BREAKING: Leaked Image Reveals Ride Vehicle for AVATAR “Flying Banshee” Attraction at Disney’s Animal Kingdom

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Concept Art for Flight of Passage attraction, Pandora: the World of AVATAR at Disney's Animal Kingdom theme park
Concept Art for Flight of Passage attraction, Pandora: the World of AVATAR at Disney’s Animal Kingdom theme park

Since the Flight of Passage attraction was announced, we have wondered how Disney would achieve such an attraction, where guests were promised that they would get to ride on a “real Banshee” from the AVATAR film series. Well, the following image was sent our way courtesy of an inside source and is a screen cap of some footage of Imagineers testing out the new ride which will open with Pandora: the World of AVATAR at Disney’s Animal Kingdom this Summer.

Now, obviously, it is not the clearest image, but so is the nature of such leaked things. You can see that 2 people are mounted on a Banshee creature and are riding the attraction with the large Soarin’ type projection screen in front of them.

It might be possible to seat more than two guests on each, but it is unclear due to the clarity of the image. I would assume that children 7 and under would need to ride with someone 14 or older, as is the rule with many other attractions at Walt Disney World.

This is the structure to which the dozens of Banshees will be mounted, holding guests while they fly in Flight of Passage, Pandora: The World of AVATAR
This is the structure to which the dozens of Banshees will be mounted, holding guests while they fly in Flight of Passage, Pandora: The World of AVATAR

The image above, from the Disney Parks Magic Christmas Celebration, appears to show the ride system before the installation of the Banshee vehicles that will face the large screen.

We were promised that we would be able to feel the Banshee breathing and all of its motions below us when we ride the attraction. Based on the leaked image above, I may actually believe the Disney PR machine for once. If each guest really is boarding their own personal animal, I think we are in for something truly amazing. I think even the most bitter AVATAR project detractors will have to look at this as impressive.

But what do you think? Are you excited for Flight of Passage and Pandora: The World of AVATAR?

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]

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Brittany
Guest
Brittany

That looks seriously amazing. The vehicles seem similar to the TRON ones in Shanghai, except in front of a screen :) I have my fingers crossed, though I know it’s unlikely, for a soft opening while we’re there the first week of May

Jeffrey bentz
Guest
Jeffrey bentz

I was just on bashee ride disappointed they say you have you one bashee you don’t. I was just in china 3 weeks ago went on pirates ride there best ride in disney parks. Boat ride in pandora terrible don’t waste time.

Kevin
Guest
Kevin

so its soarin but instead of a seat your straddling a banshee

Tim
Guest
Tim

It appears that there are two sets of legs on the ride vehicle, and it also appears there is a “handlebar” just behind the head (visible against the screen background).

Based on the length of the Banshee, plus the size of the individual in the white shirt, and what looks like a denimed leg with shoe, plus handle, I’d say it surely appears to hold 2 persons.

Kevin
Guest
Kevin

So whats keeping you on ? a seat belt ?

Scott Dolan
Guest
Scott Dolan

Looks like something akin to a lap bar is sitting across the upper abdomen of the rider.

Andrew
Guest
Andrew

its been reported on other sites that its just the prototype, real vehicle is different. This vehicle is not possible in the setup for the ride.

Disney Pete
Guest
Disney Pete

That’s exactly what it looks like

JimV
Guest
JimV

I imagined the Banshees on a track so you get full 360 degrees of view. This will allow the wings to flap since each person is single file on the track. So maybe not what I expected and its Soarin’ 2.0. The side view of Soarin’ isn’t much so it’s not as immersive as possible.

Brian cannon
Guest
Brian cannon

Was also hoping for a spiderman type ride. Disney is lacking a ride of this quality. Whilst universal seems to keep upping it’s game. Come on disney! And put some fun back in epcot while u at it.

Disney Pete
Guest
Disney Pete

Spiderman (and its exact same copy Transformers) are lame. Don’t even get me started on Skull Island which is the same thing as well only way shorter

Drew Winner
Guest
Drew Winner

You will get your Spiderman (like) ride when Stars Wars Land opens…

Kieran Hayag
Guest
Kieran Hayag

The description of the Battle Escape attraction at SWL isn’t going to be 100% like Spiderman. The ride vehicles will be similar, but the actual ride will use over 200 full sized animatronics. You’ll also have to get off at certain points in the ride to explore the environment you’re in and to complete missions.

Dissapointed
Guest
Dissapointed

Just another motion simulator in front of a big screen. Disney is getting so lazy. Everything Disney does at its theme parks anymore seems to be focused on video screens. Purely lazy and dissapointing at best.

Liam
Guest
Liam

For goodness sake you are not even an engineer or designer. You do not know the hard work any of this stuff takes to conceptualize and actually be elaborated. You haven’t even sat on a banshee so you can’t speak before trying it. We have worked so hard to come up with something unique and revolutionary , please do not underestimate or delegitimize the quality of what we are able to create. We hope to see you soon. Do not seek to change your mind. Thousands of others will appreciate the hard work.

Ryan from PA
Guest
Ryan from PA

I don’t think anyone has actually sat on a banshee because they are like … not real.

Tsu'tey
Guest
Tsu'tey

KEHE! FO NGAY!…. NÌSÌLPEY

Anonomouse
Guest
Anonomouse

I totally don’t mean this in a cruel way, but I can’t help but picture you sitting on a motionless Banshee quietly sobbing as you wrote this. I’m sure it will be amazing, I just hope that unlike most amazing technological advanced attractions that it doesn’t immediately get broken by stupid teenagers. Are they stab proof? I imagine a teenager wanting to having the desire to stab a Banshee to see what would happen.

Disappointed
Guest
Disappointed

What’s actually hysterically funny here is…I seriously am both a designer and an engineer. No lie.

Sara Jacobson
Guest
Sara Jacobson

You are all so f’ing out of touch with reality, I am amazed. All I see is a blurry pixelated picture that could be someone sitting on a carousel pony.

You Go Girl!
Guest
You Go Girl!

Ha ha ha THIS! It actually looks like a picture of an image on someone’s monitor, hence the pixelation.

Timothy Scott Lovell
Guest
Timothy Scott Lovell

No interest @ ALL, the dentist seems more appealing

Ryan B
Guest
Ryan B

Is it really more of an effort to type “at”?

Progressive Music Lover
Guest
Progressive Music Lover

This ride looks amazing. I’m very hopeful that Disney will continue with the pro environmental message that that the movie presented so well. My partner and I are really looking forward to joining the Navi when Pandora finally opens in May!!

Don
Guest
Don

I’m sure this ride will be great, but something makes me think it will be like Despicable Me/Simpson ride at Universal. It may be a glorified version of the Universal rides though.

Nick McLamb
Guest
Nick McLamb

All of you are just mad that Tom beat your favorite website again at getting news. #dealwithit

Also, this ride continues to gain steam on the hype train. If all of you are so upset about it, I’ll gladly take your spot in line once it opens!

Progressive Music Lover
Guest
Progressive Music Lover

Typical response from a mean spirited Trump voter. Why don’t you people just go away!

#BowlingGreenStrong
Guest
#BowlingGreenStrong

What exactly did he say that makes you and your partner think he’s a Trump voter? Based on his clearly unabashed love for Tom, I’d have to assume he wrote Tom in for every choice. That being said, please don’t go around accusing any person that says something you and your partner don’t like of being a Trump supporter. All it does is make the real Trump supporters feel legitimized and that all liberals are whiny losers that are just upset that we lost and they’ll continue to be absolutely blinded by the constant lies and propaganda that they’re being… Read more »

Bingo Bob
Guest
Bingo Bob

I think this is going to be a lot more than people are anticipating. I don’t think you start out by sitting on a big plastic dragon. It think this will look like a generic ride seat… the room goes black, and then all of the sudden it’s a dragon and you’re flying. That would blow people away. It looks like there’s a movable wall that encloses the ride vehicles from the theatre so that dragon head comes from out of the guests view… same with the wings. Knowing James Cameron’s love of innovative 3D / video technology I bet… Read more »

Mike
Guest
Mike

Do you have any idea how theming works? So what’s the storyline? Here everyone, sit in these plastic chairs and then Banshees will swoop in and pick you up. The wow moment is when you first sit down on a vehicle that is moving and acting like it’s alive, not whoa I was in a chair and now I’m suddenly flying. You don’t board Mission Space and immediately start in space. Even Soarin has you “take off” on a runway, which is really what can be best compared to this ride.

Bingo Bob
Guest
Bingo Bob

Thanks Mike! Sounds like you’re really fun at parties! I attended the Destination D event in November where James Cameron and Joe Rohde gave us more details about the attractions and we saw several pieces of concept art/photographs that haven’t been released to the public yet. There was an illustration of a black seat with handles which guests would board. This seat looked like a combination of this photograph and the new Tron coaster’s seats in Shanghai (that Disney happens to have a patent on). They revealed the story to us at the presentation. Guests take over their own avatar… Read more »

Truth Bombs
Guest
Truth Bombs

Damn… Bingo Bob with the mic drop.

Didledee
Guest
Didledee

Spiderman at Universal and moreso the Harry Potter one under the castle are incredible rides. Was hoping we’d see that here. Was very disappointed with Soarin, it’s lame.

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