An Open Letter to Disney - Visiting Galaxy's Edge

azheat01

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Dear Disney,

Just spent the last few days in Disneyland and was able to visit Galaxy's Edge. It’s a strange feeling, one that’s almost impossible to describe in words, in seeing your childhood memories come to life right before your eyes. When I was a kid growing up there wasn’t a Christmas or birthday from about 1977 to 1985 that didn’t somehow involve Star Wars.

Growing up in Reno in the early 80s, playing Star Wars with my brothers and friends, whether it was riding our bicycles down 7th street pretending they were Speeder Bikes, playing in the trees at the park as if we were on a distant planet, thinking the broken down car at the end of the street was our Millennium Falcon, playing in the box the new refrigerator came in like it was the Death Star trash compactor, or imagining the empty wrapping paper tubes were light sabers; it was always great.................

I get it, Disneyland and Star Wars aren’t for everyone, but both of these have me so chalk full of memories that I couldn’t forget them even if I tried. As I was looking out through the window at that life sized Millennium Falcon I swear to you, for a moment, I saw my 10 year old self smiling back. Sitting in the cargo hold of that ship, flying it on a mission, building a light saber, watching my kids build their droids, standing in front of an X-Wing fighter, walking through an environment that once only existed on screen or in my imagination........being totally immersed in a Star Wars world, was incredible.

This experience wasn’t just about loving Star Wars, it was about having a chance to see, hear, smell, and touch a childhood memory that’s been long gone, but never forgotten. A chance to once again believe in the unbelievable and see the impossible come to life. And to top it all off, I got to share that experience with my wife and kids......doesn’t get any better than that.

So thanks Disney, thanks for completely redefining what it means to say, “I feel like a kid again”. The last few days were magical, can’t wait to do it again.

See you in six months.......
 

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Psab keel

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Love it! This is by far what I think of as the best thing Disney has done with Star Wars since they bought it in 2012. I hope I get to have the same experience you had one day. Great letter and I'm glad you had a great time!
 

JoeG

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Thats an unused concept tie fighter from Ep IX when Colin Trevorrow was still attached to direct.
 

dkaniel

Sr Member
Damm you Disney, I swore I would never visit your parks again...oh how seductive the Dark Side is! Looks like I might have think about visiting now
 

yaris

Sr Member
Thx for the photos, the place looks awesome...I have a question...is the Falcon full size, as in a complete ship or just part of it poking out of the building?
 

azheat01

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Thanks for the wonderful writeup- I trust a fans opinion over PR everytime. I plan on visiting the Florida version of this but it will be a few years down the road. Can't place the design- is it a custom entrance to an attraction?
There will definitely be critics (there always are), both Star Wars and non-Star Wars fans alike. Even though they touted this as the largest expansion ever, I think it will be criticized for the lack of activity that doesn't involve spending money. With only one ride open now and one opening in fall, I think non-devoted fans will move through the area quickly. I am sooooo glad I went when they were still doing reservations.

We had a 4 hour block, and once most people road the Falcon, they walked around for about an hour or two and left. When we got in we went straight to Smuggler's Run, waited about 15 minutes in line to get on the ride, rode, and then walked around. We waited about 20 minutes to build our droid, then grabbed some food. The eating areas felt a little small, but totally immersive and just fun to be in. After that, we did Smuggler's Run three more times and twice we walked right on! (Pics below of the queuing area when we walked on). As a huge fan, I loved it. Just being in the environment itself was the treat. The cantina and market were cool. As I mentioned above, it was a truly amazing experience for me.

If anyone is going between now and the 24th when it opens for all, I suggest getting in line first for the saber build, droid build, or cantina; they fill up fast. The droid building area was a little smaller than I expected, but still way cool. Even the bathrooms are cool!

That concept Tie is not a ride entrance, more of a photo-op and an area for cast in character.

Thx for the photos, the place looks awesome...I have a question...is the Falcon full size, as in a complete ship or just part of it poking out of the building?
It's a full size, free standing Falcon! And you get to see all angles, and the back and top when you're in line for Smuggler's Run. Piloting the Falcon was something to experience, even though it felt more like a video game than a ride, it was way more interactive than I imagined! It had tons of buttons and switches to mess with, lights, and when you walk on, it literally feels like your boarding the Falcon like your boarding a plane, it was totally incredible! Hearing the sound effects, walking down the corridor, and then seeing that white interior, then walking onto the Falcon, just awesome. And when it's your turn to enter the cockpit, the door slides open......I'm smiling right now as I write this. And you have to work together for the mission, the left pilot controls side to side, the right pilot controls up and down, two gunners and two engineers. And pulling the lever to go into light speed, priceless!

Sorry, some the photos suck, I was overwhelmed!
 

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ALLEY

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
So, let me get this straight...

You had a legitimately thrilling “Star Wars Experience” brought to you by the House of the Mouse that not only met, but EXCEEDED your expectations?

I thought that, in this day and age, you could not claim to have had such a genuine experience without some contrarian lobbing the the label of “schill” in your direction? So far, I don’t see that this has happened, which is a credit to the Forum.

Looks like I’ll need to check this out.
 
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Psab keel

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
From just the pictures and videos alone I'm blown away by their dedication to a totally immersive experience.

I may be cynical but I'm not completely dead inside. ;);)
 

Richard Baker

Sr Member
The thing which strikes me is that Disney could have done only half as much and people would have still been happy.
This is done right, not just good enough to make money.
 

azheat01

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
From just the pictures and videos alone I'm blown away by their dedication to a totally immersive experience.
The cool thing is they completely tried to design this in a way where you won't see any of the other parts of Disneyland, which really sells the immersive experience you're in another world. Every so often you'll here what sounds like a ship coming in to land, and with the 3D sound effects and the bass, it was awesome. We actually kept looking up every time we heard it. Tons of easter eggs scattered about............you could spend all day in there just absorbing the details; at least I could........

I even liked the food; we tried about 8 different things. The Ronto Wrap and Smoked Kaddu Ribs were delicious and a welcome staple from the standard park fare.

I'm sitting here looking at all my pictures, and the videos of boarding and flying the Falcon, just can't stop smiling. Can't wait to go back........

I guess I should put a spoiler warning up top, I don't want to ruin the experience for anyone by posting so many pics, but I know many members here enjoy seeing them.





 

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From just the pictures and videos alone I'm blown away by their dedication to a totally immersive experience.

I may be cynical but I'm not completely dead inside. ;);)
Can I just say this is precisely how I felt when I discovered John Williams wrote a dedicated piece just for this park, and I actually kinda dig it?


I was, uh, not expecting to be grabbed by the lapels by this considering that I've had a mostly lukewarm reception to the sequel soundtracks (other than "Rey's Theme" and "March of the Resistance" I felt everything else was rather unmemorable, and I didn't even feel inspired to purchase the TLJ soundtrack to keep my collection intact). Maybe it's just me and my dubious taste, but this sounds to me like a really nice blend of Williams' OT and PT styles? I don't know, it's just captured that perfect sense of wonder and rousing, bombastic adventure that says this is Star Wars. Darn you Disney, I had to buy it and it's been on repeat a lot on my iPod.

Johnny's still got it, man.
 
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