Another classic Disney Parks ride is on its way out! According to sources, The Great Movie Ride will be closed and remodeled into a new attraction as Disney’s contract with TCM will expire in 2018. The sources say that it is Disney’s decision to not seek renewal.
If thought about more in depth, this should not come as a shock considering Disney’s recent trend to remodel older rides, as beloved as they may be to certain demographics of Disney parks fans (see Disneyland’s Tower of Terror).
The extent of remodeling is not yet clear a this time. No one is certain if the exterior facade will be changed or the specifics of the attraction itself. There is speculation at this point that it will remain a dark ride and the premise may entail following Mickey along his “greatest hits”. It will use the new LPS technology, similar to the Ratatouille attraction in Disneyland Paris (LPS is used in reference to a trackless ride with several ride paths for groups of vehicles which usually cross each other. They may also involve the vehicles starting, stopping, spinning, following each other or moving around each other. i.e. Pooh’s Honey Hunt, Mystic Manor, Ratatouille, Antartica, Alcatraz and now this).If it remains a “movie based” ride, even if it is simply Disney movies, then it stands a chance that the exterior will remain mostly the same.
It’s been clear to Disney management in recent years that GMR does not score well in visitor surveys. They will need to strategize spreading out the crowds once Star Wars and Toy Story Lands open by luring people to other parts of the park. Disney has been highly criticized for the lack of major attractions or generally any attractions at all in DHS considering the hefty cost of 1-day base admission to the park. Since the announcement of the two new themed lands coming to the DHS, many areas, experiences, and attractions have closed to make room for construction, forcing longer waits for the remaining E-ticket attractions like ToT and RnRC.
DHS has become a half-day park and although Animal Kingdom does have their evening experiences, it will not be considered a full-day park until Pandora opens to park goers. The trickle down effect only have two full day parks and two half-day parks is that out-of-towners will spend less time in Disney and spend the remainder of their trip at Universal, which is quickly becoming a multi-day park experience.