Fantasmic! is the nighttime fireworks and more show at Disney Hollywood Studios. It's one of the top attractions in the park. It's located in a theater on the street that leads to the Tower of Terror and Rock-n-Roller Coaster.
This is the most imaginative of the Disney World fireworks show. It's based on the classic Disney movie Fantasmic!. Mickey is the star of this show. Mickey (not Donald like in Mickey's Philharmagic) directs a symphony of music, lights, characters, water and especially fireworks.
Fantasmic! at Disney Hollywood Studios
Photo by Disney Photo Snapper
Fantasmic! is shown in Hollywood Hills Amphitheater which is located on Sunset Boulevard. The theater seats around 7,500 with additional standing room only of 2,000 or so. The line starts forming more than an hour before the scheduled show.
Inside the theater, the best seats (front right and center) are reserved for those guests that have a dinner package. It's a bit frustrating to arrive to a packed theater and see a whole section with no one in it and not be able to get a seat. The dinner package guests are seated about 10 minutes before the show begins.
The Little Mermaid and Prince Eric
Photo by WDW Shutterbug
There isn't any preshow here. Sometimes the crowd will do things like the Wave or other crowd games. It can be fun just to watch the people filter in and fight for seats. Which brings me to a big point ...
Seats in the theater fill up very quickly. On most nights, you will need to be in line at least an hour prior to show time. Yes, I said an hour. And yes, you will have to wait in line unless you reserve a Fantasmic! Dinner Package.
Photo by WDW Shutterbug
Reserved seating is available to those guests that reserve the Dinner Package. To reserve a Dinner Package you choose from one of three restaurants -
- Hollywood Brown Derby
- Mama Melrose's Ristorante Italiano
- Hollywood and Vine
There is no extra charge for the Dinner Package. When you arrive at the restaurant you will be issued pass to get in at the special Dinner Package gate. (You need to arrive 30 minutes prior to show time.)
Is the reserved seating worth it? Mmmm? You get to sit in prime seats. You get a reserved seat without waiting an hour in line. So Dad's answer is, if you are can get a Fantasmic! Dinner Package do it!
Photo by WDW Shutterbug
Here is the show in a nutshell.
The narrator talks, the lights dim, Mickey comes out and starts the water and the the The Lion King and a bunch of other Disney movies are shown on the water screens. The lights go out, a canon fires and a battle ensues between Governor John Ratcliffe and his men and Native American. John Smith climbs up the mountain and Pocahontas appears. The water reappears and dancing scenes from several movies are shown.
The music turns dark and the villains arrive. Villains from almost all of the classic Disney movies are shown on the water screens, Maleficent turns into a 40 foot long fire-breathing dragon. Mickey pulls out the sword out of the stone and slays the dragon.
Fireworks begin popping all around. The characters show up in a big steamboat. Some more explosions happen. Mickey keeps disappearing and reappearing in a cloud of smoke and light. The lights come up and the show is over.
Glow with the Show
In 2013 Disney introduced "Glow with the Show". It's a way that guests can interact with the nighttime shows in the parks. Guest can now purchase special Glow with the Show" hats that have Mickey ears that blink different colors in tune with the music and themes of the show.
Video from the show
Here's some video from the show withg the Glow With the Show Ears.
Here are some interesting tidbits -
- It's estimated that each show costs $30,000.00.
- The water screens pump 2,400 gallons of water a minute into the air. A total of over 1 million gallons per show.
Fantasmic! made the long trek from Disneyland to Walt Disney World in October of 1998.
- The original show in Disneyland started in 1992.
Dad's Attraction Information Table
|Description: The nighttime entertainment show with fireworks|
|Height Requirement - none||FastPass:no||Length of show: 25 minutes|
|Type of ride: Show full of fireworks, characters and music|
Other Information: This show has some villains in it, along with loud noises. It can be disturbing for some small children.
Dad's Bottom Line
Fantasmic! has a lot of fans. Many Disney Hollywood Studios guests think it's the best of the 3 firework presentations. The drawbacks are, it's shown in a small area (compared to Wishes, and Illuminations), and even though it's shown every night the lines are pretty long and if you don't get in line early you might not get in.
Even with all the drawbacks it's a not to be missed show.