13 Facts You Might Not Know About Tower of Terror at Walt Disney World

Tower of Terror in Disney Hollywood Studios

Rarely do we get the chance to celebrate Friday the 13th at Disney Parks in October during the Halloween season. In fact, it only happens about every 11 years. To honor this Friday the 13th at Walt Disney World, we’re sharing 13 fun facts to know the next time you “drop in” to The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror Backstory

Walt Disney World Tower of Terror at night lit up

It’s Oct. 31, 1939 – Halloween night in Hollywood. The weather was in the mood to frighten people, as a sinister thunder and lightning storm was looming over Hollywood Hills. At The Hollywood Tower Hotel the film community’s elite gathered, not only desiring shelter from the pouring rain, but also to attend the exclusive Tip Top Club performances and celebrate a Halloween Ball in the Sunset Room.

Attending the party that night was the illustrious Gilbert London, star Carolyn Crosson, child-prodigy Sally Shine, and her nanny Emeline Partridge. At 8:05, the bellman Dewey Todd and the four guests boarded the elevator for the night of their lives. However, in a paranormal twist of events, lightning struck the hotel elevator towers and vanished, along with the five unfortunate souls who were inside.

The Hollywood Tower Hotel closed its doors and to this day, no one truly knows what happened that fateful night. Recently it seems the hotel has reopened as if not aware of the passage of time, and whispers that Gilbert, Carolyn, Emeline, Dewey, and Sally and her beloved Mickey Plush have been spotted roaming the halls in what can only be described as the “5th Dimension”.

Your trip to The Hollywood Tower Hotel

Darkness still lurks on Sunset Boulevard and if you happen to be visiting, the hotel doors have opened for you… Upon entering the hotel, the grand lobby is covered in a thick blanket of dust and cobwebs and appears that luggage, table settings and activities were suddenly abandoned in 1939. Hidden in plain sight at the bottom of the Directory board, you will find fallen letters warning the guests to “TAKE THE STAIRS.” As you enter the library and the boiler room beyond, something seems to pull you toward the maintenance service elevator. Be sure to keep your eyes peeled on the wall in the Boiler Room, as there’s a chance you might spot a familiar shape within a peculiar stain. And, If you dare, step directly into The Twilight Zone and find out for yourself what awaits.

While on the elevator be prepared to ride up and down, in a drop sequence that is randomly selected by the 5th dimension, and experience what it feels like to not only fall 199 feet, and be pulled down faster than gravity.

Hidden The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror details

There are some interesting items that you don’t want to miss while waiting for the elevator. First, in the library, under a trumpet there is a piece of sheet music for a song titled “What! No Mickey Mouse? What Kind of Party Is This?” written in 1932. You should also keep an eye open at the front desk. Next to the U.S. Postal Service Letter Box, you’ll find a clock that stopped exactly at 8:05; in fact, all clocks and watches in the hotel have stopped at that exact time after that fateful night. Lastly, as you are exiting the elevator and entering the lobby, to the left of the concierge desk you’ll see the poster card announcing that Anthony Fremont and his orchestra were performing that night at the Tip Top Club.

Oh! Before I forget, make sure you pay a visit to Caesar, the ventriloquist doll, before you leave! He lives in the basement of the Hollywood Tower Hotel and would love to see you…

Are you courageous enough to step into the Twilight Zone? Happy Friday the 13th and see you at the infamous Hollywood Tower Hotel! If you want to know more chilling facts about The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror™, make sure to watch the Ride & Learn below!