Walt Disney World’s Hollywood Studios turns 35 this year and, to celebrate, Disney has announced a special ceremony and merchandise.

Disney’s Hollywood Studios first opened on 1st May, 1989, and was known as the Disney–MGM Studios Park. It was WDW’s third theme park and the brainchild of (then CEO) Michael Eisner, who originally just wanted to add a new entertainment pavilion to EPCOT.

As plans progressed, it was decided that an entirely new theme park would be a better fit – here we are, 35 years later!

Hollywood Studios Turns 35

hollywood studios opening day
Opening day at Hollywood Studios – then Disney-MGM Studios Park. Disney.

Alongside a series of nostalgia-inducing photos from opening day at Hollywood Studios, Disney revealed that a celebration will take place at 11am on 1st May at the Theater of the Stars. While Disney is keeping tight-lipped about the details, we expect some of the park’s most iconic characters to make an appearance.

Also from 1st May, guests can shop an exclusive selection of Disney’s Hollywood Studios 35th Anniversary merchandise. Items include t-shirts, a Loungefly backpack, and an exclusive pin, all of which will be available at the Stage 1 Company Store.

Unusually, Disney has shared that guests will need to join a virtual queue to shop the collection – this will be available from 1st May at 7am ET on the My Disney Experience app. Note that guests will need valid park admission for the relevant day to join the virtual queue.