Art of Disney Animation

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Art of Disney Animation
Walt Disney Studios Park
Area Toon Studio
Coordinates 48°52′2.22″N 2°46′42.67″E / 48.8672833°N 2.7785194°E / 48.8672833; 2.7785194Coordinates: 48°52′2.22″N 2°46′42.67″E / 48.8672833°N 2.7785194°E / 48.8672833; 2.7785194
Status Operating
Opening date 2002
Disney's California Adventure
Name Animation Academy
Area Hollywood Land
Status Operating
Opening date July 15, 2005
Hong Kong Disneyland
Name Art of Animation
Area Main Street U.S.A.
Status Operating
Opening date July 14, 2007
General statistics
Attraction type Walkthrough
Theme Disney and Pixar Animation

The Art of Disney Animation is an attraction at the Walt Disney Studios Park in Disneyland Paris, Disney's California Adventure in Disneyland Resort and Hong Kong Disneyland in Hong Kong Disneyland Resort. In Walt Disney Studios Park, the attraction opened in 2002, along with the park, and is located in the Toon Studios Area (previously known as Animation Courtyard). Toon Studios is where the animated characters come alive - here guests learn about how Disney animated movies are created and can step into the imaginary worlds of animated features from Disney and Pixar.[1]


The Art of Disney Animation allows guests to learn about classic Disney creations with the help of a Disney animator and Mushu, the mischievous dragon from Disney’s 1998 classic Mulan.[2] Through combining theatre presentations with interactive exhibits, the Art of Disney Animation takes guests on a trip from the historical world of classic Disney animation techniques to "the creation of modern-day Disney characters."[3] The iconic Sorcerer’s Hat is the perfect way to usher guests into the building and start this experience. Additionally, in front of the building near the wait area, there is a collection of golden statues of various Disney characters such as Mickey Mouse, Dumbo, Mulan and Donald Duck to name a few.[2]

After guests pass the outdoor wait area, they enter the pre-show room. "A colorful mural wraps around the left side of the room charting early animation inventions."[3] This room has on display an original multi-plane camera which was used in the animation process of Disney classic such as Bambi.[2] The attraction also displays other early animation inventions such as the Greek urn that date back to 500 BC as well as the Magic Lantern (1659) an early type of image projector, which was invented in the Netherlands.[2]

Other animation inventions include the English Thaumatrope (1825) which is "a disk or card with a picture on each side. The disc or card is attached to two strings on each side. When flipping the disc or card in a continuity movement from one side to the other, it looks like the two separate pictures merged into one single image."[2] The Phenakistoscope invented in Belgium in 1832 is "a vertical spinning disc with multiple drawings that gave the illusion of a moving picture once it was set in motion."[2] The Zoetrope (1834) is another English invention and "it is a cylinder with slits in the side." Inside the cylinder, a band with images is placed. Once the cylinder is set in motion an illusion of movement is created."[2] The last animation invention featured in this room is the French Praxinoscope (1877) which "improved on the Zoetrope by using an inner circle of mirrors that create a brighter and less crooked picture."[2]

After this exhibition pre-show, guests are taken to the Disney Classics Theatre which is a seated cinema is showing a collection great Disney and Pixar animated moments touching on Disney’s classic themes of love, loss and rebirth.[3] Guests are then moved on to the Drawn to Animation room, where they are welcomed by a Disney animator and their host Mushu, the dragon. Together they explain, how Disney creates its many beloved characters and "how they [bring] them to life on the big screen."[2] At the end of this presentation, guests are shown some scenes from the latest Disney or Pixar animation, the scenes obviously changing with the release of a new animated movie.[2]

Guests are then moved into the final and largest room of the attraction, which features a series of interactive "animation stations", where they can try out some of the things they had just seen on the tour.[2][3] Guests have the possibility of trying their hand at drawing Mickey Mouse with the help of an animator who explains the whole process. They can also draw their own Zoetrope animation on bands of paper and test the results on one of the devices. There is also a sound creation game and a voice over game, as well as many other fun stations to explore.[2]

For those who want to see a little bit more of Disney animation history, there is a display of concept art highlighting the design and creation of Disney’s classic films as well as statues displayed behind glass windows.[2][3] Lastly, a tip guests can keep in mind about this final room is that it can be entered without visiting the main attraction, allowing guests to return to view certain exhibits and take part in certain "animation stations" during their visit to the park.

Similar Attractions[edit]

The Magic of Disney Animation[edit]

The Magic of Disney Animation was a show and tour at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Florida. The attraction closed permanently on July 12, 2015. At the time, it was not announced what would happen to the building and the animators. In December 2015, the building began to be used to house the Star Wars Launch Bay.

Animation Academy[edit]

The Animation Academy has no main show, such as the one in the Paris and Florida attractions, but there are a variety of attractions and exhibits the guests can visit.[2]

These attractions are located at Hollywood Land which is a themed land at Disney California Adventure.[4] "The area is inspired by the 1930’s Golden Age period of Hollywood" and features attractions related to this concept. The Disney Animation Academy is where guests can get lessons on how to draw various Disney characters. As part of the park's "Frozen Fun" event, which ran though May 15, 2015, the Academy gave exclusive lessons on how to draw either Olaf or Marshmallow from Frozen.[5]

Other experiences at the Animation Academy include the Animation Courtyard. The area of the courtyard known as the Art of Animation Gallery is where guests can see some of the original artwork and the creative process from Disney and Pixar animated films, featuring scenery from the films as well as concept art of the characters.

Another attraction at the building is known as the Character Close-Up which, starting in late December 2014, features a meet and greet with Anna and Elsa from Frozen.

Other attractions include the Sorcerer’s Workshop and Turtle Talk with Crush.[2] The Sorcerer’s Workshop features the Magic Mirror Realm which features interactive animation exhibits and allows guests to create simple animated drawings.[6] Guests can figure out what "personality most resembles" them in the Beast’s Library. Lastly, guests can "gather 'round a window to the Pacific" for a live chat with Crush the turtle from Finding Nemo.[4]

Movies Featured in the Animation Reel[edit]

  1. The Little Mermaid
  2. Beauty and the Beast
  3. Fantasia & Fantasia 2000
  4. Bambi
  5. Finding Nemo
  6. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
  7. The Incredibles
  8. The Jungle Book
  9. Toy Story franchise
  10. Cinderella
  11. Mulan
  12. Monsters, Inc.
  13. Ratatouille
  14. Lilo & Stitch
  15. Tarzan
  16. Pinocchio
  17. Alice in Wonderland
  18. Up
  19. Lady and the Tramp
  20. Tangled
  21. Dumbo
  22. The Lion King
  23. Frozen
  24. Zootopia
  25. Cars
  26. Pocahontas
  27. Sleeping Beauty
  28. Aladdin
  29. Peter Pan
  30. When You Wish upon a Star featuring the Disney Princesses

Previous versions included Arabian Nights from Aladdin, Atlantis: The Lost Empire, Buster's introduction from Toy Story 2, Hercules, A Bug's Life, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, The Emperor's New Groove, & Maleficent's transformation from Sleeping Beauty.

Art of Animation[edit]

Hong Kong Disneyland is where Art of Animation is located. As part of the expansion of the park in summer 2008, the attraction replaced The Disneyland Story presenting How Mickey Mouse Came to Hong Kong.

Behold an exhibition of original Disney artwork and see how an early concept sketch can become an animated character inside the building. View drawings, sculptures, and rare collectibles from more than 80 years of beloved Disney and Pixar cartoons and animated feature films—and learn how Disney artists created and eventually brought to life of Disney characters.

A zoetrope is a device that flashes a series of still images to produce the illusion of motion. Instead of using traditional, one-dimensional drawings, Toy Story Zoetrope, similar to the former Character Close-Up in Disney Animation Building at Disney California Adventure. It features 3-dimensional figures of characters from the Disney•Pixar Toy Story film series—including Woody, Jessie, and Bullseye—to demonstrate how even sculptures can easily become fully animated in the eye of the beholder. As large disks whirl under a flashing strobe light, the Toy Story characters spring to life.

In 2012, since Magic Access Member Service Center (next to City Hall) was under construction, the center has temporarily moved to the building, replaced The Preview Gallery, while the Art of Animation is covered with a curtain whereas guests could enter and visit. However, the building has been temporarily suspended from September 21 to 30, 2016 and October 17 to 25, 2016 for transformation work. It has provided extra functions that serve the Magic Access Members. The old building was replaced by a Meet and Greet attraction known as The Annex.

In 5th anniversary celebration, "The Magic Continues" Preview Gallery was placed inside the building's golden age area, displaying the three new themed area Grizzly Gulch, Mystic Point and Toy Story Land, the expansions at the park. Later, the display had moved to Hong Kong Disneyland Hotel.

Due to its Monstrous Summer event in 2013, the building was converted into Monsters University Administration Building, in conjunction with the release of the film Monsters University.[7] It was ran from June 13, 2013. Although the event officially ended on September 1, it continued until October 31, part of the "Disney's Haunted Halloween" event starting from October 4. Due to its “Frozen” Village summer event in 2015, the building was converted into Inside Out Headquarters, in conjunction with the release of the film Inside Out.[8] It was ran from July 9, 2015. Although the event officially ended on August 30, its continued until September 14. The displays inside the building were all moved to Epcot Character Spot at Epcot since April 2016.[9]

In 10th anniversary celebration, half of the building (the renaissance age) has been converted into Big Hero 6 Headquarters, where guests can meet and greet with Baymax since February 22,[10] and Hiro Hamada only on June 4 as an atmosphere character.[11] However, it's been closed since June 30.


  1. ^ "Welcome in the Toon Studio". Disneyland Paris: Walt Disney Studios Guide. Retrieved March 29, 2014. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o "Art of Disney Animation". Disneyland Paris: Walt Disney Studios Guide. Retrieved March 29, 2014. 
  3. ^ a b c d e "Art of Disney Animation". DLRP Magic!. Retrieved April 1, 2014. 
  4. ^ a b "Animation Academy". Disney Parks & Travel. Retrieved April 1, 2014. 
  5. ^ Slater, Shawn (December 5, 2014). "New 'Frozen Fun' Opens at Disneyland Resort January 7". Disney Parks Blog. Retrieved December 22, 2014. 
  6. ^ "Sorcerer's Workshop". Disney Parks & Travel. Retrieved April 1, 2014. 
  7. ^ "Enrollment at Monsters University kicks off at Hong Kong Disneyland this Summer". 
  8. ^ "Disney•Pixar's "Inside Out" makes emotional debut in Hong Kong Disneyland". 
  9. ^ "Joy and Sadness to Join Baymax in Newly Expanded Epcot Character Spot". Disney Parks Blog. 
  10. ^ "Hong Kong Disneyland Resort debuts Broadway-style live show and new attractions to bring on festive cheer during the 10th Anniversary". 
  11. ^ "Hong Kong Disneyland 10th Anniversary". 

External links[edit]