square Arch on New York Street, which is cordoned off by police barriers. After driving past a courthouse facade on New York Street, the tram drives past a small forest used as Kashyyyk in Star Wars: Episode III: Revenge of the Sith. The tour continues past the Boneyard, where the collection of props and vehicles includes the circus wagon from the TV series Dumbo's Circus, the tail section of the Lockheed Electra 12 from Casablanca, the Blue Thunder helicopter from the movie and TV series of the same name, the Studebaker Commander from The Muppet Movie, the Austin A35 from The Great Muppet Caper, the Checker Marathon from The Muppets Take Manhattan, Ebenezer Scrooge's tombstone from The Muppet Christmas Carol, the Hispaniola from Muppet Treasure Island, the Autocar DC-64B from Muppets from Space, the frog terrarium from Kermit's Swamp Years, the Kermit the Frog statue from It's a Very Merry Muppet Christmas Movie, the silver slippers from The Muppets' Wizard of Oz, the Rolls-Royce Silver Spur from The Muppets, the giant CIA badge from Muppets Most Wanted, the Mercedes-Benz G5 and the Flying Wing from Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark, the Duesenberg Auburn convertible from Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, the Citroën 11 Légère Cabriolet, the Tank Mark VIII and the Honda XL 500s from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, the Buick Special from Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, a podracer from Star Wars: Episode I: The Phantom Menace, the Republic attack gunship from Star Wars: Episode II: Attack of the Clones, an Eta-2 Actis-class interceptor from Star Wars: Episode III: Revenge of the Sith, an X-wing starfighter from Star Wars: Episode IV: A New Hope, a snowspeeder from Star Wars: Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back, a sand skiff from Star Wars: Episode VI: Return of the Jedi, a command shuttle from Star Wars: Episode VII: The Force Awakens, the spaceship from Flight of the Navigator, a keel boat from The Treasure of Matecumbe, the escape pod from the film adaptation of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, a Spinner police car from Blade Runner, the Gold Coast Flyer Express from Tough Guys, the figurehead of the Black Pearl from Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, bone cages from Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, the Sao Feng Map from Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End, a mermaid coffin from Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, the submarine and chopper from Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou, mausoleums from The Haunted Mansion, the Fairchild C-123K Provider from Air America, the steamroller and waste disposal truck from Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, the Curtiss P-40 Warhawk and the USS Constellation from Michael Bay's Pearl Harbor, a nuke and the drilling machine from Armageddon, a gondola from Casanova, the Beverly Hills sign from Beverly Hills Chihuahua, the Blackbird powerboat from the TV series The 100 Lives of Black Jack Savage and the Nautilus submarine from 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. Behind the boneyard is a lake that is used for underwater shots in the films shot here. The highlight of the tram tour is Catastrophe Canyon, where you can experience some disastrous special effects up-close: its water cannons, for example, are strong enough to shoot a basketball over the Empire State Building. After the tram escapes, you drive past an airstrip which has Walt Disney's private plane, "The Mouse", on the runway, and the ACME Warehouse from Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, where Judge Doom's Dipmobile has broken through a wall and is threatening to spray the tram and its occupants with Dip. The tram then stops at a station beside New York Street, where you disembark and go on the walking tour, which begins with a demonstration of water effects in a giant water tank used in Michael Bay's Pearl Harbor, with one lucky tour-goer getting to star in a water-soaked film clip. Then, you take a peek inside the Special Effects Workshop which demonstrates how optical and mechanical effects work, and immediately following is the 3 soundstages on which TV shows like The Mickey Mouse Club and films like 101 Dalmatians are filmed on. Afterwards, you go inside the Post Production Editing and Audio Department, where you see the editors, sound engineers and the technicians at work. Finally, there is a trip to the Walt Disney Theater, which shows a sneak preview of the latest movie by Disney, and the attraction ends with a trip to the Disney Studio Store. edit
- The Great Movie Ride. This slow-moving ride through scenes from some of the greatest movies begins by going through a queue line themed to the lobby of the Chinese Theater in Hollywood, passing a collection of costumes, set pieces and props from famous movies which include a miniature model of the Dipmobile, Judge Doom's hat, gloves and glasses, Eddie Valiant's bullet case and the Toon bullets from Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, the Dejarik board from Star Wars: Episode IV: A New Hope, Freddy Krueger's sweater from A Nightmare on Elm Street, Alex Delarge's hat from A Clockwork Orange, Rose's dress from Titanic, Indiana Jones' machete and monkey heads from Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, the ruby slippers from The Wizard of Oz, Ripley's spacesuit from Alien, a Thermal detonator from Armageddon, Sam's piano from Casablanca, a dress worn by Maria in The Sound of Music, the titular object from Cocoon, a miniature model of the Nautilus submarine and a diving suit from 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, Susan's costume from The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe, a green peacock Elizabethan dress from Shakespeare in Love and a carousel horse from Mary Poppins. The ride itself includes scenes from movies recreated using Audio-Animatronics, including Alien, The Wizard of Oz, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Mary Poppins, Tarzan the Ape Man, The Public Enemy, Footlight Parade, Singin' in the Rain, Casablanca, Fantasia, The Searchers and A Fistful of Dollars. But remember: in the movies, not everything is as it seems! This is a great choice for your first ride of the day, to really get you in the mood and mindset of the whole park. The incredible attention to detail means you see something new every time you ride it. edit
- The Magic of Disney Animation. This is a tour that offers guests a peek at Walt Disney Feature Animation Florida. The attraction begins with an animated short film called Back to Never Land, starring Walter Cronkite and Robin Williams, which demonstrates the basics of animation and what it's like to be a cartoon character. If you look around the auditorium while the film is on, you'll find rare animation art from the Disney Animation Collection. Then the actual tour begins as you see the story department, the animation department, the clean-up department, the effects department, the background department, the photocopying department, the paint lab, the inking-and-painting department, the camera department and the editing department. The final part of the attraction is a montage of classic Disney moments in the Disney Classics Theater. After the montage finishes, you exit the theatre into the Animation Gallery store. edit
You are traveling through another dimension...
In The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror's pre-ride video, Rod Serling speaks the line "Tonight's story on The Twilight Zone is somewhat unique and calls for a different kind of introduction. This, as you may recognize, is a..." This actually comes from the episode "It's A Good Life", which aired on November 3, 1961. The rest of the dialogue was spoken by a voice actor.
In addition to more shops, restaurants, and Streetmosphere, Sunset Boulevard is home to the Studios' major stage show, Beauty and the Beast, and its popular mega-thrill ride, The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror.
- Beauty and the Beast: Live on Stage. A 20-minute condensation of the popular animated film. It's more "cartoony" than the Broadway musical you may have seen, but it's great for kids who may not sit through a longer production. Colorful costumes and the classic songs make for an entertaining time. edit
- The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror. Rod Serling himself welcomes you into this mystery, involving an elevator on the thirteenth floor, a late-night lightning strike, and vanished guests. Most people ignore the story, though, and just go on this ride for the 13-story free-fall down the elevator shaft, followed by a random sequence of sudden rising and falling. Not for the faint of stomach, period. The view from the top is quite a sight, if you can open your eyes long enough to look. The pre-ride area of the attraction is filled with references both obscure and subtle to various episodes of the TV show. edit
Roger Rabbit's Hollywood
This hidden corner of Sunset Boulevard is the home of Maroon Cartoons, where Roger Rabbit and his toon buddies work. Since the death of R.K. Maroon, Roger has taken the studio into his own hands, although he may not actually know how to run a Hollywood studio.
- Toontown Trolley. For Roger Rabbit's latest production, he has constructed a mockup of a Red Car Trolley, and he has invited you as its test audience. Unfortunately, with the rabbit himself behind the wheel, you may need to hold on to your lunch! edit
- Roger Rabbit's Car Toon Spin. The Toon Patrol have invaded the studios, and have kidnapped Jessica, Roger Rabbit's wife. Fortunately, Benny the Cab is willing to help you rescue her, although you may take a few wrong turnings before you actually get inside the Toon Patrol HQ. edit
- Baby Herman's Runaway Baby Buggy. Baby Herman is filming a short film set inside a hospital, and he wants you to see him film it. Unfortunately, the buggy has rolled off of the set, and now he needs your help to be rescued. edit
New York Street
In New York Street, you'll find façades set up to give the illusion of walking down streets in New York City, using the movie-making technique called "forced perspective". These streets are also where you'll find the Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights every holiday season.
- Honey, I Shrunk the Kids - Movie Set Adventure. A huge play area that makes you look and feel like you're a quarter of an inch tall. Totally safe for kids to run around and climb on everything, from spider webs to anthills. Older folks can look for giant-sized versions of famous objects like a roll of Kodak film and a can of Play-Doh, but watch out for the dog's nose, he's been known to sneeze! edit
In Muppet Studios, you'll meet Kermit and Miss Piggy, who are waiting to make their latest movie, Days of Swine and Roses.
- Jim Henson's Muppet*Vision 3-D. A hilarious show featuring the Muppet characters, shown in a detailed replica of the Muppet Theater. You have to see it to believe it. The combination of a 3-D film, in-theater animatronics and special effects, and a special live-action appearance makes for an immersive show. The pre-show, held in a staging area while the previous main show runs, is just as good as the main show; if it's not too crowded, ask a cast member if you can stay to see the whole thing. The queue area and the pre-show area are overflowing with sight gags and bad puns. You will never see them all in just one trip. edit
- Muppets on Location: Days of Swine and Roses. Join Kermit, Miss Piggy and the rest of the Muppets as they attempt to make their own movie, called Days of Swine and Roses, with the help of the audience. edit
- The Great Muppet Movie Ride. The Muppets' own "Mickey" take on The Great Movie Ride which is also at the park. Like The Great Movie Ride, it is a slow-moving ride through Muppetized scenes from some of the greatest movies, created using Audio-Animatronics of the Muppets, including The Wizard of Oz, Raiders of the Lost Ark, and Frankenstein. However, some scenes may not be what they're supposed to be! edit
Obscure snack-stand references
"Min and Bill", of Dockside Diner fame, was the name of a 1930 MGM film starring Marie Dressler and Wallace Beery, but the name also serves as a reference to Minnie Mouse and Steamboat Willie, Mickey Mouse's character in the first cartoon with a synchronized soundtrack. Gertie the Dinosaur, on the other hand, was made famous by cartoonist Winsor McKay as one of the first-ever animated characters.
On one side of Echo Lake is a large steamboat, known as Min and Bill's Dockside Diner; on the other is a large dinosaur, with Dinosaur Gertie's Ice Cream of Extinction. Around the perimeter of the area are attractions based on Lucasfilm properties, restaurants, and two unique attractions housed inside soundstages.
- Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular. An exciting 35-minute live-action stunt show recreating some of the best scenes from Raiders of the Lost Ark. A few lucky audience members might even get to appear on stage as extras. edit
- The Monster Sound Show. Open seasonally. edit
- Star Tours. The much-loved (but 23-year-old) Star Tours ride puts you in the place of a space tourist en route to the planet Endor. edit
- SuperStar Television. Take part in the filming of a live TV special that looks at the history of TV. edit
Parades and annual events
ESPN The Weekend
Disney's popular ESPN The Weekend annual sports-themed event is no more; the 2011 edition was the eighth and last.
- Disney Stars and Motor Cars. Daytime parade with characters from Disney/Pixar films, each in their own themed vehicle. The parade route starts near the entrance and heads down Hollywood Boulevard to the Sorcerer's Hat; it then heads through the Echo Lake area to a gate near Star Tours. edit
- Disney STEP Classic, (New York Street), . Early Sep. Youth step teams from around the country come to Hollywood Studios to enjoy workshops and a big competition on the last day. edit
- Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights, (New York Street). mid Nov-early Jan. Each year, the Streets of America are transformed into an enormous Christmas display. At Walt Disney World in December, Christmas decorations are all over the place, but the Osborne Family display (moved here when it got too big for the Osborne family home) takes them to the next level. It's very popular; be ready for wall-to-wall people. edit
ESPN Wide World of Sports
South of Hollywood Studios is the ESPN Wide World of Sports complex (formerly Disney's Wide World of Sports), a state-of-the-art sports complex with fields, stadiums, and arenas for a variety of sporting events.
The complex is the flagship facility of the Amateur Athletic Union , which has its headquarters on Hotel Plaza Boulevard in the Downtown Disney area. Regularly-scheduled AAU-sanctioned events are held at the complex from January to August. Outside of that time-frame, whether you'll find something going on is hit-or-miss. If there is something happening, it's probably a high school game with just a handful of spectators.
Admission to the complex counts as one of your "Fun Visits" if you've added the Water Park Fun & More option to your Magic Your Way tickets, however, considering the low cost of admission it could be said that it's better to save your "Fun Visits" for one of the more expensive options. Admission is $14.95 for adults and $10.28 for children ages 3–9.
- Champion Stadium, 700 S Victory Way (World Dr to Osceola Pkwy, east to Victory Way), . A 9,500-seat baseball stadium. The Atlanta Braves play their spring training games here, and the Rookie-league GCL Braves play here all summer. Other events occur throughout the year. $0-$32. edit
- ESPN RISE Games, . Mid- to late-Jul. Two weeks of competition featuring some of the best young athletes in the country. High school athletes compete in basketball, soccer, lacrosse, and football; youth teams will show what they can do in baseball, basketball, field hockey, lacrosse, and track & field. edit
- Old Spice Classic (college basketball), . Late Nov. Since 2006, college basketball fans have been able to catch eight top Division I teams playing a total of twelve games in this early-season tournament. edit
- Walt Disney World Pro Soccer Classic, (Hess Sports Field), . Late Feb. In what's shaping up to be an annual event, four Major League Soccer teams compete in a preseason tournament. $14.50 per day (2 games). edit
Shops line Hollywood Boulevard on both sides, while tourists fill the space in between.
Shoppers will find plenty of generic souvenirs and apparel, of course, making up the lion's share of merchandise found along the main shopping areas (Hollywood Boulevard and Sunset Boulevard). One of the less generic establishments on these two streets is Sunset Boulevard Shops, with menswear, timepieces, housewares, and collectibles.
But Disney's Hollywood Studios is an especially rich location for themed merchandise that's hard to find elsewhere. Most of these locations are found at the exits from associated attractions. Fans of Jim Henson's Muppets, Star Wars, and Indiana Jones should be particularly pleased.
- Animation Gallery, (at the end of the Magic of Disney Animation tour). Here you'll find a combination display gallery/high-end art store, with displays featuring some of Disney's Academy Awards as well as some very expensive animation cels, prints, and collectibles. Wonderful to look at, even if you can't afford to buy anything. edit
- Cover Story, (Hollywood Blvd). In this store, you can buy a replica of Hollywood's most famous newspaper, the Hollywood Reporter, with your picture on the cover. edit
- Crossroads of the World, (near the park entrance). This replica of the central building of the mall of the same name sells souvenirs, Kodak film, sunglasses, rain coats and sundries. edit
- Endor Vendors, (at the exit of Star Tours). This shop offers a wide variety of Star Wars-themed merchandise, in a variety of price ranges. Most Star Wars merchandise is sold online; being able to shop here in person is a rare treat, and there are several exclusive items found only here. edit
- Indiana Jones Adventure Outpost, (near the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular). Indy fans can find authentic, licensed fedoras and bullwhips here, along with more traditional Indy-branded souvenir fare. Currently the shop opens late and closes early, coinciding with the nearby stunt show's performance times. edit
- It's a Wonderful Shop, (between The Great Gonzo's Pandemonium Pizza Parlor and the Muppet Studios Arcade). A Christmas store, open all year, complete with snow on the ground outside. It's a great place to buy Disney ornaments and decorations, even if it's not December. Outside is a fish stall named "Lew Zealand's Boomerang Fish", which features Muppet fish who, every quarter of an hour, spin round and tell fish-related jokes to one another. edit
- Lakeside Vendors, (Echo Lake). At this mockup of a news stand, you'll find a good selection of comic books. edit
- Mickey's of Hollywood, (Hollywood Blvd). Here you'll find exclusive Disney merchandise, including clothes and toys. Occasionally, you'll also be able to find Minnie Mouse in here doing her shopping. edit
- Oscar's Classic Car Souvenirs, (Hollywood Blvd). Here you'll find car-themed souvenirs in a shop that's themed to a garage. edit
- Pacific Electric Pictures, (Hollywood Blvd). If you've ever wanted to star in a Hollywood spectacular, then go to this store, where you can be filmed for a scene in one of several random major Hollywood movies. edit
- Sid Cahuenga's One of a Kind, (near the park entrance). This small store is filled to overflowing with celebrity memorabilia, especially autographed photos. Expensive, but lots of fun to browse. edit
- Stage One Company Store, (just outside Muppet*Vision 3D). This store boasts Muppet merchandise that's hard (or impossible) to find elsewhere. edit
- Sweet Success, (Hollywood Blvd). If you have a sweet tooth, then this is the store for you. Here you'll find speciality candies and M&Ms merchandise. edit
- The Disney Studio Store, (at the exit of the Backstage Studio Tour). This store features Disney and Touchstone-themed clothing and accessories. edit
- The Kodak Darkroom, (Hollywood Blvd). This darkroom-themed store sells Kodak cameras, Kodak film, Kodak camera accessories and photo processing. edit
- Tower Gifts, (at the exit from The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror). The fashion boutique of the Hollywood Tower Hotel has everything for Twilight Zone fans. edit
Disney's Hollywood Studios probably has the most unique restaurants on the property, with most themed around movies and television.
See Eat in the main Walt Disney World article for information on the Disney restaurant pricing system, character dining, dietary restrictions, and advance dining reservations. The telephone numbers below are for extraordinary circumstances only; for reservations and most health or diet issues, call the main Disney Dining number at +1 407 WDW-DINE (939-3463).
Please note that exact opening and closing times may vary with the park hours; check your Times Guide for official restaurant hours. Breakfast is usually served until 10:30AM, and dinner usually starts between 3:30PM and 4:30PM.
- Backlot Express, (Echo Lake between Star Tours and Indy). 11:30AM-park close. The menu is nothing special, but the decor is. The restaurant is themed to look like a huge studio warehouse. There is plenty of wide-open seating here, and because of its location, it's rarely very crowded. $6-$9. edit
- Disney's Hollywood Studios Commissary Restaurant, (Commissary Ln). Park open-park close. An unusually international menu for a counter-service location. The menu varies, but there is usually at least one Asian entree and some sort of Latin American dish. $6-$9. edit
- Muppet Studios Arcade, (Muppet Studios). 11AM-park close. A combined eatery/arcade. Absolutely a must for kids. $5-$9. edit
- Starring Rolls Cafe, (Sunset Blvd near Hollywood Blvd). Park open-4PM. Pastries, sandwiches, coffee. $3-$10. edit
- Studio Catering Company, (New York Street, near the 'Shrunk the Kids' playground). 11:30AM-5:30PM. Possibly the most nondescript restaurant in the park. A good option if you just need to eat quickly while at New York Street. Crowded at lunchtime due to its location; people who came to the park in the morning are usually hitting this area right around noon. $6-$9. edit
- Sunset Ranch Market (Rosie's Red Hot Dogs, Catalina Eddie's Frozen Yogurt Anaheim Produce Co.), (Sunset Blvd). 11AM-park close. These three locations share an outdoor seating area. Salads, pizza, burgers, BBQ, etc. $6-$9. edit
Don't bring your own car; the Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater has one already parked and waiting for you!
- 50's Prime Time Cafe, (Vine St near Echo Lake), ☎ +1 407 560-4365. 11AM-park close. Very good homestyle "comfort food" served in a classic 1950's sitcom kitchen, complete with Formica tabletops and black-and-white televisions. Word to the wise: you had better eat all your vegetables if you want to order dessert. Your server, in character as an ersatz family member, will have no qualms about putting you on the spot about this or any number of things; it's all in good fun, but do not eat here if you're not in the mood to play along. $13-$21. edit
- The Hollywood Brown Derby, (Sunset Blvd at Hollywood Blvd), ☎ +1 407 560-4835. 11:30AM-park close. Dine like the stars in this East Coast version of Hollywood's most famous restaurant. The Cobb salad, a Brown Derby original, is just as good as you would expect. $22-$36; Dining Plan requires two credits. edit
- Hollywood & Vine, (Vine St near Hollywood Blvd). Park open-park close. A buffet set in the glitter and glamour of Hollywood in the 1930's. Breakfast and lunch feature the Disney Junior characters for young kids. Currently featured are June from The Little Einsteins, Oso from Special Agent Oso, Jake from Jake & the Neverland Pirates, and Manny from Hanny Manny. $25. edit
- Soundstage Restaurant, (Hollywood Blvd). 11:30AM-park close. This restaurant allows you to dine on the sets of the movie Big Business, which was filmed here, and the menu includes pizza, pasta, sandwiches, soups and salads. * Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater, (Commissary Ln). 11AM-park close. Dine under the stars and watch classic B-movie clips from your custom convertible in a re-created 1950s drive-in movie theater. The menu includes a variety of entrees. Excellent milkshakes. This one might be the most popular restaurant in the park, so plan accordingly. $12-$23. edit $12-$23. edit
- The Catwalk Bar, (Above the Soundstage Restaurant). 11:30AM-park close. This licensed bar is located above the Soundstage Restaurant, and serves wine, beer and cocktails $6-$9. edit
- The Great Gonzo's Pandemonium Pizza Parlor, (Muppet Studios). Noon-park close. There aren't a lot of Italian restaurants at Walt Disney World, but this one fills the casual end of that niche admirably, even if the kitchen is run by The Swedish Chef. The decor is like stepping into a pizza restaurant that has gone mental. $12-$22. edit
- The Hollywood Brown Derby, (Sunset Blvd at Hollywood Blvd), ☎ +1 407 560-4835. 11:30AM-park close. Dine like the stars in this East Coast version of Hollywood's most famous restaurant. The Cobb salad, a Brown Derby original, is just as good as you would expect. $22-$36; Dining Plan requires two credits. edit
- The Terminal Bar, (Next to the Red Car Trolleys boarding station). 11:30AM-park close. This licensed bar is themed to Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, and, like the Catwalk Bar, it serves wine, beer and cocktails $6-$9. edit
At the Caribbean Beach resort, you'll be heading to Old Port Royale for meals; it's the central location of the resort and where all the shopping and dining is.
- Market Street Food Court. 6AM-midnight. This is a fun, casual food court that's designed to look like an outdoor Caribbean street. $7-$10. edit
- Shutters, ☎ +1 407 934-2830. 5PM-10PM. A variety of Caribbean entrees. $16-$28. edit
At the Pop Century and Art of Animation Resorts, you'll dine at a food court:
- Everything Pop, (Pop Century). 6AM-midnight. Typical Disney food court, decorated in the same style as the rest of the Pop Century Resort. $6-$9. edit
- Landscape of Flavors, (Art of Animation). Opening late May; hours TBA. Disney refers to the options at this food court as "better-for-you"; the stations include a soup/salad/sandwich shop, a "world flavors" shop, plus burgers, pizza, and baked goods. Beverage options are a bit more extensive than other food courts as well, with smoothies, organic tea, specialty coffees, and even wine. Price TBA. edit
Wide World of Sports
- ESPN Wide World of Sports Grill. Lunch, dinner; exact times vary depending on events and season. If you're at the Wide World of Sports and need refreshments, this is where you'll go. Soups and sandwiches. $7-$10. edit
The Hollywood stars of the 30s might have enjoyed a libation or two in their day (at least once Prohibition was repealed), but the nightlife around Hollywood Studios is virtually nonexistent. The Tune-In Lounge is attached to the 50's Prime Time Cafe and themed the same; it's often crowded with "family members" waiting for their table in the restaurant, but if you need a drink, Dad's liquor cabinet is open. In fact, all of the table-service restaurants have drinks of some sort available; The Great Gonzo's Pandemonium Pizza Parlor has some particularly interesting cocktails. Each resort has a poolside bar as well: Banana Cabana at the Caribbean Beach resort and Petals Pool Bar at Pop Century.
If you're looking for something more, just take a leisurely walk or ferry ride from the Studios to Disney's Boardwalk, or take a bus from one of the resorts to Downtown Disney.
There's more to do at the Caribbean Beach Resort than just eat and sleep.
If you really want a hotel close to Hollywood Studios, you'll want to stay in one of the Epcot-area resorts. The Yacht and Beach Clubs, the Boardwalk, and the Swan and Dolphin are all within easy walking distance of both Epcot and Hollywood Studios, and the Friendship ferries connect the two parks and five resorts.
The three resorts listed here are not very far from Hollywood Studios, but there are no provisions for walking. You'll be taking a car or bus no matter which park you want to visit.
- Disney's Art of Animation Resort, Century Dr (off Osceloa Pkwy), . The Art of Animation Resort sits across Hourglass Lake from the Pop Century Resort. Like its sibling, Art of Animation will feature giant iconic sculptures, but instead of commemorating pop culture, the resort's themes will involve four Disney/Pixar films. There will eventually be a total of 1,120 family suites and 864 standard rooms. The Finding Nemo and Cars family suites are open now, to be followed by The Lion King suites, and then The Little Mermaid standard rooms in September. Family suites $240+, std rooms $92+. edit
- Disney's Caribbean Beach Resort, 900 Cayman Wy (off E Buena Vista Dr), ☎ +1 407 934-3400 (fax: +1 407 934-3288), . This was Disney's first attempt at creating a more affordable resort, and for a while had the cheapest rooms at Walt Disney World. With the advent of the Pop Century and All-Star Resorts, however, Caribbean Beach is now considered a Moderate resort. This is a visually exciting resort, very open and very colorful. The exterior-entrance rooms are grouped into one of six villages arrayed around a beautiful lake, each with its own exterior color scheme: Barbados, Jamaica, Martinique, Aruba, Trinidad North, and Trinidad South. Old Port Royale, with recreation, food, and shops, is centrally located. Each village has its own pool, beach area, and bus stop. Very special pirate-themed rooms are now available, but they are ridiculously popular. $149-$249; pirate rooms $174-$274. edit
- Disney's Pop Century Resort, 1050 Century Dr (off Osceola Pkwy), ☎ +1 407-938-4000 (fax: +1 407 938-4040), . Walk down memory lane through the best and the worst of 20th-century pop culture. The exterior-entrance rooms are grouped into five "decade" themes—50s, 60s, 70s, 80s, and 90s, each one featuring larger-than-life icons of the appropriate years from hula hoops to 8-tracks to cell phones. The gigantic decor is great fun for kids but may be sensory overload for adults. Aside from the whimsically-shaped pools, there's not much to do here besides catch a bus to the parks. If you're really bored, walk over to the "hourglass" lake and look across to the other side at Disney's Art of Animation Resort; the site was formerly intended for the "Legendary Years" 1900s–1940s expansion of Pop Century. $80-$160. edit
Note that according to Disney's official classifications, Caribbean Beach is in the "Epcot resort area", while Art of Animation and Pop Century are in the "Wide World of Sports resort area".