Disney May Be Saying Goodbye to Stitch's Great Escape

Stitch's Great Escape inside of Magic Kingdom's Tomorrowland was not a very popular ride. Panned by most critics and audiences, the ride replaced the better (yet terrifying) ExtraTERRORestrial Alien Encounter. We won't get into the history of that ride today. Still, ExtraTERRORestrial Alien Encounter was turned into Stitch's Great Escape in 2004, after numerous fans complained about how genuinely scary ExtraTERRORestrial Alien Encounter was.

The official logo for Stitch's Great Escape attraction at the Magic Kingdom.
The official logo for Stitch's Great Escape attraction at the Magic Kingdom.

Stitch's Great Escape wasn't much better. The ride mechanics stayed the same, with a reskin of the entire ride to reflect Stitch. I only went on the ride once, enjoyed it for what it was, and never rode it again. Apparently, I wasn't the only one. The ride went into seasonal operation on October 2, 2016, and then closed for good on January 6, 2018. From that point on, the building only served as a Stitch meet and greet, which it had started to do in October of 2017. This led many people to speculate that the ride would soon be extinct. Walt Disney World was getting ready to build and create several new attractions and guest experiences at that point — including Galaxy's Edge in Hollywood Studios, Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind in Epcot, and so on. But nothing had come out for what would be the fate of Stitch's Great Epcot.

Then in March of this year, Disney started to file several permits. These permits were filed around the same time the parks were being shut down in response to COVID-19, including this permit that was filed on March 19 of 2020. The part we should be aware of is the "Demo interior" under "General description of improvement". If you follow the Disney Parks, you've no doubt seen the skinned Stitch animatronic that was inside the ride. It's creepy, and for the sake of not wanting to scare any young readers we may have, I will not show it here. With this permit being filed, it's safe to say that Stitch's Great Escape is no more. But what will replace the ride? There are a lot of rumors floating around as to what it could be. According to Walt Disney World News Today, the new attraction could be a Wreck-It Ralph inspired one. As of right now, there is no construction happening in Disney World (however, the animals in Animal Kingdom are still being cared for, and general park upkeep is still happening).

This doesn't mean construction will start right away — even if the parks were open. We also don't know how much of the attraction will be demolished, or what else it entails. Another question people may be asking is, where would we meet Sitch? Guests can still meet Stitch (and Lilo!) at The Best Friends Breakfast at 'Ohana inside the Polynesian Village Resort. I think Tomorrowland is still an acceptable place for a Stitch meet and greet since he is an alien, but Disney could also station him at the flag poles on Main Street USA. Of course, Stitch could be taken out of Magic Kingdom altogether. He can easily fit in at Hollywood Studios, and even Animal Kingdom. Stitch is arguably one of the more popular Disney characters, so I wouldn't worry about meet and greets going away for the lovable alien.

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About Baltimore Lauren

I like pinball machines, Archie Comics, and bad movies. Sometimes I write about old books for the heck of it. Follow me on Twitter: @BaltimoreLauren
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