Following in the footsteps of its 3D predecessor Magic Journeys, Captain EO opened at Epcot’s Imagination Pavilion in September of 1986. Often dubbed a 4D experience, Captain EO used in-theater effects such as lasers, smoke and lighting effects.
Starring Michael Jackson as Captain EO, Anjelica Houston as the Supreme Leader and produced by George Lucas, the film cost an estimated $30 million to produce. It featured two original songs: “We Are Here to Change the World” and “Another Part of Me” which was later featured on Jackson’s “Bad” album.
EO and his ragtag crew are sent to deliver a gift to the Supreme Leader on an alien planet. After a crash landing, they are captured. EO is sentenced to 100 years of torture while his crew is sentenced to be turned into trash cans. Before the sentence is carried out, EO tells the Supreme Leader that he thinks she has beauty within that simply needs to be unlocked. After some difficulty getting the music going, EO is energized and able to turn the guards attempting to capture him into dancers who move in time with him. EO then delivers the gift by way of transforming the Supreme Leader into a beautiful woman, and her planet, into paradise.
In July of 1994, in tandem with other changes being made to the Imagination pavilion, EO closed it’s doors at Epcot to be replaced with a new show, Honey I Shrunk the Audience.
After the death of Michael Jackson in June of 2009, it became rumored that the attraction would be brought back to each of its former locations (Epcot, Disneyland, Tokyo Disneyland and Disneyland Paris). Using the original film, sans laser and smoke effects, as well as the hydraulic effects from Honey I Shrunk the Audience that allowed the theater floor to move, Captain EO re-opened at Epcot in July of 2010. After over 5-years of additional life, the show officially closed it’s doors on December 6, 2015.