A Place To Live Your Own Adventures
When Imagineers began to conceptualize Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, they had some tricky fundamental questions to answer. How do you condense four decades of storytelling into one land? How do you create a place that appeals to all Star Wars fans when you have numerous films and TV shows, as well as myriad novels, comic books, video games and more from which to draw? How do you pick and choose from a beloved panoply of planets, characters, ships and droids that span generations, all while designing an environment that feels like a cohesive whole?
The short answer? You can’t.
Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge couldn’t be a “greatest hits” collection — that would make no sense narratively. There’s no way to go, say, from a Clone Wars battle to a hangar on the Death Star, to Supreme Leader Snoke’s throne room, all in one land. Instead, Imagineers made the bold decision to go someplace unfamiliar to most of us in this galaxy far, far away. Working in full collaboration with Lucasfilm, Imagineers built the planet of Batuu, which is home to an old trading port called Black Spire Outpost. This remote location on the galaxy’s Outer Rim, right on the edge of Wild Space, included all the things we love about Star Wars for reasons that fit perfectly into existing Star Wars lore.
A Galaxy for Everyone
Regardless of how one first fell in love with the Star Wars universe, Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge needed to feel welcoming and inclusive. So, is The Empire Strikes Back your favorite movie? Check out the taxidermic wampa inside Dok-Ondar’s Den of Antiquities. Did you ever want to dress like Anakin Skywalker? You can find robes modeled after his in Black Spire Outfitters. Was it your dream to create your own lightsaber like the Jedi younglings in Star Wars: The Clone Wars? Savi’s Workshop should be your first stop. Have you spent the past 40+ years wondering what blue milk tastes like? Yeah, Imagineers helped concoct that, too.
Live your Star Wars Adventure
While countless details are fun to discover on their own, they also collectively serve a higher narrative purpose — to invite active exploration in the land. Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge needed to welcome all types of explorers to the Outer Rim — from the space tourist pleased to enjoy the sights and sounds of a new planet to the aspiring smuggler ready to make her own fate among Batuu’s more adventurous inhabitants. This land is a place where a traveler’s actions build a reputation.
Living your own Star Wars adventure is a hallmark of the guest experience in Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. Rather than watching as events unfold, you can become part of a mission, intercept and decode transmissions and learn more about the citizens of Batuu. This idea is most apparent in the groundbreaking new attraction inspired by the most famous “bucket of bolts” in the galaxy.
Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run invites crew members to play one of three critical roles on the ship that made the Kessel Run in less than 12 parsecs. You can serve as pilot, gunner or flight engineer in an interactive flight simulator that responds to your every move. And your performance in those roles matters. Do a great job, and you will never forget the feeling of pulling the lever to make the jump to lightspeed. And if you smash into walls, well, you’ll feel that too … literally. But be careful: you might also find yourself in debt to Hondo Ohnaka for ship repairs.
The Falcon is one of two anchor attractions in the land. The other, Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance, demonstrates the awe-inspiring sense of scale that is ingrained in Star Wars stories. Star Wars stories are big. So is this attraction. From a Star Destroyer hangar bay to a pair of giant AT-ATs, Walt Disney Imagineering made sure Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance tells a big story in a big way, where guests find themselves in the middle of a galactic battle between the First Order and the Resistance. Fully immersive and packed with action and excitement, the attraction combines several distinct ride systems seamlessly connect to create one experience for an adventure worthy of the scale of the Star Wars galaxy.
A Land Alive
In reality, the entire land feels like one massive attraction. In partnership with Lucasfilm, Imagineers created a deep and rich history for planet, evident in the petrified trees that surround its blaster-scorched buildings. The village’s marketplace — inspired by real-life street scenes in far-flung locales like Marrakesh and Istanbul — is full of sights, sounds, smells and tastes that make the place feel both lived-in and alive. Listen carefully and you may hear a resident practicing a musical instrument from an upper window or the rush of a starship whizzing by overhead. Imagineers encouraged shopkeepers and other Disney cast members to create backstories for their own characters and to interact as if they’re permanent residents of Batuu, deepening the immersion. And because storytelling should be layered, using the Play Disney Parks mobile app while in the land unlocks new levels of intrigue and adventure that turn all of Black Spire Outpost into a giant playset.
The Story Continues …
For some, visiting Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge may be their very first experience with this galaxy far, far away. For others, this land may be the culmination of a childhood dream. Imagineers have ensured that all are welcome by designing the planet of Batuu as a living, breathing contributor to the grander Star Wars story. What guests do, choose and experience becomes a part of the history of Black Spire Outpost, and what happens here ripples out to affect other corners of the galaxy. Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge is a land designed to be vibrant, designed to evolve, and created with its very own history and vocabulary. In Walt Disney Imagineering’s spirit of immersive world-building, we say, “Bright suns!” And the Force will be with you … always.