We reported earlier that Disney World has officially announced the closure of Lights, Motors, Action: Epic Stunt Spectacular (read the full article here) on April 2, 2016. Additional details are emerging on further closures in the park to make way for the much anticipate, but still far off, Star Wars and Toy Story Lands. Up to this point we’ve seen minor closures around the park and the disappointing but expected announcement that 2015 was the final year for the Osborne Festival of Dancing Lights. It appears that construction will kick into high gear starting in April and will bring with it massive changes to the rapidly shrinking park.
While the Lights, Motors, Action show is certainly the largest attraction to see the wrecking ball, it’s only the tip of the iceberg. Joining LMA in moving from the endangered list to extinct are the following:
- Honey, I Shrunk the Kids Movie Set Adventure
- Monsters Inc. Meet & Greet
- Studio Catering Company counter service dining
- Youze Guys Moychondise
- Streets of America
- The Prop Shop retail location
- Watto’s Grotto retail location
- Earful Tower (the iconic water tower with Mickey Ears along World Drive)
While we knew the expansion plans for Hollywood Studios were massive and the disruption would be significant, the recent flurry of news certainly brings the reality home in a big way. Many had speculated that construction would be confined to back stage areas and it would be sometime before we saw any real impact on the park and its attractions. That speculation was obviously incorrect.
However, Disney has been widely criticized for moving at a glacial pace when it comes to know projects. For example, in roughly the same amount of time it took Disney to erect the first Disney Springs parking garage, Universal built Diagon Alley. Hopefully, the rash of closures so quickly indicates an aggressive construction schedule.
Star Wars Land Coming to Hollywood Studios
by Chad N
Largest Land Expansion Ever Brings Star Wars to Life
It’s safe to say that not since the fall of the Empire and the burning of Darth Vader’s lifeless body has there been such a celebration. Star Wars fans across the universe have be hoping for this announcement while speculation has run rampant recently with numerous attraction closures.
Today (August 15, 2015) at the D23 EXPO 2015, The Walt Disney Company Chairman and CEO Bob Iger announced to an audience of more than 7,500 fans that Star Wars-themed lands will be coming to Disneyland park in Anaheim, Calif., and Disney’s Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Fla., allowing Star Wars fans to step into the stories from a galaxy far, far away.
Ambitious plans to bring Star Wars to life in the two parks include creating Disney’s largest single-themed land expansions ever at 14-acres each, transporting guests to a never-before-seen planet, a remote trading port and one of the last stops before wild space where Star Wars characters and their stories come to life.
“I am thrilled to announce the next chapter in the long and exciting history between Disney Parks and Star Wars,” said Iger. “We are creating a jaw-dropping new world that represents our largest single themed land expansion ever. These new lands at Disneyland and Walt Disney World will transport guests to a whole new Star Wars planet, including an epic Star Wars adventure that puts you in the middle of a climactic battle between the First Order and the Resistance.”
These authentic lands will have two signature attractions, including the ability to take the controls of one of the most recognizable ships in the galaxy, the Millennium Falcon, on a customized secret mission, and an epic Star Wars adventure that puts guests in the middle of a climactic battle.
Further announcements for the Hollywood Studios reboot are expected later today and the parks and resorts presentation.
What do you think? Is this the most exciting Disney World news since the opening of Animal Kingdom? We think it might be.