Disney has owned Lucasfilm for five years now, and self-professed Disney-phile Mark Hamill could not be happier with life in the Magic Kingdom.
With Star Wars Land still two years away, Disneyland is banking on another of its billion-dollar properties to draw visitors to the park over the coming months. Guardians of the Galaxy — Mission: Breakout!, a Marvel-ized reboot of the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror ride at Disney’s California Adventure designed by writer-director James Gunn, opened Thursday night in Anaheim, Calif. The attraction, which finds the Guardians trying to escape from the Collector’s universe-spanning museum of specimens and relics, is the anchor for the park’s Heroes of Summer initiative. Aside from the thrill ride, where visitors are lifted 30 stories high, then plunged into free fall, characters from the MCU will be stationed throughout for photo ops and meet-and-greets. Yahoo Movies attended the opening ceremonies for the Guardians ride; click through for the highlights of the gala event and a sneak peek inside Mission: Breakout!
The Marvel Universe just established its Hong Kong outpost. Thursday saw the grand opening of Iron Man Experience at Hong Kong Disneyland, the first Marvel-themed ride at a Disney park. Since acquiring Marvel in 2009 for $4.4 billion, Disney has leveraged the comic giant’s classic characters to launch a cinematic universe grossing more than $10 billion in worldwide box office.
That galaxy far, far away just got a little closer. Disney announced Thursday that construction teams in Orlando and Anaheim have officially broken ground on the Star Wars lands at Walt Disney World and Disneyland.
While Star Wars: The Force Awakens continues its assault on box-office records, Kylo Ren, Captain Phasma, and their First Order stormtrooper stooges will be invading Pasadena, California, on New Year’s Day as part of Disneyland’s entry in the 127th annual Rose Parade. This marks the first appearance by a Star Wars-themed float at the iconic parade since 2007, when George Lucas was the grand marshal leading a battalion of dancing stormtroopers, an Imperial marching band, hundreds of costumed characters, and an Endor float with Ewoks swinging in the branches. Star Wars Land and a Frozen ice castle populated by Olaf, Elsa, and Anna flank the centerpiece Sleeping Beauty Castle, where such characters as Mickie, Minnie, Donald, and Goofy will wave to the crowd.
A ‘Star Wars’ attraction ahead of Space Mountain at Disneyland (Getty/Disney) Andy Richter once controlled the universe, but unfortunately, he has no say over what happens in the Magic Kingdom. The theme park, which celebrated its 60th anniversary in 2015, has introduced several new Star Wars attractions already, including the Star Wars Launch Bay (a commercial hub for merchandise, video games, and more) and temporarily turning the classic Tomorrowland ride Space Mountain into Hyperspace Mountain.
Liam Hemsworth and Jennifer Lawrence in ‘The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 2′ (Lionsgate) In the dystopian future, being selected to step into the Arena of the annual Hunger Games will be a deadly stroke of bad luck. Lionsgate, the studio behind the monster-hit big-screen adaptations of author Suzanne Collins’ Hunger Games series, has long considered extending the life of the series with new, real-world attractions.