Captain EO Tribute

Back in 1986 when it opened for the first time at Disneyland, Captain EO was the most "Hollywood" attraction ever done for the park. The George Lucas-produced and Francis Ford Coppola-directed short film starred Michael Jackson at the peak of his popularity. It was also one of the first 4-D theme park attractions where in-theater effects were combined with a 3-D movie.

In the film, Michael Jackson plays Captain EO. He and his crew are captured by the Supreme Leader (Anjelica Huston) and sentence to years of torture. Captain EO, however, uses the power of music to reveal the good within them, saving the day.

Captain Eo eventually played at all four of the Disney resorts that existed during its run but quickly came to be seen as out-dated and the show closed at Disneyland in 1997 (to be replaced by Honey, I Shrunk the Audience) and was gone from all the resorts by 1998. After the sudden death of Michael Jackson in 2009, periodic calls for an at least temporary return of the show were heard by and nostalgia for something even older was enough to bring the show back, pushing out the now outdated Honey, I Shrunk the Audience. However, while the show is a fully restored 70mm print, several special effects from the original show are no longer present and new effects (such as a shaking floor) make use of technology installed for Honey, I Shrunk the Audience.

General Information - Hide Section
  • Location: On the right side of Tomorrowland (when entering from Main Street), beyond Star Tours and Star Traders.
  • Date Opened: February 23, 2010
  • # of Ride Units: 1 theater
  • Ride Capacity: 575 people per show.
  • Restraint Method: None
  • Ticket Rating: C Ticket
  • Ride Photo: No
Time Commitment Information - Hide Section
  • Open/Close: Park hours
  • Wait Times: Generally there'll be no need to wait longer than one show to get in.
  • Length of Ride: 17 minutes
  • FastPass: No
  • Single Rider: No
  • Queue Description: Waiting area outside the theater.
Access Information - Hide Section
  • Health Restriction: None
  • Ride Access: The theater is wheelchair and ECV accessible with designated seating areas.
  • Wheelchair Transfer: Not necessary.
  • Service Animals: Yes
  • Audio: Assistive listening devices are available at guest relations. Reflective captioning devices are available from cast members at the theater.
  • Weight and Size Issues: None.
Parenting Information - Hide Section
  • Height Restriction: None
  • Child Swap: No
  • Other Issues: Parts of the show are loud and it is a show that tries to take full advantage of 3-D and regularly "throws" things at the audience.
History and Trivia - Hide Section

At this Location

This area of Tomorrowland was first put into use in 1961, though you'd never recognize it. At that time, the Flying Saucers attraction opened. Flying Saucers was a high-tech version of bumper cars as riders moved around on air cushions. The saucers never worked as well as hoped and the ride only lasted five years and with the New Tomorrowland of 1967 the area was converted into the Tomorrowland Stage, a 1,100 seat outdoor theater that played host to many acts and performers over the years. When Space Mountain opened in 1977, the stage was renamed Space Stage and built into the base of the mountain. In 1985, Space Stage closed for construction of the Magic Eye Theater, to be home for the new Michael Jackson 3-D film Captain EO. The theater opened before the film was ready and initially showed the Magic Journeys film from Walt Disney World and Captain EO moved in later that year. After a bit more than 10 years, the film was quietly pulled as part of the New Tomorrowland redesign and the theater closed to reopen as Honey, I Shrunk the Audience. That "4-D" show lasted about 12 years before the sudden death of Michael Jackson in 2009 revived interest in the Captain EO show, causing it to be put back in place in 2010.

Links of Interest - Hide Section

MousePlanet Links

  • Captain EO Returns — Adrienne Vincent-Phoenix covers the return of Captain EO to Disneyland. (March 1, 2010)

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