While we are just 24 days away from the next installment of the Star Wars saga, it’s time to whet your Wookiee-sized appetite with Star Tours news! There have been some pretty massive updates to our current favorite attraction that takes place in a Galaxy Far, Far Away. Star Tours just reopened with a bunch of new updates, including a scene from the upcoming The Last Jedi, new details about the planet from Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, and new continuity rules for the attraction.
Want to find out more? Artoo, lightspeed to Endor!
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Star Tours Timelines: Star Wars Classic or New Star Wars
In addition to adding a few new scenes for the upcoming release of The Last Jedi, Star Tours has reorganized its timelines for a better sense of continuity. First up, Star Tours will no longer mixup timelines and will divide itself into two different experiences at a future date. One experience will feature scenes / characters from Episodes 1-6 (Phantom Menace through Return of the Jedi), while the other will only feature scenes from Episode 7, 8 and onward. This means that the timelines are a little bit neater, as you’ll no longer see Darth Vader in the first scene and then see Finn (a character born after Vader had died) in the second scene on Jakku. While mixing locations from Episodes 1-6 still has a little bit of timeline fuzziness, this is definitely much better for Star Wars purists, and shows that Disney is taking the Star Wars storytelling inside the parks a bit more seriously ahead of the opening of Galaxy’s Edge. At some point in the future, you’ll be able to choose if you will experience the Episodes 1-6 version or the Episodes 7-8 version.
Last Jedi Scene and New Star Wars Trilogy Bits
Speaking of, what does the newer version of Star Tours look like? The opening scenes with Darth Vader or Imperial Stormtroopers has been replaced with a scene featuring an encounter with Kylo Ren or First Order Stormtroopers. Then you fly to Jakku from The Force Awakens. Then C-3PO will get a transmission from BB-8, Maz Kanata, or Poe Dameron. Then your Starspeeder will make its way to Crait, a new planet from The Last Jedi. Finally, your crew will make one last jump to hyperspace, taking you to the planet from Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. That’s right, the final scene in the new Star Tours experience ties into the new Star Wars land that Disney is building at Disneyland and Disney’s Hollywood Studios (More on that in a bit).
While it’s always great to see new Star Wars stuff at Disney World, I’m particularly excited because this might show that Star Tours is safe as an attraction. Since Disney has announced Star Wars Land in 2015, there has been a lot of speculation about the future of Star Tours, whether it would be moved or closed once Galaxy’s Edge reopened. These new scenes show an investment in this attraction that wouldn’t make sense if they were planning on closing it in 2019. I could be wrong about it, but I’m just keeping my fingers crossed that Star Tours can stick around for the foreseeable future.
Welcome to Batuu
Speaking of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, we now have a name for the planet where we’ll be traveling to once the new land opens in 2019. At the end of their journey, C-3PO lets Star Tours riders know that they’ve arrived at Batuu. From StarWars.com:
“This remote outpost on the galaxy’s edge was once a busy crossroads along the old sub-lightspeed trade routes, but its prominence was bypassed by the rise of hyperspace travel. Now home to those who prefer to stay out of the mainstream, it has become a thriving port for smugglers, rogue traders and adventurers traveling between the frontier and uncharted space. It’s also a convenient safe haven for those intent on avoiding the expanding reach of the First Order. While Batuu may be new to us, it is clearly already familiar to many characters from the Star Wars saga as a stepping off point for epic adventures.”
Is it 2019 yet? Is it December 15 yet? Okay, fine, I’ll just rewatch Rogue One for the fifteenth time.