Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge is open but Disney isn't finished updating Hollywood Studios


Concept art for Mickey and Minnie's Runaway Railway - IMAGE VIA DISNEY
  • Image via Disney
  • Concept art for Mickey and Minnie's Runaway Railway

  • image via Disney Parks Blog
Disney’s Hollywood Studios saw its highly anticipated Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge open just over a month ago. The new land rounded out the final significant piece of a multi-year expansion of the television and film-based theme park. Just because the last of the park’s confirmed new lands is now open, however, doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of new things still in the works for the park.

The Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance ride is scheduled to open in Galaxy’s Edge in early December. The ride is widely believed to be the most technologically advanced ride ever built, with numerous patented technologies being used for the very first time. The experience will include multiple pre-shows, life-size sets, and some of the largest digital screens ever used on a theme park attraction.
  • Image via Disney
Over in the Chinese Theater, Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway is readying for its Spring 2020 opening. This new dark attraction will feature practical sets and effects to transport guests into a Mickey cartoon short, enhanced by next-generation projection mapping. The queue of the ride will retain much of the former Great Movie Ride queue, with the displays now focused on the history of the most famous cartoon mouse in the world. Updates to the outside of the Chinese Theater will see a marque for the attraction inspired by the large neon signs that were used to announce movie premieres during the Golden Age of Hollywood.
Concept art for Mickey and Minnie's Runaway Railway - IMAGE VIA DISNEY
  • Image via Disney
  • Concept art for Mickey and Minnie's Runaway Railway
Both Rise of the Resistance and Runaway Railway will use the very latest generation of trackless ride systems, a noticeable improvement in the technology compared to that being used in Epcot’s upcoming Ratatouille ride or SeaWorld’s Antarctica: Empire Of The Penguin attraction.

Near Runaway Railway, the Mickey Mouse focus will continue with a reimagined venue being transformed into the Mickey Shorts Theater. While Disney hasn’t shared what this new theater will be screening, the name seems to indicate that the Mickey Mouse shorts, like those which inspired Runaway Railway, be screened in the theater. Disney also hasn’t revealed the exact location of the reimagined venue but noted it was within the park’s “theater district,” which is viewed as the area directly around the Chinese Theater. The most likely location in the former Sounds Dangerous/ABC Sounds Studio Theater, most recently used for the Path of the Jedi kids experience.
Roundup Rodeo BBQ restaurant coming to Toy Story Land - PHOTO VIA DISNEY WORLD
  • Photo via Disney World
  • Roundup Rodeo BBQ restaurant coming to Toy Story Land
Despite being just over a year old, Toy Story Land is already receiving an expansion, with a new table-service restaurant, Roundup Rodeo BBQ. No opening date has been announced, but site development near the Woody entrance of the land has already begun, so it’s likely that it will open sometime in mid to late 2020. Larger than life “cardboard” cut-outs and props will fill the toy-rodeo-themed restaurant.

Beyond the already confirmed projects coming to Hollywood Studios, it is believed that at least one or two more themed lands, with one possibly themed to Indiana Jones and another themed to one or more Pixar properties, may still be in the works. These future plans are far less set-in-stone, thanks to the shifting leadership and changing priorities within the parks division. The dated Indiana Jones stunt show, Star Tours simulators, and the attractions in the Animation Courtyard area are all expected to close within the coming years as the park continues to be updated. Disney has so far not indicated if or when any these changes will take place.

All of the confirmed additions should open within the next eight to twelve months.

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