• Thomas Loftin

The Star Wars Experience

“Star Wars is awesome! I am so blessed that I had the opportunity to be a part of it; to walk in these iconic locations and soon you’ll be able to do that as well. Not in a galaxy far, far away; but in a place close to home.”

-Harrison Ford

In celebration of DisneyLand’s 60th anniversary, ABC aired a special edition of “The Wonderful World of Disney” which gave fans a closer look at the Star Wars Experience. During the special Ford mentioned several components of the experience which were only hinted at during this past summer’s D23 expo. From unique interaction to heart thumping thrill rides, the Star Wars Experience is shaping up to deliver for hardcore fanboys like never before. As someone who has frequented Disney Parks, I will give a breakdown on how I envision the imagineers will make Star Wars an experience that will be remembered for a lifetime.

*Piloting the Millennium Falcon*

One of the most exciting parts of the upcoming Star Wars experience is the Millennium Falcon ride. All of us have envisioned sitting in the cock pit of the fastest ship in the galaxy and now we will have the chance. Based on the concept footage, I see that this attraction will be a 3-D motion theater ride similar to what is currently offered with “Star Tours”. I would much prefer that the experience be more of a role specific crew based ride such as “Mission: Space”; but given that a motion theater can accommodate guests at a faster rate, I think the crew based option is out.

*Witnessing a battle between the First Order and the Resistance*

Seeing Star Wars on the silver screen and witnessing the Star Wars live are two separate experiences. I have full faith in Disney Parks to get this part right. The imagineers spare no expense as it pertains to their attention to detail. Watching the battle for the galaxy is sure to put us all in awe. I believe that this attraction will be a track based ride that focuses more on the theatrics and special effects much like the current Hollywood Studios’ staple “Great Movie Ride” or Universal’s “Mummy.”

*Meeting the Droids and Aliens around the galaxy*

Disney is already well known for their Star Wars meet and greet opportunities, but I think that we can expect even more. The musts like Darth Vader, Boba Fett, and Chewbacca will still be around. However, I believe that we will begin to see even more free roaming characters populate the new experience. In my time at the Star Wars Weekends, it was common to see minor characters and species just living and interacting in the park as a guest would. Now that Star Wars is a permanent part of the parks, more of our galactic favorites are sure to appear.

*Walking in the Market and Dining at Unique Planets*

I said earlier that the imagineers pay close attention to detail. It will be the most prevalent in the simple experience of walking the park itself. Disney goes to great lengths to create a fully immersive world for its guest to vacation. I anticipate that the marketplace will include exclusive shopping and quick service dining options alongside architecture that is inspired by the concepts originally created by Ralph McQuarrie. As a Disney Parks enthusiast, I have to say that their table service dining locations and menus are second to none. I look forward to seeing the expanse of the galaxy on my plate in the near future.

*The Cantina*

This wretched hive of scum and villainy will be a must for any visitor. Based on the concept art, I suspect that we will see a screen to life interpretation of the dive that first introduced us to space pirates and lost limbs. I foresee that this will be an attraction as much as it will be an actual quick service dining experience. If tables can be reserved, I’ll have the corner booth.

So, there you have it. Star Wars will be a huge presence in Disney Parks within the next few years along side other huge additions which include an expansion of Toy Story and the world of Pandora from Avatar. It has never been a better time to be a fan. Well, maybe it will be a better time when the attractions actually open.

Check out a video of Harrison Ford’s announcement below…

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