Whether you’ve heard the news or not, D23 revealed some major jaw dropping news at their D23 Expo! I am referring to the news that came from the Parks and Recreation Panel! Can you just imagine being the lucky one who got to witness this news first hand? Amazing. This will be your fact sheet. It was a lot to digest at first. I literally had to reread the news a few times! Let’s dig in shall we?
Star wars Land now has an offical name, Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. It is scheduled to be open in Summer 2019.
A model was revealed and the details are outstanding. See for yourself!
Toy Story Land to Open in Summer 2018.
Slinky Dog Dash – themed family coaster.
Alien Swirling Saucers – an attraction similar to Mater’s Junkyard Jamboree in Disney California Adventure, themed around the Claw and Little Green Aliens.
The Great Movie Ride has been the last attraction from Disney-MGM Studios’ (the former name of Disney’s Hollywood Studios) opening day to remain in operation. However, the attraction will close on August 13, 2017 to make way for Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway, leaving the park with no original attractions. Disney’s contract with TCM had expired and they lost rights to the movie scenes shown inside.
Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway will feature a new story and a new singable theme song as well as a new experience “2 1/2 D.” New technologies that turn the flat world of a colorful cartoon short into a “dimensional display of amazingness.”
Mission Space simulator training missions will both be getting refreshed. The more intense Orange mission will be updated with new more visually stunning graphics. The Green adventure will be something entirely new, and more family friendly, that focuses on an orbital adventure around planet Earth. The goal is to welcome even younger cadets to join the adventure for the first time. This was not my favorite ride. I’m very happy they are making changes! Mission Space is scheduled to open late summer of 2017.
Space Restaurant (Official name has not been announced) will be built adjoining the future world Mission Space attraction. It will be operated by the Patina restaurant group which also operates Tutto Italia and Via Napoli in EPCOT and Morimoto Asia and soon The Edison and related venues in Disney Springs. Guests will be dining in a floating space station as the Earth tumbles by underneath. I would expect some state of the art digital technology to make the illusion. The opening date is TBD.
Guardians of the Galaxy is replacing Ellen’s Energy Adventure. The building will be gutted and reimagined. Ellen’s Energy Adventure will close August 13th, 2017 and the new ride will open before 2021.
China Pavilion will feature an updated film with new technology, a brand new seamless Circle-Vision show for the China pavilion. The opening of the film is TBD.
Ratatouille attraction will be coming to the France Pavilion, similar to the attraction in Disneyland Paris featuring trackless ride technology. Opening in 2021.
Epcot Front Entrance – Leave a Legacy will be ripped down for a new entrance. Below is a rendering of how it will look.
New Theatre (official name TBD) will be based on the iconic Willis Wood theater in 1920s Kansas City, where Walt lived after he left Marceline. Plans call for the new theater to be built in what is currently backstage areas between Main Street U.S.A. and Tomorrowland.
To read on it’s history, click HERE.
Willis Wood Theatre
Tron (Biggest news in my opinion) The new Tron attraction will sit in an entirely new area right next to the Space Mountain attraction. TRON Lightcycle Power Run attraction at Shanghai Disneyland is a coaster-style attraction where riders board a train of two-wheeled Lightcycles. The interesting part of this concept art is the train tracks. Will the train go through the Tron structure? Expect it’s opening in 2021.
Star Wars Hotel is coming! I think this news broke the internet! D23 didn’t give a ton of details, but this we do know. All of the cast members will be in costume and in character. Each guest will get a storyline and the hotel will take place on a space ship. Meaning, the windows will only show space. Are you freaking out? Crazy stuff!
Side note: They are saying land was cleared near Hollywood Studios – possibly an entrance to the Star wars Galazy’s Edge in Hollywood Studios!
Disney Skyliner transportation system will connect Disney’s Art of Animation, Pop Century and Caribbean Beach resorts and other locations with Disney’s Hollywood Studios and the International Gateway at Epcot. And many of the gondolas with Disney Skyliner will feature favorite Disney characters. Opening date TBD.
Minnie vehicles (Think Uber) will take you everywhere you want to go at the Walt Disney World Resort, and you’ll ride in Minnie’s classic style. It officially launches July 26th and will initially be available at Disney’s Yacht and Beach Club Resorts and the Caribbean Beach Resort. Additional locations will announced in the near future.
Disney’s Riviera Resort – DVC’s 15th Resort resort will be located near Epcot and guests will be able to see the nighttime spectaculars at both Disney’s Hollywood Studios and at Epcot. The new skyway transportation system will connect the new resort to other areas on Walt Disney World property. Disney’s Riviera Resort will open in the fall of 2019.
……and finally, this was NOT annouced as expected, Journey of Imagination will possibly get a refurbishment as well. There is talk of Inside Out taking over the space. With my research, I don’t think Figment will be going anywhere, but possibly being the “mascot” for Epcot. Time will tell!
So many exciting things to look forward to! I hope this post gave you a good summary of what’s to come!