Saturday, March 2, 2013
Captain EO's Limited Run Is Now 3 Years Old
Shortly after pop star Michael Jackson passed away in 2009, Disney executives began to debate among themselves whether to bring back Captain EO, the Michael Jackson 3D short film produced by George Lucas and directed by Francis Ford Coppola for exclusive showings in Disney Parks. Disneyland's Captain EO had closed in 1997 from Tomorrowland's Magic Eye Theater after about a 10 year run. By the time EO closed in 1997, it was dated and silly and few people bothered to fill up the large theater.
When the Disney executives settled the debate (the debate was basically Disney profiting from Jackson's tragic death at age 50) it was decided to bring back a Michael Jackson Captain EO "Tribute" for a limited engagement in 2010. That "limited engagement" is now 3 years old, a forgotten fact that was brought up by the Orange Counter Register this past week. The dollar signs won out once again. For the first month or two, people once again began flock Disneyland for the chance to see the self proclaimed "king of pop" dance and sing and try to act with the return of Captain EO. Oh yes, we can't forget about the whole new line of EO merchandise that was brought out to sell. But as anticipated as the return of Captain EO was at the time, one viewing of the film had even Michael Jackson fans (my sister for one) racing for the exit by the time the 17 minute film ended. In the end, in the second decade of the the 21st century, Captain EO is dated and silly and now plays to small crowds in the large theater.
Why doesn't Disney end the "limited run"? They have now gone on record to say there are no immediate plans to do so. It comes down to, "we got nothing else to put in there right now so Captain EO serves a purpose". A couple of thousand people a day wander in to see it even if they do leave the attraction shaking their heads. Eventually, Disney will replace the film with something else but when it comes to the priority list of things to do, it just isn't really high up there right now. Unfortunately. I've seen Captain EO twice since its return. I have no intention to see it again.