Disneyland Resort Update: River Guardians of the Star Wars Galaxy with ASIMO Pirate FastPasses

Disneyland Resort, Anaheim, CA

Aaaaaaand we're back!  There was no Disney update last week, because I was off at Mammoth, skiing.  And then I decided to just take the week off, because these updates are time and effort consuming.  And... I guess that means a quiet week. 

But we've got a lot to cover at the Disneyland Resort--enough to split into two updates, actually--so lets get right to it!

"Star Wars" Land

Welp, the cat's out of the bag.  The big E-Ticket in "Star Wars" Land will be an epic ride that takes guests into an adventure against the First Order, while a second attraction will allow guests to pilot the Millennium Falcon.  This might have actually already been officially announced months ago (I had been too lazy to check), but I was holding off on identifying things specifically until I was sure it was all public knowledge. 

Work continues, and a good amount of progress has occurred over the past two weeks.  For one, those "railroad trestles" have actually been installed as AT-AT bodies--impressive set pieces that are just one part of what is shaping up to be an incredible looking ride in both theming and scale.  Lets have a look, shall we?

Mickey and Friends Parking Updates

The transportation building continues its work, while some helpful more prominent way-finding signage has been added to the security plaza of the Mickey and Friends parking structure.

Rivers of America

Work continues along the Rivers of America in preparation for its reopening in July.  Most of this is occurring backstage, though since our last extensive updates, I've noticed a few theming elements placed to hide new infrastructure for FANTASMIC! 2.0.  Rockwork and nature-crafting continues along the drained part of the river as well.

Guardians of the Galaxy - Mission: Breakout!

A week and a half ago, a significant portion of tarps came off at the ex-Tower of Terror, revealing part of the facade of the new Guardians of the Galaxy attraction.  To be honest, I don't think it looks as bad as I feared based on the rendering.  On the other hand, it doesn't exactly look great either; I was just expecting really, really, really poor aesthetics, and this is maybe one less adjective than I figured.  On an island, this might actually be okay.  In context, it's still obviously glaring and garish--and very much Tomorrowland 1998 Revival.  But it is what it is.  All the whining in the world won't change the direction they're headed. 

Here's a bunch of photos showing off the revamped show building!

FastPass Changes and MaxPass Additions

This is actually old news, but over the past few weeks/couple of months, Disney has quietly been installing MaxPass machines at its FastPass attractions in preparation of its new system roll-out.  If you missed it, the Disneyland Resort will be offering an electronic FastPass reservation system as an upcharge called the MaxPass that will utilize the Disneyland app and enable purchasing guests to reserve FastPasses without physically going to a station, and I believe also allow guests to meet Goofy's son.  The service also provides free downloads of PhotoPass pictures taken that day, all for $10 per person.  Consider it Southern California's version of the Magic Band.  Sort of.

Ride Statuses

Several rides and attractions have reopened, while others remain under refurbishment.  Of particular focus below is Pirates of the Caribbean, which celebrated its 50th anniversary the previous weekend with a fun little limited-time event.  The ride itself reopened in time for its big birthday, and it looks pretty great!  Also, under less fanfare, the Autopia received a modest refresher to its theming that's kind of cute.

That wraps up today's lengthy look at the Disneyland Resort.  But wait!  There's more!  I took a bunch of photos of this year's springtime blooms at the Disneyland Resort, plus shots of the updated Remember... Dreams Come True fireworks show with projections.  Look for that tomorrow as an eye candy-focused supplement to our Disney update.

If you like the Disney photos, I'll provide a cheap plug and encourage you to frequent my Disney park photo blog site, Disney Photoblography, which provides a post everyday featuring some Disney park somewhere around the world!

Groot Bah!!

Architect. Photographer. Disney nerd. Haunt enthusiast. Travel bugged. Concert fiend. Asian.