Disney’s Hollywood Studios
Hollywood Studios is a theme park at the Disney World resort in the Orlando, FL area. The park covers 135 acres and is dedicated to the worlds of film, animation, music, and theater. The Chinese Theater is currently the centerpiece of Hollywood Studios. Hollywood Studios is also the future home to Star Wars Land, which is perhaps the most heavily anticipated expansion to the Disney World theme parks in decades.
Hollywood Studios History
Hollywood Studios got off to a rough start. The theme park opened in 1989 and was originally themed Disney-MGM Studios Theme Park. The park was originally conceived as a half theme-park/half production studios venture. When the theme park opened, there were ONLY TWO RIDES!! The rides were the Studio Backlot Tour and the Great Movie Ride. Not only was the park boring, but Disney got embroiled in some legal matters with MGM studios. Eventually Disney distanced themselves from the production side of things and focused on the magic of Hollywood and movies. They officially changed the name to Hollywood Studios, though you’ll still occasionally hear someone refer to it as “MGM studios”. Many additions and expansions have been made through the years, as Hollywood Studios has become one of the biggest and most visited theme parks in the world.
Hollywood Studios Areas
There are 6 main areas in Hollywood Studios:
Hollywood Boulevard - This is essentially the “Main Street USA” version of the park. There are Hollywood-inspired gift shops and architecture and this boulevard leads you to the big open area in front of the Chinese Theater. From this area, you can get to the other 5 sections of the park.
Echo Lake - This isn’t a commonly used name, but is the official name of one of the sections of the park. The architecture is Hollywood-inspired. A large theater that houses Frozen: A Sing-Along Celebration is right in the middle of Echo Lake. Star Tours and the Indiana Jones stunt show are also in this section of the park.
Grand Avenue - This part of the park is designed around a historic district of Los Angeles with the same name. This is a rather small part of Hollywood Studios. It has 3 restaurants and the Muppet Vision 3D show. Grand Avenue is also going to have the tunnel that leads to Star Wars: Galaxy Edge.
Toy Story Land - This is the newest area of Hollywood Studios. This area is inspired by the Toy Story series and has 3 rides included. Toy Story Mania, an old favorite, is joined by Alien Swirling Saucers and Slinky Dog Dash, a roller coaster. This part of the park is brand new, having just opened in 2018.
Animation Courtyard - Animation Courtyard is an area that houses many shows, exhibits and films from the world of animation. Star Wars Launch Bay is in this area, as is the Disney Junior Dance Party and the Voyage of the Little Mermaid.
Sunset Boulevard - Sunset Boulevard is inspired by the street with the same name in California. There are three huge attractions in this part of the park. Tower of Terror, Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster and Fantasmic, the nighttime show. This street also has some excellent ice cream and dessert shops!
Star Wars : Galaxy’s Edge - The 7th land in the park is scheduled to open in late 2019.
Hollywood Studios Rides
Hollywood Studios has over 13 rides and attractions that guests can choose from. For an overview of what you can expect to find, please see our article Hollywood Studios Rides & Attractions.
Hollywood Studios Restaurants
The Animal Kingdom has 5 table-service restaurants that you can choose from:
Hollywood Brown Derby - This is a restaurant that serves contemporary American cuisine, themed around the Golden Age of Hollywood.
50’s Prime Time Cafe - This table-service restaurant is all about comfort food. Fried chicken, mashed potatoes, roast beef…it’s like you’re walking into mama’s kitchen.
Hollywood & Vine - This is a buffet restaurant for breakfast, lunch and dinner. If you get a breakfast reservation, you can dine with Disney Junior Characters.
Mama Melrose’s Ristorante Italiano - This is a casual Italian restaurant with a California twist.
Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater Restaurant - You can eat your meal in a 50’s style car while watching a “drive-in” Sci-fi movie on the big screen.
Hollywood Studios Map
For a larger version of the Hollywood Studios Map, please click the image.
Hollywood Studios Touring Plan
Hollywood Studios is very unique. There are only 7 rides, they are all very good, and they all stay very busy. If you want to stay out of long lines, please read our one-day Hollywood Studios touring plan. This free plan will be updated once Star Wars Land comes out.
Hollywood Studios Fastpass Strategy
Hollywood Studios guests get 3 fastpasses a day. In this park, the fastpasses are broken up into two different tiers. You can only choose one fastpass from Tier 1, and 2 from Tier 2. If you want to get the best fastpasses, you need to book as early as possible. What times should you choose? Which fastpasses should you try to get? We have you covered with our article: Hollywood Studios Fastpass Strategy. If you combine this article with our touring guide, you’ll fly through this amazing park.