10 Details at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge That Star Wars Fans Will Appreciate
With the grand opening of Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance on December 5, Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Orlando, Florida is now fully operational. More than just a theme park, Disney has carefully crafted an experience that die-hard fans will appreciate and casual enthusiasts will also enjoy.
1. Once you’ve entered Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, the rest of Hollywood Studios no longer exists. You are a visitor on Batuu, a planet on the galaxy’s edge, where locals greet you by saying “Bright suns!” in the morning and “Rising moons!” in the evening. There are no souvenirs with Mickey Mouse wearing stormtrooper armour here; even the beverage containers are shaped like thermal detonators, with labels written in Aurebesh, the galactic alphabet most often used to transcribe the Star Wars languages. Spot the tracks on the ground belonging to various droids and creatures.
2. Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance is far more than just a ride. Like Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run, it is an immersive experience that makes you feel as though you are participating in a new Star Wars movie. For Rise of the Resistance, the scenes throughout the experience featuring the cast of the new films were shot on location during production, so the locations and costumes are authentic.
3. While Disney takes a few liberties incorporating timelines and universes throughout the park, it’s clear the original Star Wars trilogy reigns supreme. The new character created just for Rise of the Resistance, Lieutenant Bek, is a Mon Calamari pilot tasked with transporting you, a new rebel recruit, to General Organa’s secret base. He utters Han Solo’s famous line, “I have a bad feeling about this.” You’ll hear those words sprinkled throughout the ride and the park itself.
4. A number is never just a number in a Disney park; codes almost always mean something. When translated from Aurebesh, the writing on the garbage cans in Galaxy’s Edge says “trash to sector 3263827.” Sector 3263827 is the number for the Death Star trash compactor from Star Wars: A New Hope.
5. Speaking of that trash compactor, a dianoga (the creature that attacked Luke) is living in the plumbing connected to the water fountain in the Black Spire Outpost marketplace. When you can’t spot him in the tank, you can hear him in the pipes that run throughout the building.
6. And speaking of creatures, pop in to visit Simpi the sarlacc in Dok-Ondar’s Den of Antiquities, the Galaxy’s Edge shop that sells all sorts of unique treasures. It’s hard to believe sarlacci can grow to the size of the one that ate Boba Fett in Return of the Jedi, but Simpi has a while yet before needing a habitat the size of the Great Pit of Carkoon. Fun fact: Simpi was given to Dok-Ondar by Han Solo and Chewbacca, and Chewie pops in from time to time to visit.
7. Dok-Ondar’s shop is a treasure trove of special items that both Star Wars super fans and those new to the stories will recognize and appreciate. The die hard in my household was delighted to see the taxidermied wampa, while I was pretty pleased with myself for spotting the helmet and weapon currently used by Pedro Pascal in The Mandalorian.
8. Even Batuuans need to eat and hydrate, so in addition to the soft drinks and water we enjoy on earth, don’t miss the opportunity to try some local fare. At the milk stand, Bubo Wamba Family Farms delivers frosty concoctions of Blue and Green Milk (a mix of rice and coconut milks) that are surprisingly refreshing, and “grown-up” versions are available. Jabba the Hutt’s swelter droid, 8D-JB, is put to use roasting meat using a repurposed pod racer engine outside Rondo’s Roasters. The breakfast wrap is delicious.
9. Weary travellers to Batuu might prefer to pull up a barrel or case in Docking Bay 7 and relax with a sit-down meal. The opportunity to sit and rest will allow Easter Egg spotters to decipher the various codes on the shipping containers. The most obvious ones are 77, 80, and 83, the years the films from the original Star Wars trilogy were released.
10. While Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge is a truly Batuuan experience, there is a nod to the previous inhabitant of the 14-acres connected to Disney’s Hollywood Studios. In the Black Spire Outpost marketplace, there’s a display of three speeder bikes on the wall. The green one in the middle bears a code in Aurebesh that translates to LMA, which is short for “Lights, Motors, Action!” the spectacular stunt car show that was closed in 2016 when construction on Galaxy’s Edge began.
Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge in Orlando, Florida is now fully open, and its (almost) identical twin at Disneyland in California will be as well once their iteration of Rise of the Resistance premieres in January 2020. Admission is included in your Hollywood Studios park pass, but FastPass+ options may not be available for all attractions. From now until February 7, 2020, Canadian residents can save 20% on a 4-Day or longer Walt Disney World Theme Park ticket. There are no blackout dates, and tickets are valid for use before December 31, 2020.
Corinne McDermott is the editor of Movie Entertainment magazine.