The Disney Wiki

It's Tough to Be a Bug!

39,243pages on
this wiki
Add New Page
Add New Page Comments0

It's Tough to Be a Bug! is a nine-minute long 3-D short film based on A Bug's Life. Using theater lighting, 3-D filming techniques, audio-animatronics, computer animation, and various other special effects, the show gives the audience an idea of what it would be like to be a bug. Flik hosts the show and educates the viewer on why bugs shouldn't be seen as pests, but more as friends. The attraction opened in Disney's Animal Kingdom at the Walt Disney World Resort on April 22, 1998, a full seven months before the actual film debuted in theaters. The film's theater is housed inside the Tree of Life. The show was duplicated three years later in the A Bug's Land section of Disney California Adventure on February 8, 2001.


At Disney's Animal Kingdom, the Bug's Life theater is located inside The Tree of Life. As the queue winds around the tree, visitors can glimpse animal carvings on the tree that aren't visible from other vantage points. The "underground" pre-show area features posters of various bug acts from the show, as well as those for all-insect parodies of Broadway musicals, such as Beauty and the Bees, Web Side Story, Little Shop of Hoppers and My Fair Ladybug.

At Disney California Adventure, the Bug's Life theater is located in a bug's land. There, the queue passes through a replica of Ant Island before heading underground, where the queue appears the same as the one at Disney's Animal Kingdom.


In Disney's Animal Kingdom, a female bug voice says "Ten minutes till showtime." before the song "One" plays. After the song, "Tomorrow", the voice says, "Five minutes till showtime." When "Tonight" is playing, the voice says "One minute till showtime." After the song, the doors open. But in California Adventure, the voice is a male bug and has "Flight of the Bumblebee".

The doors close, and the announcer tells the audience not to buzz, sting, pollinate or chirp during the show. Flik pops up upside-down from the ceiling. Then, Flik tells the audience to put their bug-eye glasses on and the butterflies fly away. The title card, a leaf that says "It's tough to be a bug!", appears. Then, jungle music begins to play, and a Mexican redknee tarantula (referred to as a Chilean Tarantula in the show) named Chili makes his appearance, surprising Flik. A pair of acorn weevils, along with Weevil Kneevil, place a slingshot on the stage and launch acorns from it. Chili shoots the first acorn with a quill, but fails to shoot the second due to Weevil holding on to it. Weevil then taunts Chili, who chases after him. The next guest is a soldier termite who defends his mound by spraying intruders with acid. A piece of the set (wood) falls with a rumble and the "Termitnator" steps out. The termite shoots at a taunting flea. Sensing more intruders, the termite shoots at the audience (despite Flik's protests) until he runs out of acid and leaves. Flik next introduces a stink bug named Claire de Room, who walks onto the stage. The acorn weevils place a flower as a target. Weevil re-enters the scene and crashes into the flower, causing it move towards the audience; Claire then passes gas, which affects and disgusts both Weevil and the audience.

An explosion is heard as Hopper, furious that Flik has allowed humans into the insect world, appears. A rhinoceros beetle chases Flik off the stage and four Weevils hold up an ad for "Knock 'em Dead" exterminators. The acorn weevils turn over the ad and use it as a makeshift movie screen to show clips from old monster movies featuring giant bugs. Hopper thinks that it's time for humans to have a taste of their own medicine, and a giant fly swatter attempts to flatten the audience. The screen goes black as a hand appears with a can of bug spray. Hornets sting the audience, and several Black widow spiders go up and down, trying to capture and scare the audience. Hopper says that nothing can stop him, but a chameleon appears and tries to eat him. Hopper, afraid of the chameleon, retreats.

Flik reappears and says that he forgot to mention about reptiles, which segues into the finale. Bees, dung beetles (The Dung Brothers), dragonflies and ladybugs sing about how insects help humans and about how "it's tough to be a bug". Weevil returns, holding a moldy cupcake, and the bugs chase him. The butterflies come back to form as curtains and Flik wraps things up, saying that magnifying glasses is for looking at little things, not for burning little things and the show ends. The announcer says that audience members should remain seated, so that the beetles, maggots and cockroaches can leave safely. The bugs start to talk at once and the announcer says to pick up the "grubby things" before they exit. In the Animal Kingdom show, the female voice says to exit through the doors to the left, while the male voice says to exit through the doors to the right. The guests put their bugs eyes in the bins outside the theater and exit.


Queue music

The queue features parodies or renditions of songs from famous Broadway shows using bug sounds.

Track Name Parody / rendition of
1 "One" (A Cockroach Line) "One" (A Chorus Line)
2 "Beauty and the Bees" (Beauty and the Bees) "Beauty and the Beast" (Beauty and the Beast)
3 "Tomorrow" (Antie) "Tomorrow" (Annie)
4 "I Feel Pretty" (Web Side Story) "I Feel Pretty" (West Side Story)
5 "Hello Dung Lovers" (The Dung and I) "Hello Young Lovers" (The King and I)
6 "Tonight" (Web Side Story) "Tonight" mixed with Flight of the Bumblebee (West Side Story)

The show's score was composed and conducted by Bruce Broughton.

Theme song

The theme song, "It's Tough to be a Bug," was written by George Wilkins with lyrics by Kevin Rafferty, and is available on Music from Disney's California Adventure.


Other characters include Claire De Room and Henry the Bee.


  • The Termite-ator is a reference to the Terminator from the Terminator films.
  • The audio-animatronic for Hopper is one of the most complex ever created by Walt Disney Imagineering.
  • Hopper appears in the attraction despite his death in the movie.
  • The theater is sometimes used for movie previews like Maleficent, Ant-Manand Zootopia because of its 4-D effects.


The Posters that are featured at the entrance:

v - e - d
Disney California Adventure logo
Buena Vista Street

Red Car Trolley

Hollywood Land

Animation Academy | Disney Animation Building | Disney Junior - Live on Stage! | Frozen: Live at the Hyperion | Monsters, Inc. Mike & Sulley to the Rescue! | Sunset Showcase Theater | Turtle Talk with Crush | The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror

Grizzly Peak

Grizzly River Run | Redwood Creek Challenge Trail | Soarin' Over California

Pacific Wharf

The Bakery Tour | Walt Disney Imagineering Blue Sky Cellar

A Bug's Land

It's Tough to Be a Bug! | Flik's Flyers | Heimlich's Chew Chew Train | Francis' Ladybug Boogie | Princess Dot Puddle Park | Tuck and Roll's Drive 'Em Buggies

Paradise Pier

Toy Story Midway Mania! | California Screamin' | Mickey's Fun Wheel | Goofy's Sky School | Silly Symphony Swings | Golden Zephyr | King Triton's Carousel of the Sea | Games of the Boardwalk | Jumpin' Jellyfish | The Little Mermaid: Ariel's Undersea Adventure | World of Color | Ariel's Grotto

Cars Land

Radiator Springs Racers | Mater's Junkyard Jamboree | Luigi's Flying Tires | Luigi's Rollickin' Roadsters


Disney's Grand Californian Hotel & Spa | Disney's Paradise Pier Hotel

Former Attractions

Superstar Limo | ElecTRONica | Lucky the Dinosaur | Back to Never Land | Golden Dreams | Maliboomer | S.S. Rustworthy | Disney's LuminAria | Who Wants to Be a Millionaire – Play It! | Block Party Bash | Muppet*Vision 3D | Aladdin: A Musical Spectacular | For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration | Bountiful Valley Farm

Former Areas

Condor Flats (absorbed by Grizzly Peak) | Golden State (divided into its sub-areas)


Guardians of the Galaxy - Mission: BREAKOUT!

v - e - d
Disney's Animal Kingdom logo
The Oasis

The Oasis Exhibits

Discovery Island

Tree of Life | It's Tough to Be a Bug! | Discovery Island Trails


Festival of the Lion King | Kilimanjaro Safaris | Pangani Forest Exploration Trails | Wild Africa Trek

Rafiki's Planet Watch

Wildlife Express Train | Conservation Station | Habitat Habit! | Affection Section


Expedition Everest | Kali River Rapids | Maharajah Jungle Trek | Flights of Wonder | Rivers of Light

DinoLand U.S.A.

DINOSAUR | Finding Nemo - The Musical | Fossil Fun Games | Primeval Whirl | The Boneyard Playground | TriceraTop Spin


Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge | Disney's Coronado Springs Resort | Disney's All-Star Movies Resort | Disney's All-Star Music Resort | Disney's All-Star Sports Resort

Former Attractions and Entertainment

Camp Minnie-Mickey | March of the Art-imals Parade | Pocahontas and her Forest Friends | Discovery River Boats | Lucky the Dinosaur | Tarzan Rocks!


Pandora: The World of Avatar

v - e - d
A Bug's Life logo
A Bug's Life | Soundtrack | Video Game | Classic Storybook
Disney Parks
A Bug's Land | Bountiful Valley Farm | Disney Animation Building | Flik's Flyers | Francis' Ladybug Boogie | Heimlich's Chew Chew Train | It's Tough to Be a Bug! | Princess Dot Puddle Park | Stitch and Friends Summer Surprise | Tuck and Roll's Drive 'Em Buggies

Entertainment: One Man's Dream II: The Magic Lives On! | World of Color
Restaurants: Farmer's Market | Sam Andreas Shakes
Shops: P.T. Flea Market
Parade: Disney On Parade 100 Years of Magic | Pixar Play Parade | Tokyo Disneyland Electrical Parade: DreamLights

Flik | Atta | Dot | The Queen | Aphie | Dr. Flora | Mr. Soil | Thorny | Cornelious | Hopper | Molt | Thumper | Axel and Loco | Grasshoppers | P.T. Flea | Dim | Rosie | Heimlich | Francis | Slim | Gypsy | Manny | Tuck and Roll | Circus Bugs | The Blueberries | Bird | Chicks | The Fly Brothers
The Time of Your Life | A Place You've Never Been
Ant Island | P.T. Flea's Circus | Bug City | Bug Bar | Hopper's Hideout
See Also
The Science Behind Pixar | Pixar in a Box

Also on Fandom

Random Wiki