Terrific Tuesdays: Surprises on the Great Movie Ride

It is hilarious to me how one can visit Walt Disney World every year and still be surprised by the goings on in the parks. Each time my family visits, we ride all of our favorite rides at each park; sometimes more than once. One of our favorites at Disney’s Hollywood Studios is the Great Movie Ride. We are all movie buffs so we really enjoy cruising along in the tram viewing old movie scenes and animatronic figures from some of our favorites like Mary Poppins, Singin’ in the Rain, and the Wizard of Oz. And, even though we know that the gangster will hijack our vehicle, and we know just about every line of the script, we still enjoy it just the same.

Did you know, though, that there is another version of this ride? We didn’t.

If I had to guess how many times I have been on The Great Movie Ride, I would estimate the number to be somewhere between 15 and 20. During our trip last month, we rode it only to discover a “new” script – one involving a cowboy bandit robbing the western bank.  After we rode it, we all talked about how we liked it and wondered if they were going to change from the gangster script to the cowboy script. So, when I got back I decided to do a little research to find out if there were any rumors circulating about changing it. You can imagine my surprise when I realized that for at least the past 8 years they have been running dual scripts.

I can’t believe that out of all the times we have been on this ride, in all these years, we have always happened to get the gangster script. What are the odds? Well, I discovered a few things about the chances of seeing the cowboy bandit version vs. the gangster plot scenario and, of course, I am happy to share them with you:

  • The cowboy part isn’t always used. In fact, it is only used when the ride is extremely busy so if you go during slow times, you will likely see the gangster version.
  • When the park is busy, they load two sets of cars. The front cars stop in the western scene (this scene is immediately ahead of the gangster scene), while the rear cars stop in the gangster scene.
  • Supposedly, if you request the cowboy bandit version, they will do that one for you.

Personally, we liked the bandit scene better. The bank blowing up makes it much more fun and interesting. The fact that we never even knew about it just goes to show you that there are surprises everywhere at Walt Disney World – even for the veteran visitor. If you have not seen this version of the ride, ask a CM during your next trip if they will do that one for you. Enjoy!

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Brenda is a native Texan born and raised on the Gulf Coast. She visited Disney World twice as a teenager and always dreamed of growing her family Disney. She took her first-timer husband and their three children to Disney World in 2000 and they now spend every Thanksgiving there. Brenda writes with a comedic twist on various Disney topics. She will be sharing tips she has learned during her travels and also hopes to enlighten people on little-known freebies that Disney has to offer. She wishes she could have met Walt Disney and considers herself to be a student of Walt. In parallel to his dream it is her wish that everyone would take at least one trip to Disney World in order to share in its magic with their families.

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4 Responses to Terrific Tuesdays: Surprises on the Great Movie Ride

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  3. Kelly says:

    My boys like the fire and I like both. I really love this ride!!

  4. Joanna says:

    Actually, the Western version is run year-round (not only during busy seasons). It may not run as often during slower times, but it is still run.

    Also, if you request the Western show and it’s not running that day for some reason, they won’t be able to do a show for you. However, if it’s running and you request it, they will get you on the next available vehicle (it may be a bit of a wait, but it will happen).

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