Lights, Motors, Action! Extreme Stunt Show
by Kevin Klose
Being one of the luckiest guys around, I was invited to attend the press event being held to kick off Disney’s “Happiest Celebration on Earth” in honor of Disneyland’s 50 th anniversary. The event is being held May 4 – 5 th and encompasses three theme parks (MGM, Magic Kingdom and Epcot)
In holding this event, Disney allows the press to experience all that is new in each park in hopes that it will get written about in newspapers and magazines, talked about on radio and television and sold by travel professionals.
As a way of making this a global celebration, some of the newest and best rides and shows are being shared with other parks.. Walt Disney World has gotten Cinderellabration from the Disney Resort in Tokyo, Soarin” from Disney’s California Adventure and Lights! Motors! Action! (To be referred to as LMA for the rest of the article) from Disney MGM Studios in Paris.
One of the highlights of this event is the premier of LMA. This attraction is at Disney-MGM Studios and resides where part of the back lot tour used to be.
On Wednesday, May 4 th, Lights! Motors! Action! received it’s official dedication and opening. Beginning Thursday, May 5 th, it will be open to the general public.
Before I get ahead of myself, let me tell you about the dedication. As the press gathered in front of the huge marquee for this attraction, a trio of large, loud, screaming motorcycles came racing around the corner and stopped on a dime announcing that the festivities had begun.
All Weiss, President of Walt Disney World was introduced and said a few words about the attraction being brought over from Paris. He explained the meaning of the Happiest Celebration on Earth and went on to tell us that Walt Disney World was happy to announce a new corporate sponsor, Georgia Pacific. The specific Georgia Pacific product sponsoring LMA is Brawny Paper Towels.
Mr. Weiss introduced an executive from Georgia Pacific who stated that they were very happy to be part of the Walt Disney World family. He in turn introduced NASCAR great, Kyle Petty. The three gentlemen chatted and asked for champagne to toast the opening. As a Disney Cast Member brought the champagne, he “tripped” (obviously planned), spilling the champagne. The executive from Georgia Pacific told him not to worry as he had brought the paper towels. With that done, the dedication ceremony was complete.
There were some minor fireworks from the top of the façade and we were ushered into the LMA stadium.
The venue for LMA can only be described as a stadium. This attraction is destined to be very popular and there was obviously a great deal of thought given to the amount of seating necessary. If I were to tell you the number of available seats, it would be just a guess. Suffice to say there are many. Actually, there are many manys. This is a big place.
I want to let you know a couple of things about seating. First, the handicapped accessible seats are about half way up the stadium and are accessible by elevator. Second, there does not seem to be a bad seat in the entire place. Other then some small poles supporting lighting and fans, there are no obstructions and with the staging area being so large, these are not really a consideration. Third….and those who need to know this information will know what I am talking about….this stadium is very large and very steep with a lot of stair climbing. If you do not like heights, choose a seat in the lower portion of the stadium. As I said….there isn’t a bad seat.
With that out of the way, let me tell you about the show. It is a SPECTACULAR. The premise of the show is that you are watching a movie crew film stunts involving cars, motorcycles, trucks and water craft. There is a large screen for playing back that which has just been filmed. Simple right? Wrong!!!!!
As an invited guest for the press event, we got a slightly expanded version of the show. Robby Knievel (Evel’s son) introduced the show and famous action heros were driven in tricked out convertibles. There was Mr. and Mrs. Incredible from The Incredibles, Luke and Princess Leia from Star Wars, Indiana Jones and Marian, Buzz and Woody from Toy Story, the New Power Rangers and finally, the “greatest action figure of all time”…..Goofy.
With that done, the show began. There are similarities to the Indiana Jones Stunt show in LMA. It’s a “live” set. There is an on site Director and his assistant that explains what is happening. Even the set, a representation of a coastal town in Southern France, is reminiscent of the Indy Show. With the Indy Stunt show, there is the good chance that the plot and goings on are familiar to many people, but that is where the similarity ends. As LMA is not taken from another medium, there is no preconceived notion of what will be happening and that’s a good thing.
I could go ahead and tell you of the stunts , tricks and amazing feats performed as part of this show, but in doing that, I feel I would be doing you a disservice.. What is performed in each show is unique enough to keep this jaded theme park enthusiast on the edge of his seat. I think we have become technologically savvy enough to be hard to impress. The group I was with found this to more than just impressive; it was impressive and unexpected which in turn made it very, very entertaining.
This show is one BIG success and is going to remain popular for quite a while, but with the enormous seating capacity, the waiting times should not be all that horrible.
Go and enjoy Lights! Motors! Action!
I guess that name is a take off on that old movie line …. Lights! Camera! Action!.... it’s a clunker to say, but don’t let that stop you.
This is one you wont want to miss.