In April, Orlando, Florida hosted Star Wars Celebration, a not-quite annual fan gathering honoring the entire Star Wars Franchise. It was the 12th Star Wars Celebration held since 1999, and third in Orlando. And in this case, the choice of Orlando was no accident.
“There are a couple of those moments growing up that you always remember,” Disney Imagineer Scott Trowbridge said in the video. “For me, one of those was going to see Star Wars in the theater for the very first time. It took me on a journey to a world that felt so different.”
And in 2019, people can take that journey for real. “Wouldn't it be great...just to walk into the Cantina or one these experiences, or to sit on the Millenium Falcon, wouldn't that be great?” saidStar Wars Rebels producer Dave Filoni. “And now, this generation of kids is gonna get to have it."
Trowbridge agreed that the world turns Star Wars into something tangible, that you can experience with your senses. “One of the things I'm most excited about is inviting our guests into that Star Wars universe. Being able to see it in person and touch it, and to smell it and taste it, and kind of live that amazing Star Wars experience for themselves.”
“It's all the things that you've always wanted to do watching the movie that you never had a chance to do,” saidStar Wars creative director Doug Chiang. “Having this attraction will allow guests to really immerse themselves and feel as if they are really, truly visiting Star Wars.” The Star Wars universe is no longer fictional — it's real.
To achieve this, Disney and Lucasfilm had to team up in order to make Star Wars Land as realistic as possible. “We care a lot about making sure that the experience people have in the parks feels like an immersion into the story of Star Wars,” said Kiri Hart of LucasFilm Story Group. To do this, it was extremely important to get every detail exactly right.
However, not everything will be lifted straight from the movies. “There will be things in there that will feel very familiar, things in there that they've always wanted to see,” said Chiang. “But yet on top of that, we're also designing it and creating new experiences so that it will really enhance what the Star Wars universe is.”
At Celebration, the team shared some of the specifics about these new experiences made just for the land. For starters, the land takes guests to a remote village on a new planet somewhere on the Outer Rim. The Disney Parks Blog says the village “was once a busy crossroads along the old sub-lightspeed trade routes, but the prominence of the outpost has been bypassed with the rise of hyperspace travel.”
The blog also said that the village “has become a thriving port for smugglers, rogue traders and adventurers traveling between the frontier and uncharted space. It’s also a convenient safe-haven for others intent on avoiding the expanding reach of the First Order.” So the land lets you experience a new story, while also experiencing your favorite existing Star Wars stories.
Guests will have the opportunity to make the experience as interactive as they want. “There are going to be a ton of opportunities to help out and support the Resistance,” said Disney executive Asa Kalama. There will also be “lots of smugglers and bounty hunters who are looking for a little bit of help and might be willing to offer you up a side job, and for those of you who are interested in supporting The First Order, that will absolutely be an opportunity as well.”
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You can watch the video above to get the full preview of Star Wars Land. Hopefully that will be enough to hold you over until the land finally opens up in 2019. Although maybe they could get it to open sooner, if they would just use the Force.