Dozens of rumors about Disney’s future plans have been swirling around for some time now. Well, Disney officials have finally confirmed most of those rumors with concrete facts and opening dates. It’s been difficult to keep track of every rumor, even for the most dedicated Disney fans… so we’ve outlined just about every rumor we could find and listed the cold hard facts…
Star Wars Themed Resort
A new Star Wars-inspired resort where guests will become part of a Star Wars story is planned. According to Bob Chapek, Chairman of Walt Disney Parks & Resorts, “It’s unlike anything that exists today.” “From the second you arrive, you will become a part of a Star Wars story! You’ll immediately become a citizen of the galaxy and experience all that entails, including dressing up in the proper attire. Once you leave Earth, you will discover a starship alive with characters, stories, and adventures that unfold all around you. It is 100% immersive, and the story will touch every single minute of your day, and it will culminate in a unique journey for every person who visits.”
Disney Skyliner Gondolas
A new transportation system will be built that will transport guests around Walt Disney Resort. Gondolas will provide guests with connections between Epcot and Disney’s Hollywood Studios with Disney’s Art of Animation, Pop Century and Caribbean Beach resorts, including the new Disney Riviera Resort (see below).
Minnie Van Service
The Skyliner Gondolas won’t be the only new transportation option at Disney World. A fleet of “Minnie Vans” will offer a “point to point” transportation service. The Uber-like ride-hailing service will take you anywhere you want to go at the Walt Disney World Resort!
UPDATE: Lyft, a ridesharing transportation network company based in San Francisco, has launched its “Minne Van” service on July 31 for Walt Disney World Resort guests. Guests simply can open the Lyft app or call to have the private van service, which will take them anywhere on the resort’s property.
Disney’s Riviera Resort
Located near Epcot, Disney’s Riviera Resort will be built as part of the Disney Vacation Club, a membership-based vacation ownership program. Opening in the fall, 2019.
Located in Tomorrowland, right next to Space Mountain, a new Tron attraction will be added. Based on Shanghai Disneyland’s Tron Lightcycle Power Run, it will be Disney’s most “intense” roller coaster. Riders board “Lightcycles” and transport riders into a videogame-like grid. The Tron attraction is planning to open in time for Disney World’s 50th anniversary in 2021.
Main Street Theater
A new theater inspired by Kansas City’s Willis Wood Theater will be added to Main Street USA. The theater will include world class entertainment. Bob Chapek, Chairman of Walt Disney Parks & Resorts said. “It’s been a huge hit at the Disneyland Resort, and I’m sure many of you have seen it. This new theater at Walt Disney World continues that streak by bringing a new venue for world-class entertainment to the world’s biggest park.”
Guardians of the Galaxy
A new attraction based on the popular Marvel movie franchise will replace “Ellen’s Energy Adventure” in the former Universe of Energy building at Epcot. The new “Guardians of the Galaxy” attraction will be based on Peter Quill’s (aka Star Lord) visit to Epcot when he was a child. Disney California Adventure park debuted a similar experience earlier this year and has become on of the most popular attractions at that park. “Ellen’s Energy Adventure will close August 12, 2017, and construction of the new attraction will begin shortly thereafter. According to Disney officials the new attraction will be open in time for the 50th anniversary of Walt Disney World Resort in 2021.
Based on Disney-Pixar’s Ratatouille, this new 4-D attraction “shrink” guests to the size of Remy, the gourmet chef and participate in a chase across the kitchen in sophisticated trackless vehicles. A similar attraction opened in Walt Disney Park in Paris in 2014. Ratatouille will be added to the France Pavilion in Epcot’s World Showcase. According to Disney officials the new attraction will be open in time for the 50th anniversary of Walt Disney World Resort in 2021.
The current mission to Mars at Mission:Space will add another adventure… an orbital journey above earth. The new mission, geared toward younger children is scheduled to blast off later this summer… August 13th to be exact.
Mission: Space Restaurant
A new restaurant next to the Mission: Space attraction will offer great food with spectacular view high above earth. The new table-service restaurant that will transport diners to a space station high above Earth.
New China Pavilion Film
A new “Circle-Vision 360” movie about China will be presented in-the-round at this World Showcase pavilion. A new projection system will replace the multiple screens with one seemless screen making the experience that much more realistic.
Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge
A new name for Disney’s 14 acre Star Wars Land in Florida and California has finally been announced. “Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge attractions are being built on a scale and detail that Disney has never attempted before. Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge will open in 2019, first at the Disneyland Resort and later in the year at the Walt Disney World Resort. Two major attractions will highlight this land.
Star Wars Battle
Visitors are dropped right in the middle of a raging battle between the Resistance and the First Order. Guests will feel like they are inside a Star Destroyer and that “the scale of the attraction is unlike anything we’ve ever done before.”
Millennium Falcon Attraction
Riders are given the controls of the Millennium Falcon. Your mission is critical and you pilot your ship into hyperspace. Depending on how well you perform in battle you’ll earn galactic credits.
Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway
Scheduled to replace the Great Movie Ride at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, this new ride-through attraction is Disney’s first “mickey-themed ride attraction. Based on the old Mickey Mouse cartoon shorts, the ride will feature a “sing-able and lovable theme song” and will be presented in “2-and-a-half-D”. Passengers will be transported into a flat movie screen and on to a runaway train… operated by Goofy!
Toy Story Land
Expected to open at Walt Disney World in the Summer of 2018, this new land will invite visitors into Andy’s backyard for adventures among his playthings. Toy Story Land will feature two new themed attractions.
Slinky Dog Dash
This new attraction is a family-level roller coaster where riders will experience a dazzling array of twist, turns and drops designed to make the coaster ride like a slinky toy, coiling and stretching along the track.
Alien Swirling Saucers
This new attraction is designed as a toy play set that Andy got from Pizza Planet, inspired by the first Toy Story film. Aliens are flying around in their toy flying saucers and trying to capture your rocket toy vehicle with “The Claw.”
Rumors recently became reality with the opening of Pandora: The World of Avatar at Disney’s Animal Kingdom in May. For a rundown on this new land, see First Look: Pandora – The World of Avatar at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.
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