‘It’s Tough To Be A Bug”, a combination of a 3D film and live action show, at Walt Disney World’s Animal Kingdom is an attraction you don’t want to miss. I am not a big fan of sit-down theater shows, but this wonderfully produced presentation changed my mind, and it is now one of my favorite attractions at Animal Kingdom. Let me share with you some reasons why you’re gonna love it too.
1. Location—‘ It’s Tough To Be A Bug’ attraction is located inside the Tree of Life, the central focal point of the Animal Kingdom. It is the closest attraction to the front entrance. In other words, you can’t miss it. The Tree of Life stands 145 feet tall and 50 feet wide at its base, and the trunk is covered with over 300 meticulously detailed animal carvings. Just the thought of attending a show inside the Tree of Life is very
2. Walkway Surprises—To get to the entrance of the Tree of Life and the Bugs’ special performance, you follow an amazing winding pathway, past tangled roots, waterfalls, exotic plant life, and best of all, various intricately detailed animal carvings blended into the massive roots. As you move along the pathway, you and your family can search and identify all the different species of animals. It’s fun and a challenge to not only find the animals, but identify them. Before you know it, you’re at the entrance, the base of the Tree of Life and home to the ‘Tough To Be A Bug’ presentation.
3. Waiting Area—Once inside the Tree of Life, you will find that you have entered the interior of this gigantic tree, with its huge roots, more animal carvings, and obvious signs of insect inhabitants. It’s warm and dark, with very low lighting, just what you’d expect on the inside of a giant tree trunk. The atmosphere and surroundings are phenomenal, thanks to the ingenious contribution of Disney Imagineers. There are many different bug effects and animal carvings to observe in this area which makes your wait time go by faster.
4. Tree of Life Repertory Theatre—After experiencing the unique walkway and waiting area, you are invited to enter this large (430 seating capacity) beautiful theatre, and as you enter, each guest is given a pair of 3D glasses. Except for the fact that most of the performers will be bugs and insects of all varieties, this theatre is comparable to one you would visit on Broadway or some other big city. Get ready for a great performance.
5. Introduction by Flik—As the lights dim, the show begins, and right from the start you are immersed in the world of insects when your host, Flik, the famous ant from Disney’s ‘A Bug’s Life, is finally spotted coming from a hole in the ceiling. He invites the audience to put on their 3D ‘bug eyes’, officially becoming ‘honorary bugs’, seeing the world through the eyes of a bug. The movie screen made up of hundreds of butterflies who come to life and fly throughout the theatre. This is just the beginning of this amazing adventure, so sit back and get ready for an extraordinary performance.
6. 3D Special Effects—Flik introduces some bug survival techniques, beginning with a scary-looking tarantula who directs a pair of acorn weevils to launch acorns at the audience using a slingshot. Hopper interrupts the show illustrating his disgust with humans by highlighting human bug destruction tools, such as a fly swatter which seems to be trying to flatten the audience, and he sends his hornet army out into the audience and you find yourself dodging and ducking as they fly right over you. These are just a few of the 3D film effects.
7. Physical 4-D effects—Along with the 3D film effects, there are a few brilliant physical effects that cause the audience to ooh and ahh with delight. For instance, when the termite soldier sprays acid, you feel a slight mist, the stink bug emits a smelly stench, and there are a few more physical effect surprises; the best one will be an unexpected surprise. You will have to find out for yourself about this one. Both the 4D physical and 3D film effects make this show truly exceptional.
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8. A Break From the Heat or Rain—Disney’s Animal Kingdom is very spread out, and if you’re ready for a break from the heat or a place to wait out a rain shower, visit ‘It’s Tough To Be A Bug’. The show itself is only 9 minutes long; enough time to cool off, and hopefully, the rain shower will be over. Also, the attraction is centrally located, so you can begin your visit to Animal Kingdom right here.
9. Wait Times—Since this attraction is not a thrill ride, the line is seldom very long, and with all the animal carvings to observe along the way, the wait goes by quickly. If you have a reserved fast pass for one of the thrill rides, plan ahead and spend a short time enjoying this fun-filled show.
10. Family Friendly—Although all of the stage shows at Walt Disney World are family friendly, this one is
filled with special effects that enable your family to laugh and squeal with delight together. I know when my children and I experience this show, we have more fun watching each other react to the effects. I’ve never known anyone who doesn’t laugh at least once while dodging, ducking, or holding their noses during the stink bug’s release of a foul odor. Don’t pass by this attraction like I did for years. It has become one of my regular ‘must do’s’ every time we visit Animal Kingdom.
Final Thought—Not only is this a delightful, 3D, 4D experience, but it also has an important message for the human race. Insects are very important to our survival. They perform a vital function in their own way to keep our world running smoothly. Some insects can be harmful or destructive, but those professionals who study bug and insect behavior have discovered techniques and remedies that enable the bug world and the human world to co-exist. I am sure Flik and all the insects on this planet would agree.
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