Of all the parks at Walt Disney World, Disney’s Hollywood Studios has arguably changed the most since its opening in 1989. While originally intended to be both a functioning studio and destination for educating guests on the film industry, the park today is all about putting guests into the movies. So for today’s installment of Attraction Archaeology, we’re digging for relics from the Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show at Disney’s Hollywood Studios!
What Was the Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show?
The Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show debuted on May 5, 2005, at Disney’s Hollywood Studios back when the park was known as Disney-MGM Studios. The show was a duplicate of the Moteurs… Action! Stunt Show Spectacular from the Walt Disney Studios Park at Disneyland Paris. It was brought to the Walt Disney World Resort as part of the Happiest Celebration on Earth promotion where each of the parks received their own attractions from other Disney Parks.
For the show, guests were seated in a massive 3,000 seat outdoor stadium with a French-inspired set which sat in the Backlot area of the park. Due to its significant size, the Studio Backlot Tour attraction was shortened and adjusted to work around the stadium.
During the show, guests watched multiple action-packed stunt sequences featuring cars, jet skis, motorcycles, and an explosion or two. In between stunts, guests re-watched the the stunt sequences but from multiple camera angles on huge billboard screens. Guests also learned just how such stunts were accomplished. For instance, after guests witnessed a car make a backwards jump off of a ramp, the car is then revealed to have a wheel and driver in the trunk of the car facing out the back.
Along with the backwards jump, other stunts included a “ballet chase” where a car was pursued by several other cars, as well as other jumps off of ramps, a motorcycle and jet ski chase, and even a sequence where a stuntman wearing treated clothing is set ablaze.
While the car chases and explosions were entertaining, the time in-between stunts caused the show to lag. Also, despite character appearances from Herbie the Love Bug and later Lightning McQueen from Cars, the stunts performed were not from a specific film. Now the Cast Members pretended as if they were actually filming, but this was only for show. The stunts being showcased were simply demonstrations and explanations of what audiences might see in an action film.
Why Did It Close?
The Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show and the nearby Streets of America closed in April of 2016 to make way for Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.
Where Can You Find Remnants of the Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show Today?
Even though this high-octane stunt spectacular closed in 2016, the park offers several relics and tributes from the show to discover throughout the park today!
Surprisingly, the first relic of this attraction isn’t anywhere near where it once stood! To find it, you will need to head down Sunset Boulevard. Look for the bathroom area between the Once Upon a Time and Legends of Hollywood stores. There’s usually a pressed penny machine nearby which still offers Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show penny designs. Even though you can no longer experience the show, you can still get a souvenir.
Over at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, there is a fitting tribute to the show since it used to call this corner of the park home. When walking through the marketplace of Batuu, look for three small vehicles between shop entrances. The green hoverbike in the middle sports three Aurebesh letters which in English translate to LMA. This, of course, stands for Lights, Motors, Action!
While I enjoy what the Disney Parks have to offer now, I also enjoy discovering relics and tributes to the magic and memories that came before and their presence in the parks today. Did you ever see the Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show? If so, please share your experiences!