The Biggest Mistakes in Disney History

Disney has had some big hits and, well, some big misses, too.

Captain Jack Sparrow ©Disney

Don’t look at us that way, Jack, we’ll explain. We might love some seriously amazing Disney parks and movies, but they can’t all be winners.

Let’s look at the biggest mistakes in Disney history!

Superstar Limo

First up, Superstar Limo. When this attraction opened in Disney California Adventure, it became a point of contention almost immediately. The slow-moving, cheap-feeling ride had guests feeling like Hollywood stars chased by seedy paparazzi — not exactly the dream.

©Disney

Add the scary and questionably made “Cardboard” cutouts of celebrities, and it’s no wonder this ride closed down after only a short run.

Click here to learn more about Superstar Limo!

Big Movie Flops

Some of Disney’s movies haven’t exactly been “wins” either. We’re talking about some of the biggest flops of all time like Home on the Range or John Carter.

Home on the Range

And then there are the times where Disney just can’t seem to quit when something that was good starts going downhill fast. We’re looking at you, Pirates of the Caribbean 4 and 5. Why couldn’t they have skipped this mistake and stopped at Pirates 3?

Want to see more Disney flops? Click here!

ExtraTERRORestrial Alien Encounter and Stitch’s Great Escape

Disney World had a double hitter mistake with a certain piece of real estate in Magic Kingdom‘s Tomorrowland. Lots of folks had some questions when this magical park became home to the very scary ExtraTERRORestrial Alien Encounter.

This ride might have been cool and effective at scaring guests, but super adult rides like that one don’t really fit into the Magic Kingdom so Disney did close it a few years later.

©Disney

But why replace the whole ride system when you could implement a friendly face in place of the horrifying monster? Stitch’s Great Escape wasn’t much better. The space was still too scary for kiddos and that chili cheese burp? Yikes.

To see more about this scary ride, click here!

EuroDisney

We’ve got a whole park that was a pretty big mistake! When Disney opened EuroDisney in Paris it was a major financial failure and wildly unpopular with European audiences.

© Disney

Luckily, they were able to turn this failure around and ultimately gave us Disneyland Paris!

Click here to learn more about EuroDisney!

NBA Experience

The NBA Experience in Disney Springs is a rather recent failure that we had to shout out. This interactive basketball museum opened in 2019 with little fanfare. Those who like basketball liked it, but it wasn’t great for those outside the interest.

NBA Experience Sign is GONE

After less than a year, the spot was closed due to COVID-19, and it was recently announced that it will not be reopening. Well, that was a very short lived mistake!

Want to see more about this closure? Click here!

Disney’s America

And finally, we have to talk about a mistake that never came to be. Still, putting work into it seems to have been a mistake. Disney’s America is a theme park that never was — and with good reason.

“Disney’s Celebrate America! A Fourth of July Concert in the Sky” ©Disney

The edutainment concept was set to teach guests about the history of American — including the less-than-magical parts. With some not-so-great quotes from executives justifying the way the park would handle things like war and slavery, it’s no wonder the concept didn’t make it into existence. You can learn more about Disney parks that never were right here!

To learn more about Disney’s America, click here!

What do you think are Disney’s biggest mistakes? Tell us in the comments!

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One Reply to “The Biggest Mistakes in Disney History”

  1. I know I’m probably in the minority here but as a kid I was terrified to ride Space Mountain but I thought Alien Encounter was *funny* more than anything. Heck the Alien portion of The Great Movie Ride seemed more scary to me (or even just the trailer in the queue). I don’t think I would call EA “more adult” – I think it has less to do with the content and more to do with people’s (not just kids) of being confined in total darkness. Getting strapped into a chair and then plunged into pitch black conditions alone is what I think sent a lot of people into the red, not a big cartoonish alien. I just don’t see how that’s much different than Space Mountain but no one has a problem with that- I think it’s just parents know “oh Space Mountain is probably too scary for my kid” but didn’t know anything about EA. Maybe still a mistake, but I think the bigger mistakes with rebranding rides happened in Epcot – Journey Into Imagination becoming Journey Into YOUR Imagination is a travesty and I still don’t think many people would consider Mission Space worth losing Horizons over.