May 1998 – January 2010
Tomorrowland – Honey I Shrunk The Audience! used the Tomorrowland theater, located beneath Space Mountain. Today, this theater space routinely changes between Star Wars film clips, Disney movie trailers, and limited-time releases, including the return of Captian EO.
Honey, I Shrunk The Audience! began in Disney World’s Epcot, just a few years after the first Honey, I Shrunk The Kids! film became a smash hit. Disneyland followed suit in 1998, bringing the same show to Tomorrowland’s theater. Though the premise had little to do with outer space, it did connect with the land’s original theme of futuristic technology, thanks to the lead character’s fictional inventions and the show’s use of special effects.
The show took place in the Imagination Institute, where Professor Wayne Szalinski (from Honey I Shrunk The Kids!) would receive the Inventor of the Year Award. As part of the ceremony, Szalinski and other professors were to perform demonstrations, thus warranting goggles (3D classes) for audience members.
Szalinski arrives, having shrunk himself into miniature form. As he arrived on stage, his control box for his Hoverpod drops to the ground, sending the device flying off screen. As the ceremony continues, the Hoverpod bounces back, knocking Wayne off the stage. Szalinski’s family arrive on stage and attempt to continue the ceremony, as his wife sets off in search of him.
The children stall for their father by showing off different gadgets and inventions from their father, with each setting off special effects for the audience. These included laser tricks, mice running under seats, and 3D animations. In this chaos, Szalinski returns to the stage, but as he attempts to return himself to normal size, he manages to shrink the audience instead.
Once the audience shrinks, they must avoid many perilous human-sized obstacles, from someone fainting, to a hungry dog, to bright camera flashes. Finally, Szalinski manages to bring the audience back to original size, just in time for the ceremony’s end.
As audiences moved on from the Honey, I Shrunk The Kids! franchise, the attraction’s popularity steadily decreased. The show never really fit into Tomorrowland, and with competition from a revamped Star Tours and Submarine Voyage, audiences felt little need to visit repeatedly. But in the end, the show’s end grew inevitable after Michael Jackson’s 2009 death. Disney took advantage of MJ’s resurging popularity to bring back Captain EO for a limited run, and Honey, I Shrunk The Audience! closed permanently.
Most of the original cast from the film reprised their roles for this attraction.
Kodak sponsored the show during its 12-year run, and featured advertisements in the lobby of the theater.