We still have more than a year to wait until the arrival of Star Wars: Episode VIII and more than two years until the long awaited Avatar 2. Disney is looking to help ease the pain of that long wait though, because they have just released some new information and some new concept art for the upcoming Star Wars Land attraction and the Avatar theme park attraction that will be invading their parks soon. First up, some new info about Star Wars Land.
Attractions Magazine is reporting that a scene from the upcoming Star Wars Episode VIII will be included as part of Star Tours in the future. The official Disney Parks website confirmed this and they also decided to shed a little more light on what exactly that will entail. Here is what they had to say.
“Walt Disney Imagineering and Lucasfilm teams are currently in production to add an exciting new mission to the attraction based on elements from Star Wars Episode 8.”
They are staying tight-lipped about the movie, but we now know it will influence Star Wars Land, which is cool. We also learned during a Disney anniversary special that aired on ABC earlier this year that one of the main attractions at this Star Wars theme park expansion would be a full-scale version of the Millennium Falcon that visitors will be able to check out. Patrons will be able to walk around the ship, get hands on with it and most importantly, be able to fly it. Sort of. It will be a flight simulation, because it’s a ride and sadly, not a real spaceship. But that is close enough for most of us and with the detail it looks like Disney is putting into the expansion, it should be closer to the real thing than any of us ever expected to get. Also, the Disney Parks blog released a new piece of art, showing what the theme park will look like at night. As it turns out, pretty awesome.
In addition to this news about Star Wars Land, Attractions Magazine had a decent amount of info about the new Avatar theme park that Disney is opening, which will be called Pandora – The World of Avatar. It was announced by Walt Disney Parks & Resorts Chairman Bob Chapek at D23’s Destination D: Amazing Adventures event in Orlando that the attraction will open will open at Disney’s Animal Kingdom in summer 2017. Chapek talked about some of the newly revealed concept art for the park, which you can check out below and revealed the entry bridge to Pandora, which will lead patrons into the park. Here is how it is being described.
“This bridge was built during a time when a destructive company called the RDA – Resources Development Administration came to Pandora. Now that they are long gone, nature is breaking down evidence of their presence. This bridge will soon serve as an entry into the base camp of Alpha Centauri Expeditions, the eco-tour group that will host explorers on their Pandora adventure.”
Aside from the entry to the park and some of the story elements that Disney Imagineering and Lightstorm Entertainment came up with for Pandora – The World of Avatar, Bob Chapek also revealed a few other pieces of concept art. One of the pieces offers a first look at the new Satu’li Canteen, the main dining destination in the park. Aside from Avatar inspired food, there will be Na’vi art and cultural items on display as well as for purchase. A drink destination by the name of Poungu Pongu was also revealed in another separate piece of concept art, but it was very much in line with the same aesthetic presented in the other photos.
We now know that Pandora – The World of Avatar will open next summer, but there is still no word on exactly when Star Wars land will be opening up to the public. Since it seems like elements of Star Wars Episode VIII are going to be incorporated, it may be a while. You can check out all of the new concept art for both attractions for yourself below.