The Magic of Disney Animation opened at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in November of 2003 in the Animation Courtyard. This is attraction is great for all ages and all families. It’s all indoors so it’s a great place to go when it’s really hot outside or raining.
When you enter, you will go to a small theater where you will watch a 9 minute movie about how animators create characters for the screen. Mushu, from Mulan, and a Disney Animator will explain the process in the film. After the film, you are taken to a large interactive area where you will learn more about drawing Disney characters. You can participate in the following areas:
- Animation Academy: Here you will learn from a Disney artist how to draw your own Disney character. You can take your drawing home as a free souvenir!
- The Sound Stage: Experience creating your own soundtrack by mixing music and sound effects to a Disney movie scene.
- Digital Ink and Paint: On a touchscreen, you can add color to a Disney animated movie sequence.
- You’re a Character: Answer questions with the help of Lumiere from Beauty and the Beast to find out what Disney character you’re most like.
- Animation Gallery: Walk through an outstanding display of awards, animation cells and props from Disney history.
- Character Meet and Greet: This is my favorite! Meet some of your favorite Disney characters at select times throughout the day. Check your times guide when you get to the park for more.
- Flash photography is not allowed, so make sure it’s off!
- Guests in wheelchairs can remain in their chair. Guests in ECVs must transfer to a wheelchair.
- If you have watched the movie and participated in the Animation Stations activities and want to return just to meet characters, enter through the gift shop (at the exit of the attraction) instead of going through the building again.
- Lilo and Stich, Mulan and Brother Bear were produced within the Magic of Disney Animation’s studios.
In 2003 they updated this attraction to it’s current state because Disney no longer created cartoons in this location. From 1989-November 2003, the opening video “Back to Neverland” featured Walter Cronkite and Robin Williams (below). It’s rumored that because of this video, Disney cast Robin Williams to be “Genie” in the 1992 movie Aladdin. Disney pays tribute to Back to Neverland in Aladdin when the genie is dressed just as Robin is, as a tourist, in the beginning of the Back to Neverland film.