Forget the pirates, here come the Skywalkers.
Since Disney’s purchase of Lucasfilm for a measly $4 billion back in October, we knew a theme park was on its way. Internet buzz of late says a Jedi mind-trick Kingdom could now become a very definite reality.
As a fanboy, I think a freestanding Star Wars amusement park is way overdue. For decades we have traveled to our small corner of the Hollywood Studios Disney Park where the Wars are represented. We huddle, lonely and lost, in the Cantina-designed exit of the Star Tours ride.
Star Tours, the first ride related to the films, has just been updated. The ride was so outdated that Pee Wee Herman voiced the main character, when he was still relevant.
The smart business minions at Disney should and probably do recognize the huge potential here. The possibilities are endless and the design of the park needs to be topnotch. Here are some suggestions that should be taken into consideration:
Speeder Chase on Endor
We could have a lot of fun with this ride. The Disney rides make excellent use of digital screening and music comingled with the rollercoaster itself (see Rockin’ Rollercoaster). They should set up a ride where visitors mount a speeder-like machine and shoot through a heavily wooded area. Sounds simple but is, in fact, not.
This will require the magicians to build and plant trees in a part of the park. The ride will pass a village of Ewoks, Leia’s crash site, and a squad of storm troopers guarding the shield generator for the Death Star.
Naturally, there can be two separate tracks, one for adults and another for children, all complete with quick turns and twists. The difference would be the speed. Also, this wooded Endor area would have a walking trail rife with notable characters and Kodak moments.
Pod Race For Your Life
This is perhaps the most expected ride, as they have already updated the current Star Wars ride to include pod racers.
Though you may feel this is too similar to the Endor ride, I promise it isn’t. This would be an all-digital experience where 15 to 20 individuals board a Mission Space-esc ride. They load 5 deep into what is basically a G-Force machine and the screen opens in front of them. You are now, in theory, racing the other five people in your module. Each person has controls that steer and boost or “force jump.” It is essentially a large scale Mario Cart.
This can be one of the most awesome rides ever made by man. The real experience is seeing all the characters along the way. Jabba will start the race and Sand People will shoot at you as you pass by. You will be sabotaged by Sebulba and listen to Fode and Beed call the race. FUN!!!
Not just any X-Wing battle, this will be the raid and destruction of the Death Star. I suggest a ride similar to the Rockin’ Rollercoaster.
Start by loading into an X-Wing cockpit and charging into a black and grey space chasm. In the flick it was a straight run. We will have to add twists and turns to the ride, which is an understandable break we must make from the movie.
On our ride we will have to shoot out of the trench, blast a Tie-Fighter and then fly back in. After you return to the chasm, Han destroys the Tie on your tail and delivers his best line, “Let’s blow this thing and go home.” Awesome, I know.
This ride from beginning to end, with the exception of when lines are delivered, will play the appropriate John Williams music.
I will admit to not knowing exactly what we can do as far as a ride, but he needs to be present. Perhaps it can be something jetpack related. Another idea could be following him as an apprentice of sorts as he tries to nail one of his bounties. This is a character for the adults, definitely. He’s damn cool and totally badass. Put him in the park somewhere because he will be a major attraction.
The Park itself can be divided into two divisions, Empire and Rebellion. OH, even better, they could have different planets. This is too exciting for me. I feel like I’m in Vegas with someone else’s credit card.
To keep this short, the one attraction the park must have is The Cantina. Disney can fill it with mechanical aliens like the Hall of Presidents as well as costume players. What would totally blow my mind would be a full-service Cantina. If I can sit next to Han and Chewie while I eat my $40 “space” burger I’m a happy guy. Also, no one will try and sell Death Sticks, or maybe they would be like pixie sticks. You know, for the kids.
Ladies and gentlemen, I am so excited for the prospect of attending the Star Wars Park. I may even attend in full costume, as I’m sure over half of the attendees would. God speed Disney. We wish you well and by all means, out shine Universal’s Potter World. Butter Beer can’t compete with whatever that blue stuff was that Aunt Beru was serving.