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Lost Projects: Mickey's Movieland

There's never a shortage of ideas at Disney Imagineering but for many reasons, some projects never make it into production and this week, we're going to look at one such project that was proposed as part of an expansion at the Disney-MGM Studios, but was ultmately never built.

Following the opening of the Disney-MGM Studios in 1989, park officials quickly realized the popularity of the park dictated that the Studios needed to be expanded.  Remember that in the first few years of the Studios operation, the entire Backlot area was closed off to guests and the public area was merely limited to Hollywood Boulevard and Echo Lake.  

The Project

An idea floated by Imagineers was to construct "Mickey's Movieland", a land that would be located where Sunset Boulevard is located today, was going to be housed inside a replica of the original Disney Studio from California.  The exterior was going to be a replica of the Studio from 2719 Hyperion Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90027, which was the address of the Walt Disney/Hyperion Studio in 1926 up until 1940.

Inside the building, there would be an attraction that showcased how Mickey Mouse cartoons were made, similar in nature to the Magic of Disney Animation attraction that we see today.  In addition, guests could view displays of animation equipment such as  the multiplane camera, animator's desk, ink & paint department (all of which is visible today in Walt Disney: One Man's Dream).

A Disney Crew publication in 1990 provided the following description:

“A replica of Disney’s original Hyperion Avenue Studio, where guests will encounter whimsical, hands-on movie making equipment where they can live out their own motion picture producing fantasies.”

Interestingly enough, this entire concept started off as an idea for a "Moviemaking" Pavilion at EPCOT Center by Imagineers Tim and Steve Kirk (with Ward Kimball consulting).  And just like the Great Movie Ride, it was deemed too large for Epcot and instead assigned as a possibility for the Disney-MGM Studios.

Why wasn't it built

The project had its merits but in the end, Disney decided to go with a different proposal Imagineering had come up with: a recreation of the theater district of Hollywood named Sunset Boulevard with a really amazing attraction concept called the Tower of Terror.


  1. The Florida Project
  2. Jim Hill Media
  3. socal theme park concepts
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