The dream is dead. Shrek 4-D, the long-running Universal Studios attraction that replaced Alfred Hitchcock: The Art Of Making Movies in 2003, is closing up shop—literally, the Shrek-themed gift shop, Shrek’s Ye Olde Souvenir Shoppe, will also shutter. Thankfully, the Meet Shrek And Donkey Experience “isn’t going anywhere,” Orlando-based theme park reporter Ashley Carter wrote in a tweet. Shrek 4-D will close on January 10, 2022, meaning you only have about three-and-a-half months to make your peace.
Now that you’ve had a moment to collect your thoughts, we can give Shrek 4-D, which was the first official sequel to Shrek, its proper send-off.
Back in 2003, there was no other way to get the pop culture-based witticisms of a stinky ogre and his talking Donkey other than to watch Shrek or buy a ticket to Universal. Such a Shrek-less world sounds ludicrous from the vantage point of a world with three Shrek sequels. Honestly, it’s surprising that a fourth film hasn’t materialized—but we are supposedly getting a Puss In Boots sequel next year, so we’ll see how much longer this drought lasts.
Also known as Shrek: The Ghost Of Lord Farquaad, the 3-D ride boasted a bonus fourth dimension that shook seats, sprayed liquid, and allowed fans to finally smell Shrek and Donkey’s farts—something we assume the crowd at Shrek’s Cannes premiere demanded. Of course, it also featured the original voice cast, including Mike Myers, Cameron Diaz, Eddie Murphy, and John Lithgow.
Still, the ride has a mixed relationship with the Shrek faithful. On IMDB, the film holds a 6.3 rating. However, diving into the reviews on Yelp, and you’ll find what you always feared: People complaining that the ride hurt their back. Others were more positive, saying that while the ride is “not worth the long line,” it “has A/C!”
Universal may be right to pull the attraction. As one Yelp review confirms, it was no advertisement for the movies. “Meh. I never watched the movies and this show/ride made me want to never watch it,” they wrote. “Maybe if I did watch the movies, I would’ve gotten the jokes... IDK. This was good to rest my feet a bit.” Brutal.
Versions of the attraction have already shut down around the world. Universal Studios Hollywood closed the curtains on Shrek 4-D in 2017. Thankfully, a passionate Shrek fan documented the open-casket wake on YouTube. Currently, “Final Showing Of Shrek 4-D At Universal Studios Hollywood” has 174,000 views, so someone must like this thing.
As the lights on Shrek 4-D go dark, we turn our attention to Universal Studios Japan and Singapore, where the ride is still, reportedly, operational.
RIP, Shrek 4-D. We hardly knew ye.