Biggest crowds bring out the best (temporary) changes

News flash: It's crowded at Walt Disney World during Christmas week.

I know, this is a real truth bomb and while the parks will be packed, the good news is Disney's Hollywood Studios management is planning something new this year to help spread the crowds around by opening up Sounds Dangerous to showcase Comedy Warehouse acts.  This is the second year in a row the Christmas crowds have forced management to think outside of the box. And I like it.

Last year the Premiere Theater was used to screen showings of "Mickey's Christmas Carol" during Christmas week.  Both this and the Comedy Warehouse plans are things that have never been done before in the Studios and it's definitely a step in the right direction.  The reason why these ideas even happen is to help handle the crowds.  To Disney, they see the number of attractions as simple math: more attractions equals less guests waiting around.  Last year, Sounds Dangerous and Star Tours were closed.  This year, Sounds Dangerous and Journey into Narnia are closed.  The math doesn't care about quality of attractions, there's just the simple fact that there's less to do in Hollywood Studios.

I love the idea of the Studios doing something like this.  I don't really care much for the crowd spreading angle, but I just think as a Disney World fan that this is something plain cool.  Since the news broke on Sunday, I've seen nothing but uniformly positive comments on the idea.  These sort of interesting ideas are a welcome change and my only wish is that we'd see more of this during other times of the year.  

There's no doubt that Christmas week is the busiest week of the year but offering up similar crowd handling attractions during summer, Easter and other peak seasons would be a nice touch to the Studios.  They've hit home runs so far, let's see what other ideas management has cooked up.

Hollywood Studios management could have easily just opened up Sounds Dangerous, turned on the film projector and ran it for a few days in the hopes of luring in unsuspecting guests to experience a lackluster attraction.  But the Comedy Warehouse acts will draw many more guests (including this one) and add another notch to the Studios fictional belt of achievements.

I spoke with two Cast Members who were close to the cast that is expected to be part of these Comedy Warehouse shows and they are genuinely excited.  Hearing excitement from people who know a lot about what to expect has raised my expectations.  And based on last year's show at the Premiere Theater, I think someone(s) has the right idea about what to do when guests flood the Studios.

I'll be checking out these shows personally and encourage others to do so as well if you're in town that week.  And to Disney, I tip my hat to the team that had their hand in these ideas.  We're loving it.

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A regular look into Disney's Hollywood Studios, both past and present, with commentary and analysis from Matt Hochberg.


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Posted: Wednesday, December 07, 2011 by