The Chaos that is Hollywood Studios

As a huge WDW fan, I’m shocked to be making this claim. Hollywood Studios is a horrible, disorganized mess. I am so excited Galaxy’s Edge will be coming in, and at the same time, so completely disappointed that it will be at HS. I honestly think the whole thing needs bulldozed, and start over.

3 main areas of chaos:

  1. intersecting, crossing lines of traffic. For example, The FP+ line for Tower of Terror stretches back, and intersects with the exit for Tower of Terror, which further insects with the line for the food cart that is in that area. The general “T” layout of the park means you can’t go anywhere without intersecting and cross against the flow of some other traffic pattern. During training of the Jedi events, you have to squeeze your way through to get the queue entrance for Star Wars. The Star Wars theater and character meet and greet are 20 minutes away from the ride for some odd reason. The standby queue for ToyStory ride also crosses over the exit for ToyStory ride. When Fantasmic ends, all those people are heading out of the park, only to find no where to go, due to the people standing waiting for the Star Wars show. All this and we were there on a Park attendance day 3/10. It was our least favorite day/experience.

  2. Least likable food choices of all of WDW. The best food option for this park, is to go somewhere else. (Brown Derby is the notable exception, but also very pricey).

  3. Park closing parking lot. OMG. The single most thing that will quickly steal your “magical day” is the park closing at HS. We were using Disney transportation, and it was horrible. Leave early. No night-time show is worth that aggravation.

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Not impressed then?!

The Star Wars stuff is spread out just now. The Launch Bay (which is what I assume you mean by the Star Wars theatre) is in the old Animation Courtyard.

Since it started changing direction and construction started on both new lands, it is a mess. But nothing is more than 15-20 minutes walk from anything else, which is a bonus.

As for exiting Fantasmic, easy for me to say now, but what you could have done was wait 10 minutes, then head over to the exit to the right of the “stage” and that takes you straight out the back way. That way the exit is staggered between the Fantasmic crowd and the Star Wars crowd.

The transport thing is all to do with the fact there’s only one form of transport now. Buses! The boats aren’t running so everyone is headed for the buses or cars.

At least at Epcot there’s the monorail which takes a fair number of people leaving a separate exit to those going for buses or cars. And there’s two exits of course. MK has boats, monorail and buses. But park closing is always a cluster, that’s what happens when lots of people exit a park all at once.

The best thing to do is to wait, shop, walk around until it dies down.


I will agree with you on the parking lot right now. An absolute mess. The buses do not have their separate exit like the other parks, so they get stuck in the traffic. However, we never had any trouble navigating the park, at least not any worse than the other parks. And as stated above, there is a second exit that leads closer to the park exit from Fantasmic. We enjoy Sci Fi, so that’s a food option that works for us. I don’t think HS was ever food heavy like Epcot is though. That being said, if I had a one day ticket, I would not recommend visiting HS, as there is just too much construction. We enjoy the park and would only do it when at DW for multiple days.

I feel it will take time.

Of course, there was a time that HS was one of our favorites. But it seems to have lost it’s way through the years. Now, I can see that there is a direction, but it will take time to get there.

ToT, RnRC, ST, Backlot Tour, Honey I Shrunk the Kids play area, The Great Movie Ride. These things made the park totally worth it. But then they shrunk the Backlot tour to be kind of pointless, and removed the play area, and now the Great Movie Ride is no more.

I do think that HS suffers from the problem that Universal Islands of Adventure does…it was designed almost to be an after thought of the main event: Magic Kingdom. As a result, neither Universal nor Hollywood Studios was designed to handle the magnitude of crowds that today pour through them.

I’m not totally convinced the opening of SWGE will help a LOT, but it will help some. This is because I believe it will really only ADD two new rides to the mix. This is an improvement, but not a lot.

What SWGE will add more than anything is a Disney equivalent to Diagon Alley at Universal. The attention to detail, etc., will give Disney something that it has never had before in terms of a level of immersiveness. My biggest concern is that, like Diagon Alley and Hogsmeade, the amount of walkable land they are providing for that immersiveness will be insufficient and will lead to crowds that inhibit the ability to enjoy it. Star Wars is a legacy that spans generations far moreso than Harry Potter does. As such, I fully expect the crowds to be ginormous!

Anyhow, for the short term, HS is a mess…and yet, we fully enjoyed ourselves last time we were there. In a half a day, we get to have a great time and then are able to relax back at our lodging. Once SWGE opens, it will return to a full-day park. At which point, we’ll be anticipating the revitalization of Epcot! :slight_smile:

I’m with OP. HS right now is a no-go for us. We skipped it in April and didn’t miss it at all, really.

I’m concerned as to when it will be enjoyable again. I’m excited for TSL and hoping to catch it on a passholder preview in late June before the official opening. But I’m not at all a SW fan and with a whole SW land opening in addition to what’s already there — and the crowds that will draw — I’m not excited to go back there for the foreseeable future. I’m sure I will for my husband’s sake, as he is a SW fan, but I won’t be excited about it. I much prefer adding an additional EP day and taking our time going through that park.

That was my kids least favorite park. They are not big Star Wars fans, but enjoyed Star Tours. I liked it bc there wasn’t as much walking and I liked the ambience, but it wasn’t very crowded while we were there. We’ll see how it is in November, but thanks for the heads up on the craziness. My kids think they are brave enough to try rock n rollercoaster this time. And we loved TSMM.

I am actually quite worried that we will not enjoy our HS day at all this time around. I feel like it is going to be total chaos because of TSL and that will really take away from the enjoyment. At this point we are really only planning a half day there and then we may go back for the Star Wars Fireworks in the evening. Dh is convinced we need to do it though.

I’ve scheduled four and a half hours there. My schedule is TOT (FPP) — RNR (FPP) — TSMM — SDD (FPP) — HBD.

There’s nothing else I particularly want to do there. I’m not really into Star Wars but when Star Wars Land opens, I’ll obviously want to have a look. I’d probably love to stay in the hotel, too, but as it will cost a zillion, zillion dollars per night, I probably won’t be staying there.

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There is also Star Tours, which is a must-do ride to me (although, admittedly the recent updates to it aren’t as charming as the original rendition).

Also, whether you are a Star Wars fan or not, seeing the show and the march of the Storm Troopers is pretty surreal. I actually got a disturbing sense that the New Order has really taken over and they are ready and willing to march right on top of you if you get in their way.

And, of course, the little 10 minute film they played in the Launch Bay 2 1/2 years ago literally brought me to tears…but I think that would only happen for a true Star Wars fan. Which, of course, I am, particularly of the original trilogy and the new trilogy. (Forget the prequels. They are junk.)

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Pre SWL - its a perfect half-day park. We will be at WDW in 9 days and I am using HS for our arrival day with FP+ to RnR; ST; and ToT. Plan to standby line for TSMM. Dinner at 50s Prime Time and then done and back to the hotel to rest-up for RD at MK on our first full day.

That’s the one ride I won’t risk because of a fear of motion sickness.

Ah. Well, Star Tours never threatened me with motion sickness, but I’ve read from others who have, so I can see playing it safe rather than sorry. Carry on.

That’s the only ride I cannot do in WDW.

We had nothing to compare it to, but based on everything I read ahead of time, we led off with it being our first park for roughly 1/2 a day. My family wasn’t interested in any shows, just rides. We were lucky to have FPP for TSMM, Tower and Star Tours, and were able to do standby for RnRC, and an extra Star Tours and extra Tower. All by 12:30. Had lunch at 50s and left. But…while we were not overly impressed with the park, the fact was, RnRC and Tower were 2 of our favorite rides for the whole WDW. So (and especially easy since we stayed at BW and had hoppers), we ended up back 2 or 3 nights after 8pm, just to do those rides. So, I agree overall about the park, but still drawn to it for specific rides.

Did you go on mission space? I was fine on Star Tours, but Was too nervous with either mission space.

Green: yes. Orange: no. I wouldn’t risk it.

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Hmm, maybe we’ll try green next time.

What’s your concern? I don’t remember it being remotely problematic. Maybe a bit claustrophobic.

I can handle most rides — nothing at UOR caused me problems, despite them having loads of simulators.

I avoid Star Tours because I remember the one in DLP making me feel a bit queasy years ago.

And I’m not sure MS: Orange is worth the risk. MS: Green is not that great a ride. MS: Orange is the same thing, but with motion sickness thrown in.


I get vertigo. But I realized I’m ok on like fOP or rollercoaster, but dumbo or magic carpet that goes around and around, and especially something that spins :face_vomiting: I just didn’t want to chance it bc one day watching video games with my son I ended up in the ER. It was totally bizarre.

Mission Space Green is totally manageable