Visitors to the Walt Disney World theme park in Florida and Disneyland Resort in California will soon be able to take a seat in the cockpit of the legendary Millennium Falcon and pilot the ship themselves as part of the upcoming Star Wars-themed lands.
According to Insider, the details of the newest additions to Disney's already excitement-packed American theme parks have been announced at D23: Destination D conference in Orlando, Florida. These two lands will mirror each other in both their attractions and general layout.
The intergalactic adventure lands, known as "Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge," will be 14-acres in size and will officially open at Disneyland in the summer of 2019, and then later in Disney World in the fall of 2019. The parks will be set on the fictional planet of Batuu where guests are invited to "travel into a thriving port of rogue traders, droids and strange creatures," according to the Walt Disney World website.
This fictional land certainly promises to be an immersive Star Wars experience, complete with Jedi training, star tours and photo ops with your favorite characters. But perhaps the most exciting news to come out of the conference is details of the brand new attraction called "Millennium Falcon: Smuggler's Run."
This ride sees guests board an interactive version of the starship famously piloted by Han Solo and his faithful Wookie sidekick, Chewbacca. While Han and Chewie, unfortunately, won't be present for blast-off, guests will still be able to immerse themselves in all the high-flying adventure that comes with piloting the fastest ship in the galaxy.
The cockpit has 200 controls and, using real-time video render technology invented by Industrial Light & Magic, the ship will respond to whatever the guests command it to do.
"It's a personalized intergalactic ride - live your own Star Wars story," Scott Trowbridge, the Disney creative executive who is overseeing all of the Galaxy's Edge projects, told The New York Times. "If you crash into a wall, that's what you will see out the cockpit window."
A teaser trailer for the ride reveals it will have a number of seats available for guests in the cockpit and each person will have free-range of the controls to pilot the ship however they please. A large window at the front of the ride lets the visitors see their adventure and any impending threats that may require some creative maneuvers to overcome.
In addition to the Millennium Falcon ride, a second attraction called "Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance" sees passengers board an Imperial Star Destroyer to be greeted by 50 audio-animatronic Stormtroopers. This ride will also feature a thrilling face-to-face encounter with none other than Kylo Ren, supreme leader of the First Order and ill-tempered intergalactic villain extraordinaire.
Star Wars film franchise composer John Williams will be creating new music for the themed lands and will no doubt provide an excellent score for visitors to enjoy while immersing themselves in a galaxy that will no longer so far, far away.
Another exciting addition to the parks is not exactly an attraction but will still provide visitors with all plenty of galactic excitement. The construction of an immersive Star Wars-themed hotel was announced back in 2017, and according to Travel and Leisure, this resort will let guests partake in an immersive multi-day adventure within the property.
Although we still haven't heard when this hotel will be opened to guests, we do know that it plans to stimulate the experience of sleeping onboard a luxury starship piloting through the galaxy, complete with video-screen windows offering views of space. Guests will also be encouraged to wear Star Wars costumes to truly get a taste of life aboard a ship.