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Armageddon Special Effects at Walt Disney StudiosLast updated by Adam on Wednesday, November 06, 2013 17:39
Submitted by Nick on Tuesday, June 05, 2012 12:51
Key informationOur rating:
Walt Disney Studios
Based around Bruce Willis’ 1998 disaster movie Armageddon, Armageddon: Les Effets Speciaux is designed to offer an insight into how the special effects for such movies are produced. Guests are taken through in groups of around 170, with two pre-show areas being used to stagger their progress through the attraction.
The pre-show sets the scene for the main show, with guests being joined by both a live host and by Michael Clarke Duncan (who played the character of Bear in the movie) via video. Guests discover that they are about to take part in the “filming” of a scene set on Space Station Mir, which is in the path of a meteor that is on a collision course with Earth.
Guests then move into the main area, which recreates the inside of Mir. A number of special effects are used to create a sense of being caught up in the movie’s action, including flickering lights, raining meteorites outside the “windows”, burning gas and a large explosion.Review:
Armageddon: Les Effets Speciaux is Walt Disney Studios’ only real attempt to create a “behind-the-scenes” attraction similar to those on offer at Universal Studios parks around the world. Unfortunately, Disney is yet to master these walkthrough experiences, and the end result is fairly underwhelming.
The problem is not really the main show itself, which is suitably impressive. Instead, it’s the 15-minute-plus wait to reach it. You’re likely to spend time waiting around outside the pre-show area, then inside it. The pre-show itself is predictable stuff, and you’ll learn relatively little about the actual art of special effects production (not least because the attraction is based on a film that was already 4 years old at the time Walt Disney Studios opened).
The attraction is showing its age in more ways than one, and is prone to frequent malfunctions – very frustrating when you’ve been waiting for 30 minutes or more to get to the final section. It’s probably time for Disney to overhaul it with a new theme, but in the meantime don’t make it a priority during your visit to the park.Top Tip:
Queues for Armageddon: Les Effets Speciaux can grow lengthy fairly early in the day. Don’t waste the hour immediately after the park opens on this inferior offering – your time will be better spent on Crush’s Coaster, Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster or The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror. Instead, wait until the hour before park closes to experience it.
Upcoming refurbishments, rehabs and closures
We are not aware of any scheduled refurbishment periods for Armageddon Special Effects. Do you know of any upcoming "rehabs" that we're missing? If so - please contact us so that we can keep the list up-to-date.