One of my favorite places to take a break at Disney’s Hollywood Studios is on the Studio Backlot Tour. While the show is far from calm, it progresses at a leisurely pace and is a sit-down attraction—something my feet really appreciate during those long Disney days!
The Tour begins at a special effects water tank demonstration. Guests are seated in a covered outdoor arena and are treated to the filming of a war scene. What’s extra fun is that four Guests are selected to participate in the action, and it is filmed, edited, and aired to wow the crowd before the tram ride begins.
Boarding the open-air, 200-seat tram, “tourists” trek in, around, and through backstage areas that are otherwise off-limits to visitors. It resembles studio tours that are offered on the backlots of real film production facilities in Hollywood, California, but of course, these offer up some plussed Disney magic! For only here will Guests see the Earful Tower and The Mouse—the very airplane Walt Disney used to scout locations for “the Florida Project,” and only here will they get an up close and personal thrill of impending disaster at Catastrophe Canyon, where the earth quakes, fire balls burst, and water floods the gorge as it rushes right toward the trams.
It’s a narrow escape, but the Tour does continue on to a walking tour of the American Film Institute Showcase and an exit showcasing one-of-a-kind treasures—props, costumes, and other items relating to special effects in motion pictures. Villains: Movie Characters You Love to Hate is the current exhibit and features props, drawings, and life-size figures from the Star Wars and Pirates of the Caribbean movies, and several others.
The water jets at Catastrophe Canyon are so powerful they could shoot a basketball over the Empire State Building OR fill 10 Olympic-sized swimming pools in a matter of seconds. That’s plussed power!
Today, view this fun Youtube and try the water and air experiments shown. You’ll need only simple household materials.
SCHOOL SUBJECT: Physics
SKILL LEVEL: Elementary, Middle Grades
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