There have been a number of people misbehaving at Disney lately. Depending on their offense, the punishment will, no doubt, be banned for life from the parks. If you happen to be one of those people, don’t worry, you’re not alone. Some celebrities have been banned from Disney Properties.
So, let’s take a look at some of the famous people who have been banned from Disney Parks.
1. Bruce Springsteen: Banned in the USA
In the 1980s, there were few rock artists bigger than Bruce Springsteen. “The Boss” was coming off the heights of Born to Run and Darkness on the Edge of Town and was about to release the biggest album of his career, Born in the USA. He and fellow E Street bandmate Stevie Van Zandt decided to take a relaxing day at Disneyland.
They weren’t allowed into the Park, though. The kid working the gate refused to let the pair in because they were wearing bandanas. They were accused of being gang members and thrown out. Ironically enough, Van Zandt would go on to play Silvo Dante in The Sopranos, so perhaps the Cast Member knew something the rest of us didn’t.
While escorted out of the Park by security, Springsteen yelled, “We’re going to Knotts Berry Farm.”
In his autobiography, Springsteen revealed that they weren’t allowed into Knotts Berry Farm for the same reason.
Van Zandt did not take this slight lightly. He published a letter calling for a boycott of all things Disney. “Nobody expresses their individuality in the Magic Kingdom except maybe the guy in the rodent suit,” Van Zandt wrote. Obviously, the ban never really took effect.
To show there were no hard feelings, after playing the halftime show at Super Bowl XLIII in Tampa, Springsteen yelled the iconic post-Super Bowl slogan, “I’m going to Disney World.”
2. President Barack Obama: No President Shall Pass
While on a campaign stop in Anaheim in 2018, former President Barack Obama admitted that he had been thrown out of Disneyland as a college student.
While on the Skyway, Obama admitted that he was smoking. He made sure to clarify that it was only a cigarette. When his gondola landed, two large security guards were waiting to escort him out of the Park.
Disney CEO Bob Iger immediately took to Twitter to ensure Disney fans that he was not the CEO when Obama was thrown out of Disneyland.
@BarackObama just opened his speech in Anaheim with a story from his college years about getting kicked out of Disneyland for smoking cigarettes on a ride. "This is a true story everybody, I was booted from the Magic Kingdom!" He can always come back, as long as he doesn't smoke!
— Robert Iger (@RobertIger) September 8, 2018
Don’t worry, President Obama has been allowed to return to Disney Parks. He even gave a Presidential Address on tourism from the steps in front of Cinderella Castle. Although he was, admittedly, traveling with a larger entourage since his college days.
3. Blake Lively: Gossip Girl Gone
Before she was a Gossip Girl, Blake Lively was just a kid growing up a few minutes away from Disneyland. Lively was banned for something every kid in the 90s tried at least once.
Before Disney had every piece of information about you and required a fingerprint scan to get in, you could exit the Park and return with a simple stamp. Lively tried using hairspray to transfer the stamp to her brother so they could both return.
They were brought to Disney Jail and told they could not return to the Parks for a year. She was only six at the time.
Lively has since been allowed to return to the Parks, including spending her birthday there.
It should be noted that all of these celebrities have since been allowed back into the Parks. The rule that kept Springsteen and Van Zandt out of the Parks has also been rescinded.
See, celebrities are just like the rest of us. They can do bad things and get thrown out of Disney Parks, just like your average American. It should be noted, though, that all of these events took place in the 80s and 90s, long before the days of social media. Today, we would have known about these stories within minutes.
It was a simpler time.