Disney Confirms the Sorcerer’s Hat at Disney’s Hollywood Studios is History


The Orlando Business Journal has confirmed that Walt Disney World will be removing the iconic Sorcerer Mickey Hat in early 2015.

The Sorcerer’s Hat “opened” September 2001 as part of the 100 Years of Magic Celebration at Walt Disney World.


No word on what, if anything, will replace the hat.

Are you sorry to see the Sorcerer Hat go away?

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92 Replies to “Disney Confirms the Sorcerer’s Hat at Disney’s Hollywood Studios is History”

  1. Seems the majority agree it’s about time. Loved the view up the street and the whole “old Hollywood” feel of the park before the hat. It always looked awkward and out of place. I’m with those voting to move the hat. I actually liked it but just not the location. Also happy to hear TCM connection with Great Movie Ride. These people know classic film and should add immediately to the ride. and,yes get rid of the Alien stuff! Not all that well done and who cares about it. Not wanting to see Tarzan go though. Please don’t replace hat with anything and especially not Frozen stuff.

  2. I am glad to see the hat gon and back to the original view of Graumans Chinese Theater- after all it is Hollywood Studios. now if they would only bring back the fireworks show where at the end a huge inflateable Sorcer Mickey appeared with fireworks coming out of his finger.

  3. I am sad that the hat is no longer there. Although many adults may be happy, many children are not. As a child myself, I didn’t think about it blocking anything or ruining the scenery. I saw it as a magical part of Disney that every child admires and with out it there, I feel that a little magic has been taken away. I feel that Disney has not upheld its everyday promise of keeping the magic for the kids because it is too concerned about the parents and teens. Walt Disney himself only had his children in mind while imaging these parks and his main focus was not what would best suit the parents’ interests. I understand that the hat might not have been in the ideal location, but totally getting rid of the thing that was added to celebrate the “magic” of Disney is disappointing. I hope they truly believed this was the best path to take because I am not so sure.

  4. I have mixed feelings about the hat. Way back when we first vistied Hollywood Studious (still refer to it as MGM) I thought the hat blocked the nice looking Chinese theater. As time went on I grew accustomed to the hat and felt that to be the centerpiece of Hollywood Studios as is the Castle at MK and so on with the other parks.

    So I would say now I’m sorry to see it go but I do feel Disney will do a great job of catching your eye with something good. Whether it be a refreshed Chinese Theater or something else where the hat stood, time will tell.

  5. The hat should not have been taken down in my opinion. I was reading some of the comments up there and this one I strongly agree with:

    “I am not happy with this decision. All of the parks have their trademarks. Magic kingdom with Cinderella’s castle, Epcot with planet earth, animal kingdom with the tree of life, and Hollywood studios with the sorcerer hat. Ever since I was a little boy I have loved the hat and every time someone mentioned Hollywood studios I would think of the hat. The hat has everything to do with Disney, because the most Classic Disney movie The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, was the hats creator. No Imagineer would even think of disposing of the castle or spaceship earth, so why the hat? Would a theatre or nothing really be better then the sorcerer hat?”

    I thought that was perfectly worded and explained exactly what I was thinking. Taking down the ears was one of Disney’s biggest mistakes along with taking away the ride “Maelstrom”

  6. I’m happy to see the hat go. Before I ever visited the park, I saw a documentary on The Disney Channel, where the Chinese Theatre was described as “the castle at the end of Main Street.” My first visit to the park was in January of 1991, and I thought the effect was fantastic. Coming from Southern California, I was very familiar with the original Chinese Theatre, and I loved seeing Disney’s recreation looming at the end of Hollywood Boulevard. I was mortified when the Sorcerer’s Hat was erected, completely obscuring the Chinese Theatre. I have nothing against the Hat per se, I just didn’t like the placement.

  7. I liked the hat but as so often happens at Disney something that was meant as a celebration icon lasted for years and years.
    I do hope they DO NOT put anything up if front of the theatre and restore it back to the way the imagineers originally planned Hollywood Studios with a full view of the theatre.
    I always thought it looked out of place with all the other 30’s-40’s architecture. And let’s face it that hat was a pin station.
    Does anyone remember that the original icon was the water tower with the Mickey ears?
    So here’s hoping the streets of the Hollywood Studios will once again look like the streets of old Hollywood.

  8. ** Correction to my previous post:
    I apologize, I meant to say I am happy to see the hat go as the icon of the park. I think the Earful Tower is a better symbol.

  9. Not happy to see the hat go as the icon of the park, but I don’t think it should be torn down completely. Hopefully they will move it elsewhere. We were just there last week and noticed that most of the merchandise, t-shirts, mugs etc, have the earful tower as the icon for DHS and not the hat already.
    Excited and a little nervous for all the changes, won’t be back there until most of these changes have happened so thanks for keeping us updated!

  10. Addendum to my comment below:

    Well…there are definitely 2 camps on this topic. Those that are sad to see the hat go and those (like myself) that are glad to see it go. The problem is that for guests such as myself the return of the wonderful view of the Theater will probably be short-lived. It seems that they will be either putting something up in its place – which will once again block the view of the Theater – or, they will tear down The Great Movie Ride attraction altogether! It will more than likely become yet another Frozen attraction.

    ~ Johnny

  11. I am not happy with this decision. All of the parks have their trademarks. Magic kingdom with Cinderella’s castle, Epcot with planet earth, animal kingdom with the tree of life, and Hollywood studios with the sorcerer hat. Ever since I was a little boy I have loved the hat and every time someone mentioned Hollywood studios I would think of the hat. The hat has everything to do with Disney, because the most Classic Disney movie The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, was the hats creator. No Imagineer would even think of disposing of the castle or spaceship earth, so why the hat? Would a theatre or nothing really be better then the sorcerer hat?

  12. I have always liked the hat.. but, that is all I have ever known as it went up about the time I started going to WDW. That being said, it seems that most that say they don’t like it, actually don’t like the location. It really is appropriate theming for DHS. What I would like to see is moving the hat outside the front gates of DHS and using it for a Magic Band/FP+ station. It could easily preplace the kiosk that seems to have little of no business.

  13. Hi Deb –

    While I’ve gotten used to the Hat, I won’t be sad to see it go. 1993 was my first visit to Disney-MGM Studios. I miss the grandeur that the Chinese Theater added to complete Park’s “opening scene.” Couple that with the Sorcery In The Sky Fireworks which were launched behind the Castle, I mean Theater, well you get the gist. I hope Disney keeps the Plaza clear and doesn’t block the view with something else; remember the Armageddon movie prop? So here’s to the Earful Tower returning as the Park’s symbol, to serve as a reminder of what the Park was in its hey-day, before it’s ongoing transformation to Pixar’s Star Wars-Marvel Carsland Park.

    – Jeff

  14. My family will really miss the hat- the Chinese theater never ment much to us but we understand others wanting the visual back. Why not just move the hat as the park has more than enough dead ends and spots no one visits that it could be moved to that would not be in the way.

  15. I think it is a shame to removing an iconic landmark such as the this. I love everything Disney does but I am not sure this is a good move. The Hat has become the logo for Hollywood studios. I will miss it!

  16. Sad to see the hat go. Each park has an icon…Magic Kingdom has the Castle, Epcot has the ball, Animal Kingdom has the tree, and Hollywood Studios has the hat. The Chinese Theatre would not be a good icon…has to big something BIG, that stands out, and truly represents the theme park, ALONG with Walt Disney World…and the theatre just isn’t that.

  17. Really not sorry to see it go – it always looked out of place, like an afterthought. I would rather see the front of the theater than the hat.

  18. The Theatre is going as well! This is just the beginning of some major changes to the end of Hollywood Drive. We should see more of a California Adventure look and feel to Hollywood Studios “Main Street” when it is all done…

  19. I am a huge Disney fan and love the sorcerer’s apprentice. That hat is a beloved Disney icon to me and I will be sad to see it go, that is what my children identify Hollywood Studios by, I would like to see it moved and preserved rather than torn down. This would be a great place for a character spot for sorcerer Mickey, I would be first in line.

  20. I was very saddened to hear that this is being removed, but am glad I have a trip in December so I can see it one last time. I’m excited to see what goes up in its place as the theater is NOT a Disney icon, and come on people – this is DISNEY.

  21. I am thrilled to see this hat go. My friend and I were just there a few weeks ago and had a long discussion about how disappointing the studios have become. The original feeling there was of sumptuous old Hollywood and back stage production magic. With the exceptions of The Brown Derby and Sunset Boulevard, the park has really lost that ambiance. Little by little the film-related attractions gave way to aggressive merchandising opportunities masquerading as half-hearted attractions. We thought the worst offense was blocking the original view of the Chinese Theatre. I know the next phase for this park won’t bring the production theme back, but I sure won’t miss anything they are taking away.

  22. I truly respect Walt’s believe that the Parks are living entities and are forever changing, but this does make me very sad. The Sorcerer’s Hat is from the movie Fantasmic and if that is not an icon I don’t know what is.

    Lately, it appears that the Imagineer’s are making changes just for the sake of change.

    It blocks the view of the Theater? So What.

  23. I am sort of ambivalent about the hat. In some ways I liked it and will miss it. I also feel, though, that it blocks the view of the Chinese theater so in other ways I wont miss it. If you ask me, the change they need to make most of all is to the Great Movie Ride. They need to scrape the old MGM stuff and redo the whole thing completely Disney. There are more than enough great Disney movies to create a very enjoyable ride.

  24. I was not a fan of the hat. I felt it was an eyesore and did not belong there. It was not there from the beginning. I was at the park from day one and it loved the view of the theatre as I entered. not sorry to see it go.

  25. I am thrilled to see the hat go! Although I do think that it should be placed somewhere else – just not in the sight-line of the entrance to MGM…er…Hollywood Studios.

    I used to love the old Hollywood feel of the main street.

    I understand and try to embrace change, but the hat needs to MOVE!

  26. I liked Mickey’s Sorcerer’s hat at Disney Studios, actually it’s hard for me to remember what it was like with all that open space before it was put there.

    I cannot believe all you people lamenting the loss of Maelstrom, perhaps one of the lamest excuses for a water ride in all four Disney parks. The lineup was always rediculously long for the ride that was over in a flash. And it was embarrassing for the Spirit of Norway cast members as people raced through the small theatre at the end of the ride and ignored the movie designed to tell everyone about the host Country. For politeness I sat through the film once on my first trip. I say R.I.P. Maelstrom, bring on the Frozen gang!

    The Hat is large, glossy and flashy, like Hollywood itself, and it looked great in the family photos along the Sunset Strip. And was welcome icon for the park in my view. Now it’s time for a complete revamp of The Chinese Theatre and The Great Movie Ride…keep The Wizard of Oz and Singing in the Rain, perhaps John Wayne and James Cagney. ALIEN is long past it’s prime, this would be a great place to put in a Star Wars section and the film at the end and the Fantasia sequence needs to go DIGITAL projection and clean up all of the clips…Tarzan should go too…it’s time for the purests out there to relent. Mr. Disney loved progress and sure it’s great to have respect for the old, but it would be great if attractions like this could move on and change from time to time.

    And for the record, I liked the Mickey’s wand over Spaceship Earth too!!

  27. Loved the Mickey Hat, but I am a sorcerer nut. Will be a bit sad to see it go, but as long as they don’t replace it with something to do with Frozen I won’t mind too much. Personally I think that they will be making a huge thing about Star Wars now,because Universal has Harry Potter.

  28. I don’t understand why something like the chinese theater which is already a landmark elsewhere would be a better view than the very iconic hat from sorcerer’s apprentice. I will truly miss it but I hope that it’s replaced with something unique to Disney and not just ripped out for the view of the theater. That will break my heart.

  29. I am THRILLED it is finally coming down. We thought it was an eye sore and was kept up way too long. The Grauman Chinese Theater is a symbol of old Hollywood and that should be what you see when you walk down the boulevard! I hope they don’t put anything in front of it again — except maybe the Christmas tree.

  30. I love seeing that hat go. I’ve been every year since 95 and it never seemed to fit properly. Of all of the park icons it was certainly the worst. I personally am a fan of the earful tower. The hat was never attractive to me. See ya later hat!

  31. Am quite sad to see the hat go, as it’s always been there since we have visited WDW (2001 to now), and I consider it to be a great symbol for the park. However, I can see from other comments how it obscures the view to the theatre, so maybe it is a good idea after all…?
    I think there should be some sort of symbol, as the other parks have theirs, so let’s see what they have up their sleeves…!
    We visit next in Sept ’15, so it will be interesting to see whatever new changes have occurred!!
    Overall, I shall enjoy my hols immensely whatever happens. Have fun peeps!!! xxx

  32. I can’t say I’m sad to see it go, but I do feel attached to the idea of each theme park having a staple icon. Cinderella’s Castle, Spaceship Earth and the Tree of Life are all iconic and functional to support guest attractions. While the hat was recognizable, it only held a makeshift gift shop which isn’t very functional at all. Although Sorcerer Mickey is well recognized, I don’t think the hat was a true representation of a movie themed park. With the hat being removed and the Backlot Tour shut down for views of Earful Tower, Disney has a big chance to find another great park icon. I’m sure they’ve already chosen something great to fill the open space!

  33. This decision is one of the worst in history for Disney. Who cares about the Chinese Theater because you can get a picture of it behind this iconic landmark. This is another big upset in my opinion for Disney. First, Maelstrom now this whats next getting rid of the castle. All I no is if they replace the hat with something Frozen related or Star Wars I won’t be happy.

  34. Very happy it’s coming down. Those who think of it as the “icon” don’t understand that the Chinese Theater is meant to evoke that visual icon as the representation of all the dreams and glamour of Hollywood. It is the symbol of Hollywood magic, and hopefully Disney guests will be able to understand that without the need to be relentlessly “synergized” to other Disney properties.

  35. Let it go . Those of us who remember MGM Studios opening will be pleased to see the hat removed, just wonder what else will obscure the Chinese Theatre . Love the hat – but not there ! Lots of changes at WDW so it’s an exciting time ahead. We may not immediately agree with them all – I’m gutted about Maelstrom as I was about Horizons and the Jeremy Irons commentary on Spaceship Earth – but I reckon there are magical times ahead and I welcome movement . Still lots of nostalgia around . Lights / Action show has spectacle but no magic – so a big area for the clever Disney team to play with and I’m sure we will be delighted – mostly !!

  36. Sad to see it go. But I do like change. The theater is not even Disney so that is not the icon to have. The Tower of Terror is. My 2 cents.

  37. I am sad to see it go. I was also sad to see the Epcot sign go that was on top of Spaceship earth.

    To my knowledge the owner and company of the Chinese theater made Disney put the hat there to hide the theater in the studios.

    i wonder if taking the hat down would go against the contract Disney and Kodak had put in place when the hat went up.

  38. While I personally liked the hat, the location never made sense since it blocked the original iconic Chinese Theater. Instead of telling us what is closing at this park, how about Disney make an announcement about what is COMING?? Between the close of American Idol, Backlot tour, and Jack Sparrow attraction, make an announcement already! And BTW — while we’re at it, close Lights/Motor/Action. Free up that space as well and really go for something great that we can get excited about.

  39. I am very unhappy they have decided to take down the Sorcerer’s Hat! I feel that many of the decisions that have been made lately in all of the parks, have not been wise ones!
    I wish we would be given more notice, so we would be able to make arrangements to see the things that have wonderful memories for us before they are taken away.
    Let’s not ever forget to think of how Walt would do things. This is his Dream!

  40. I am very sorry to see it go. Disney is removing staple icons. First Malestrom,the Fife and Drum Corp in Epcot and now the hat in the Studios. What will be next the Castle

  41. Will I miss the hat?? Absolutely. The hat is the visual centerpiece of DHS, and the park’s icon. It’s the virtual “goal line” when entering the park, and the central orientation focal point. Removing the hat is visually akin to removing Cinderella’s castle.

  42. I don’t have any particular love for the hat, but I certainly don’t think that the Chinese Theatre is much to look at or even interesting to most people from younger generations. . . It is not even a Disney Icon. Hopefully Disney will replace it with something else better. . . .

  43. I became a Disney lover after the hat was up, so yes it was my Hollywood Studio icon and will be sad to see it go. It seems that if you were a Disney fan before the hat went up then you would be sad to see it go. Either way I am excited to see what it will be replaced with. With all the other closures I am hoping for a large expansion in this park. It really needs it.

  44. Wonderful news! I’ll be happy to have the view of the theatre again. The hat never seemed quite right plopped there. I know they wanted a new and better icon than the Mickey Eared water tower, they could always move it elsewhere… any room in the Fantasmic area? OR perhaps a better question: What icon would you folks think would best symbolize Disney Studios? I just had a flash of the Disney Castle all their movies start with, customized for the theme of the movie, as a giant new façade of an entrance. AK has a great entrance symbolizing what is in store in the parks, why not the Studios inviting us into the movies, via their movie logo? (Now I want to pack my bags and go!)

  45. I am happy to see the hat go because I consider the Tower of Terror to be the “icon” at Hollywood Studios. I recognize it doesn’t occupy a similar relative park location as do Cinderella Castle, Spaceship Earth, and the Tree of Life, but it’s absolutely the thing I think about when I think about the park. When I make the turn onto Sunset Blvd., there it is, drawing me down the street. You can see it from other locations on property, it’s huge, it’s intimidating, and it should replace the hat on any “Four Parks”-style merchandise or clothing.

  46. I am sad to see the sorcerer’s hat go. I’ve been to Disney 6 times and every time I went there I saw the sorcerer’s hat.

  47. I never minded the hat so sorry to see it go. Just hope something “Frozen” DOES NOT replace it. That Frozen is everywhere. And please tell me this is not the last year for Osbourne Light show

  48. I have hated that hat from the day it appeared and was horrified that it remained up after the Millenium celebration. I will be delighted to finally see it go away.

    One of my favorite views in the parks USED to be walking to the Studios from Boardwalk and looking across the water to see the Chinese Theater surrounded by palm trees looming on the horizon. It was like you were truly walking toward “Old” Hollywood. I hope that view is restored with the demolition of the hat.

    As an added bonus, maybe the giant aluminum Christmas tree can be restored to its rightful place in front of the theater.

  49. I’m glad to see it moved, but it would be nice to preserve it maybe on the top of a building somewhere in the park. HS needs some updating, hopefully more rides in the future. We never stay there a full day because of the lack of rides, shows, etc.

  50. I’m extremely sorry to see the hat go. It kinda sucks really.

    Yes I do wish they did more with it then have a little shop underneath.

    The Ear Towers aren’t a good symbol for the park. They’re not really even in the park. The Chinese theater was never a real symbol for the park.

    Magic Kingdom has the Castle, Epcot as the SpaceShip earth, and Animal Kingdom has the Tree. All great symbols and photo opps for when you walk into the parks. Hollywood Studios won’t have that once the hat is gone.

    When the hat came in it seemed to add some much needed Magic to the park.

  51. When we saw this my wife and I both said aww.
    But 2 seconds later we realized that it’s a good thing. You kinda get attached to things because they’re there. But things have to change or they get stale. For every person who is upset when a ride or attraction is removed there is someone else who says that there’s never anything new in WDW.
    But everyone is happy when something really cool is put in its place. I think that is a good decision. Hopefully whatever they do there will maintain the integrity of the area.

  52. Hi Deb!

    This is news I’ve been waiting to hear for over 10 years! I’m tingling with anticipation of being able to see the wonderful view of the Theater from Hollywood Blvd. once again.
    Sorry to see it go…? Not at All! Good Riddance!

    ~ Johnny

  53. Another web site mentioned that the Jack Sparrow exhibit would be leaving too. My heart leapt up thinking briefly that they were talking about the Pirates of the Caribbean attraction. I had forgotten about that walk-through attraction at the Studios. I want the Pirates of the Caribbean attraction to return to its original script. I’ve had it up to my keister with Jack Sparrow.

  54. Glad the hat’s going away. But it’s not half as bad as that “temporary” stage mounted in front of it. That stage – and the blaring, thumping bass “music”, is obnoxious. I hope Disney doesn’t put that stage back up. Don’t screw up the sight lines.

  55. I am truly sorry to see the Disney’s Hollywood Studios”Sorcerer’s Hat” become a part of History. I was so excited to see the “newest” WDW Theme Park when it opened & especially the “Sorcerer’s Hat” Icon because of my Son, “Joey”. At a very young age, we watched “Fantasia” together & he was so inspired by the “Sorcerer’s Apprentice” that he decided right then & there, that He would too become a great “Wizard” (Professional Magician). He studied hard, read EVERY book available & apprenticed under a Professional Magician, Mr. Wendley, who trained him & even sponsored him in his Club, The Magician’s Ring, where he learned from other Magicians & started performing for 4-H, Children’s Museums, & other Venues. Today, He is a Professional Magician, performing his “craft” with confidence, skill & “that spark of Disney Magic” that thrills audiences of every age. He had a “Snow Globe” with “Mickey & the Hat” that sits on his Desk & his stuffed “Sorcerer Mickey” Doll on his Daughter’s bed.

    Many years later, after he was married & had 3 beautiful children, we were so thrilled to take him & his family to Disney’s Hollywood Studio & have a Cast Member take a picture of all of us under “The Sorcerer’s Hat”.

    It is a sad day, remembering the moments & hearing that it will be replaced because I honestly feel that it, more than any other icon, truly captured the “magic” that Walt Disney always wanted everyone to see. I hope at some point, the “Hat” will return to inspire others, as “it”, along with the Animated Segment, the Movie & the “Hat” Family Photo, inspired my Son & gifted us with a Memory that we all will cherish for the rest of our lives.

    Farewell to our favorite icon & may you return, like the magic of Disney often does, for us to gaze upon again in another place or time.

  56. I heard a rumor that it was put up to block the view of the Chinese Theater, something about royalties when a Disney photo showed it in the background. Could’ve been just that, a rumor.

  57. It’s about time. The hat was a mistake from the very beginning. The Chinese theater is a much better icon for the park. Why would you want to block the beautiful view of the theater ? They should relocate the hat to the front of the park where Sorcerer Mickey and the brooms are.

  58. Am in agreement with most of the writers who wrote that they are glad to see it go. Hope they don’t put anything in it’s place. Want to see the architecture of the grand Chinese Theater again.

  59. I’m not sure if I’ll miss the hat. I think they missed an opportunity to actually do something cool beneath it, and I think if they had done something other than the pin trading (or whatever it was under there), people would have responded to it better. I have to admit that it’ll be nice to actually be able to get a good picture in front of The Great Movie Ride again! I never thought it really compared to Cinderella’s Castle, Spaceship Earth, or the Tree of Life as a park icon, so I hope the Imagineers can come up with the perfect landmark to showcase Hollywood Studios (or MGM, as it will always be known to me! 🙂 ).

  60. No I am happy to see it go! I feel the Chinese Theater is a better icon and the hat really blocked the beauty of the view as you come into the park. I think it is a great decision!

  61. I am torn about the hat coming down. I believe in the long run it will be for the best. I look forward to being able to look down the street and see the theater again.

  62. Yes, I am sad! When vacationing at the World, my family as always used the “hat” as a meeting place and a great photo op. That being said, I trust Disney to replace it with something equally as defining and magical!!!

  63. I remember when this park first opened. It was MGM Studios. First they changed the name to Hollywood Studios, and now this – they are removing the Sorcerer’s Hat. What’s next – oh yeah, I remember reading something about this being the last year for the Osborne Festival of Lights. They should leave well enough alone.

  64. Yes and no….it would be great to see all the way down the boulevard like it was intended but the hat is pretty cool. I hope they still use it somewhere.

  65. I, for one, am not sorry to see it go. I have really missed seeing the Chinese Theater at the end of Hollywood Boulevard ever since it went up. Hopefully they won’t put anything back in the space and let the theater dominate the street. The Earful Tower should go back to being the icon of DHS.

  66. I cannot believe that Disney is going to remove the Sorcerer’s hat from the Studios! What else can possibly be a better icon??

  67. No, I am not glad to see it go. It never seemed to a “real” part of the park, it just did not fit in, anymore than the Giant Wand beside Spaceship Earth fitted in.

  68. I’m glad to see it go as I never thought it belonged there to begin with. It blocked the view down Hollywood Boulevard to Grauman’s Chinese Theatre/The Great Movie Ride.