Last year, I followed the D23 Expo in the United States and published some exciting news from that convention including the announcements of Guardians of the Galaxy coming to Epcot‘s Future World and the gondola transportation system coming to a few Disney resort hotels and theme parks.
D23: Japan recently took place and Disney released some more information about these and other attractions coming to parks all over the world.
Disney World Announcements
Today, we’re going to focus on D23: Japan announcements regarding Walt Disney World Resort in particular. Before we get to the major announcements, here are a couple brief updates:
- Toy Story Land will open at the beginning of summer 2018. That’s not too far away!
- Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge will open in 2019 and will feature exclusive handcrafted toys by local artisans. Toydarian, a character who first appeared in The Phantom Menace, will sell these small, stuffed characters inside Galaxy’s Edge.
- Guardians of the Galaxy will open in Epcot’s Future World in 2021, just in time for the resort to celebrate its 50th anniversary.
- In the nearer future, the new UP-themed Flights of Wonder show called “Explorers Meet UP! A Great Bird Adventure” will open in Disney’s Animal Kingdom on April 22nd, 2018.
- There are also several Disney*Pixar-themed attractions coming to Disneyland including Pixar Fest, a new fireworks show celebrating friendship, the Pixar Play parade, the Paint the Night Parade which spotlights Pixar stories, and a Pixar Shorts film festival. It’s possible that some of these shows will eventually come to Disney World after some testing and perfecting on the west coast.
Without further ado, let’s look at two main announcements concerning Disney World fans made at the D23: Japan Expo!
Star Wars Hotel
We’ve already been told that the Star Wars-themed hotel will be immersive, groundbreaking, and epic. There are times when I still doubt whether this will actually happen. However, Disney appears to be moving forward with the plans.
This hotel concept will allow guests to board a starship and depart on a multi-day adventure in a Star Wars-themed land, and it begins as soon as you arrive. You can dress up as a Star Wars character, and you’ll follow a storyline throughout your stay.
We’ve also been told that the hotel will seamlessly connect guests to the new land coming to Disney’s Hollywood Studios in 2019 called Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.
While Disney has not announced an opening date for this luxury hotel unlike anything that currently exists, they do continue to talk about it and provide updates, so it seems as though the project is moving forward.
Mickey & Minnie’s Runaway Railway
As Disney’s Hollywood Studios has transitioned, one of the attractions that had to close due to sponsorship issues was The Great Movie Ride. This opening day attraction had many fans, and lots of people were upset when the attraction closed. It was not only a nostalgic Disney attraction but it also paid homage to some amazing movies from Hollywood history.
Regardless, Mickey and Minnie will be taking over, and I’m pretty excited about it!
We now know that the attraction will open in 2019. It will be the first ever ride-through attraction with a Mickey and Minnie Mouse theme, and the whole ride will feature an original story and theme song. Guests will journey inside the wacky and unpredictable world of Disney Channel’s Emmy Award-winning Mickey Mouse cartoon shorts like this one. These 2D shorts will come to life in a multi-dimensional experience thanks to new technology.
I expect this to be a great, new classic Disney attraction that takes full advantage of Disney’s most valuable intellectual property- Mickey Mouse himself and his one and only girl.
New Mickey Mouse Attraction at Hollywood Studios: Fun?