Video and New Information on Star Tours: The Adventures Continue

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Disney has made available two new press releases, the first gives a brief overview of the attraction:

Overview: The power of the Force and the magic of Disney have combined to create “Star Tours – The Adventures Continue,” a new 3-D attraction set to open at Disney’s Hollywood Studios theme park. With an eye-popping digital presentation leveraging Dolby 3-D to deliver a vivid and realistic experience, a dramatic musical score and motion simulator-based technology, guests will be immersed in the Star Wars galaxy like never before on a theme park attraction. More than 50 story combinations are possible for guests to experience aboard Star Tours, so guests can enjoy the attraction multiple times without ever experiencing the same adventure.  In fact they never know where the Force will take them!

Opening Dates: May 20, 2011 (Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Fla), June 3, 2011 (Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, Calif.)

Attraction Locations: Walt Disney World Resort:  Disney’s Hollywood Studios theme park, Disneyland Resort: Tomorrowland, inside Disneyland park

Attraction Experience Time: Approximately 7 minutes (including boarding at Starspeeder gate), Actual show is approximately 5 minutes.

Height Requirement: 40 inches (102 cm) or taller

Attraction Designers, Writers and Creators: Walt Disney Imagineering, working with Lucasfilm Ltd. and Industrial Light & Magic.

Some famous Star Wars film characters guests can encounter (depending on which story they experience): R2-D2, C-3PO, Darth Vader, Boba Fett, Yoda, Sebulba, Admiral Ackbar, Chewbacca, Jar Jar Binks, Princess Leia

Some famous Star Wars film planets and destinations guests can encounter (depending on which story they experience): Kashyyyk, Hoth, Naboo, Coruscant, Tatooine, The Death Star (above the planet Geonosis)

The second release has some quotes from some individuals worth noting:

Tom Fitzgerald, Executive VP & Senior Creative Executive, Walt Disney Imagineering:

On where in the Star Wars timeline the new storyline takes place:

“In the end, after numerous discussions, we decided to place our storyline between the two sets of Star Wars trilogies, giving the project the working title ‘Star Tours 3.5.’ This time period gave our show team the ability to tap into the very best of the Star Wars characters and adventures.”

“But turning the clock back also required some interesting changes for the Star Tours show. The Starspeeder 3000 would need to be an earlier model, the Starspeeder 1000, with a new pilot (especially since Rex, the original pilot, opens the original show saying it’s his first flight!)”

On filming scenes on a Hollywood soundstage:

“We occupied a large soundstage in Hollywood to film a key sequence of the new show. Anthony Daniels flew in from London to bring C-3PO to life on the stage, as well as workshop the script with our writer Steve Spiegel.”

“On the immense soundstage, our production team re-created – full size – a portion of the Starspeeder 1000, so we could film it from multiple angles. Later, the effects wizards at Industrial Light & Magic, under the direction of Bill George, completed the scene, adding in a whole range of droids and characters, and expanding the scale and scope of the scene.”

On new characters created for the attraction:

“All Star Tours Starspeeder 1000s are flown using the latest AC-series Tour Droids. And in fact, our initial plans were for our flight to be piloted by AC-38 better known as ‘Ace.’ However, in discussions with George Lucas during the course of our production, we decided to take the story in a very different direction. So while AC-38 is supposed to be our pilot, by the time we actually take off, the droid sitting in the pilot’s seat will be none other than C-3PO!”

“We also created a new ‘spokesbot’ for Star Tours, modeled after the WA-7 ‘Waitress Droid’ from Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones. George Lucas suggested the name ‘Aly San San,’ in reference to Allison Janney, the wonderful actress who provides the voice for this new character. We had a terrific time with Allison in the recording sessions for the show – she brought a lot of warmth and humor to the part.”

On Star Wars characters included in the attraction:

“One of our goals for the new Star Tours show was to pack as much Star Wars into the attraction as possible. That meant traveling to different planets, and meeting up with classic characters from the saga.”

On Star Wars characters included in the attraction (Cont.):

“R2-D2 and C-3PO are back, reprising their roles in the pre-show, and taking on bigger roles (especially C-3PO) in our Starspeeder adventures.”

“It wouldn’t be a Star Wars adventure without Darth Vader. The Dark Lord of the Sith will be accompanied by legions of stormtroopers and some new “skytroopers,” designed especially for our show. Boba Fett, everyone’s favorite bounty hunter, also will be after us, as well as an assortment of nasty droids and creatures.”

“Balancing out the villains are some classic good guys – and even a princess! Master Yoda, Admiral Ackbar and Princess Leia will appear in the show to help guide our adventures. We may even run into Chewbacca along the way!”

On Star Wars destinations included in the attraction:

“We’re going to Tatooine for the Boonta Eve Podrace and to Coruscant. Additional destinations include a visit to the beautiful planet of Naboo, a rare tour of the Wookiee planet of Kashyyyk and a trip to the icy planet Hoth.”

“Of course, no Star Tours adventure would be complete without an unexpected visit to the Death Star, this time above the planet Geonosis. These destinations will be combined in more than 50 different story adventures, so you’ll never know where the Force will take you!”

Anthony Daniels, Actor (C-3PO):

“Wow! Back in the gold suit for the first time since ‘Revenge of the Sith,’ but on this occasion in front of a beloved Starspeeder, a bit like the one R2 and I’d repaired every day since Disneyland first opened the Star Tours Spaceport all those years ago. I’d enjoyed being a part of the original Star Tours, one of the most wonderful jobs I ever had. I’d been alerted that amazing things were in store for passengers on the new Starspeeder, and for me too, and so here I was again, working with many of the same creative teams, with even more spin and excitement than the first time.”

Disney has also released video from inside the attraction:

About the author

Tom Corless

Tom has been regularly visiting the Walt Disney World® Resort from the time he was 4 months old. While he has made countless visits in the last 28 years, he did not become a truly active member in the Disney fan community until the summer of 2007, when he decided to launch the WDW News Today website and podcast. Tom has since become an Orlando-local and is a published author on Walt Disney World.
Contact Tom at [email protected]