Did you sense a recent disturbance in the Force? This past weekend was the D23 Expo (Disney’s own fan club convention) where Star Wars fans throughout the galaxy essentially lost their minds over the Disney Parks announcements that include plans for not one, but TWO Star Wars Lands!!! We also learned about plans for Toy Story Land, Avatar Land, and planned parks/attractions on other continents!
Star Wars Land
The rumors of a Star Wars park expansion that have been flying for months are finally confirmed! And, they were confirmed in a BIG way when Bob Iger delighted fans with the news that a completely immersive Star Wars Land experience is coming to not one, but TWO parks – Disneyland and Hollywood Studios!!
“I am thrilled to announce the next chapter in the long and exciting history between Disney Parks and Star Wars. We are creating a jaw-dropping new world that represents our largest single themed land expansion ever. These new lands at Disneyland and Walt Disney World will transport guests to a whole new Star Wars planet, including an epic Star Wars adventure that puts you in the middle of a climactic battle between the First Order and the Resistance.”
Look at how cool that concept art looks!! My boys are absolutely going to lose their minds over this! The 14-acre area will be THE largest single-themed land expansion ever! And, each Star Wars Land will feature two signature attractions, including a customized secret mission on the Millennium Falcon and an epic Star Wars adventure that puts guests in the middle of a climactic battle. Amazing! There’s been no official word yet on a timeline or exact locations inside each park, but there’s a lot to be excited about. In the meantime, Disney will be doing Star Wars enhancements and new experiences (starting as soon as spring 2016) in both parks. So, stay tuned for more detailed information!!
Toy Story Land
Can you believe Disney-Pixar is celebrating the 20th Anniversary of the one that started it all?! Just typing that makes me feel so old! So, Toy Story fans everywhere will be thrilled to know that Toy Story Land (similar in concept and detail to Cars Land in California) is also coming to Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World! Talk about some BIG changes for that park!
No word again on timeline, but here’s a few things we DO know…
- Guests will enter Toy Story Land through Andy’s backyard where they’ll “shrink down to “toy size”.
- Toy Story Midway Mania will get a third track
- There will be an Alien Saucers attraction as one of the anchor rides (but beware The Claw!)
- There will be a family-friendly coaster in which guests will ride on the back of Slinky Dog!
Avatar Land (Pandora: The World of Avatar)
We’ve known about the Avatar Land addition at Walt Disney World’s Animal Kingdom for quite some time, but more details were announced on this project during the 2015 D23 Expo as well! To help share more about all the exciting details, Avatar director James Cameron took the stage. The world will feature floating mountains, a bioluminescent forest, and the winged creatures known as Banshees. There will be a family water ride (with bioluminescence) as well as the E-ticket attraction AVATAR Flight of Passage, allowing guests to fly on a Banshee over the alien world! More changes will come to the Animal Kingdom as well with extended hours, an extended nightime safari experience, and nighttime spectacular show called “Rivers of Light”.
More exciting park changes…
- Soarin’ Ride Update – coming to both California Adventure and Epcot. Will be called Soarin’ Around the World
- Norway pavilion expansion at Epcot, including Frozen Ever After the ride (replacing Maelstrom).
- A new Disneyland park being built in Shanghai, China.
- The Iron Man Experience (the 1st Marvel attraction at any Disney park) will open in 2016 at Hong Kong Disney.
Here’s a little video peek at how the announcements occurred during the panel:
WOW!!! So many fun things happening in the next few years to come! So, be sure to stay tuned right here to the blog and other Disney outlets as more details and timelines get released!!
Which new Disney park attraction are you most excited about?
All images courtesy of Disney.