"Adventure. Heh! Excitement. A Jedi craves not these things," Yoda instructs Luke Skywalker in 'The Empire Strikes Back' But WE DO!
Disney theme parks are undoubtedly one of the best in the world. They always amaze and astonish you. It's not just fun for the children but the adults have a blast too. Disney made so many dreams come true when they announced that they would be opening a Star Wars based theme park. Every generation today has watched either the old movies or the new ones and love it. People can't wait for it to finally open. Disney recently announced that the new theme lands will be opened for the public on May 31 at Disneyland in California and on August 29 at Disney's Hollywood studios in Florida. Disney has also revealed that the theme lands in both locations are made almost identical to each other. Playing in a make-believe Star Wars world as kids has finally come to an end with the opening of these theme parks. However, not all rides will be available when the park opens.
On their website, Disney announced that one of the rides, 'Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance', will not be opened until "later this year". The exact dates have not been mentioned. Well, there's a lot more to explore other than just this one ride. Besides, who said that people will be going there just once? The website also mentions that guests planning to visit the new area at Disneyland between May 31 and June 23, 2019, will need valid theme park admission and a no-cost reservation. So it's best we all start reserving our tickets right away, we don't want to be stuck, waiting for a year to get to see the land of galactic dreams.
All the books, graphic novels, and the 10 (and counting) feature films released have lacked one thing: giving the audience a truly physical experience of what it is to be like in the Star Wars universe. This includes not just the look (which was provided by the movies) but the feel, the smell, and even the taste of Star Wars. The theme park is said to be very detailed. It is architecturally accurate with 14-acre playgrounds filled with rides, unique restaurants, shopping centers which you cannot find anywhere outside, and even character interactions. What more could we ask for?
The park is calling its Star Wars theme park expansion 'Galaxy's Edge' and just like in the movies, is going to introduce its audience to a whole new world. This one is known as 'Batuu'. It is very Earth-like and is filled with giant ancient petrified tree stumps (up to 135 feet in the parks), located in the uncharted Outer Rim. The main town is called 'Blackspire Outpost', it is named after a mysteriously dark tree stump. The town was once along the main trading route but has now become a haven for smugglers and traders. The best thing about this themed land is that it has a storyline and you are playing a character in it. Theme parks usually don't need storylines to attract people but when the theme is Star Wars, it's best to be authentic, I guess.
When you enter you are told that the First Order has just arrived. They are looking for evidence of the Resistance. This is when you are invited to be a character and get a sense of the narrative. It's almost like the epic myth continues from the movies out into the real world. There will be two interactive attractions (aka "rides") at both parks that combine and propel the tech mastery of Lucasfilm and Disney into hyperspace. They both are said to be humungous.
One is called 'Rise of the Resistance', and it's a cinematic experience with a ride inside, as Disney Executive Creative Director John Larena described it. The adventure takes you inside the corridors of a rebel base inside sacred caves and onto a troop transport ship where you will be captured by a Star Destroyer and then thrown in a prison cell block. The rest of the story and surprises are still under wraps. One other thing we know is that the ride is going to be one of the longest in the park and will require most of the Disney cast members to join in on the fun and action.
The other attraction, 'Smugglers Run', will let you pilot the Millenial Falcon on a cargo mission. It is a 100-foot-long movie-perfect Falcon that can be viewed at all angles, even from above. Even a casual "Star Wars" fan will get all the feels stepping into the famous white Chiclet-paneled corridors of the Falcon and then into the main hold, where you can sit at the holographic "Let the Wookiee win" dejarik (aka chess) board. This Smugglers Run mission is directed by a next-generation animatronic Hondo Ohnaka, a character that has only been shown in the games, books, and the animated series Star Wars: The Clone Wars (which is now available on Netflix). Each ride in the smugglers run is said to be unique. No more spoilers about the rides are going to be given.
Aside from the Resistance and First Order areas, the town's look and on-site design are reminiscent of Mos Eisley and Jabba the Hutt's lair on Tatooine, and Takodana from Episode VII, as much as that of real-world cities such as Marrakesh, Istanbul, and Kathmandu. It is completed with vendor stalls and a market place where Batuu souvenirs are sold. The main town, Blackspire Outpost is going to be astonishing. The park is said to be one of the best Disney has ever come up with. It includes special effects, animatronic droids and creatures acting out, and Disney cast members who will embody local characters.
You aren't just playing a character but can also dress like one. Everyone working in Batuu is dressed in costume, so why not you mix and match something and fit right in? Further immersion into this cool world will be available through a new Galaxy's Edge mode of the Disney Play app. So if you're stuck waiting in a long line you can receive missions and messages from other characters. All you need to do is create a profile on the app. The app also allows you to hack open doors and translate languages. Disney and Lucasfilms' layered strategy of completely involving people into this make-believe world will definitely delight fans at all levels, which is basically the definition of great art and storytelling.