Captain EO Returns to Disneyland
Captain EO, the 3D film starring Michael Jackson which ran at Disneyland from 1986-1997, re-opened at Disneyland on Tuesday, February 23 as Captain EO Tribute.
In addition to Michael Jackson starring as the title character, the cast features Anjelica Huston as the Supreme Leader. It was produced by George Lucas and directed by Francis Ford Coppola. The 17-minute film features original songs and new Disney-created space characters with magical transformation powers, such as Hooter, Fuzzball, and Major and Minor Domo.
Captain EO is playing multiple times a day in Tomorrowland in the theater formerly occupied by Honey I Shrunk the Audience. Disney is saying it will be showing for a limited time, though there is no word on just how long that might be. According to Imagineer Tony Baxter, at this point there are no plans to bring it to Walt Disney World.
Jeanine Yamanaka attended the media event on Opening Day and shares some of her thoughts, photos, and interviews.
Guests began lining up outside the park the night before - there was a separate line for the EO crowd:
Once inside, there were signs directing guests back to Tomorrowland:
New signs on the entrance - those in the queue attended a showing for the Early Magic Morning crowd before the "official" first showing at 1000.
Captain EO cast members set up the queue for a busy day:
More new signs:
Disneyland president George Kalogridis was in attendance.
Two of the original performers from EO were there. Debbie Lee Carrington (middle) played Idy, half of the two-headed "Geex". Renee Colette (right) was a dancer in the film.
-- No photos or video were allowed during the movie.
-- The film uses a new 70mm print and the audio is great.
-- Some effects were new, like seat motion, but quite a few were missing, like the smoke, lasers, and starfield.
-- It will apparently be open until they notice a crowd drop-off, at which time they'll close it.
-- They have no plans for a replacement, since they don't know how long they'll have it open.
After the first show Jeanine had the opportunity for several interviews.
Imagineer Tony Baxter talks about bringing the movie back as well as its future:
Debbie Lee Carrington shares some of her experiences in making the movie:
Rick Rothschild, In-Theater Effects Director, on bringing Captain EO back:
New merchandise is available both with the classic Captain EO logo, and with the new Captain EO Tribute logo. In this clip, Merchandise Manager Cheryl Stockwell talks about some of the new merchandise:
An embroidered Captain EO nylon jacket will be available in mid-March.
Note: Captain EO merchandise is available only at Disneyland park, and is not available for purchase via Disneyland Merchandise Guest Services.