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Spaceship Earth Becomes the Death Star – Plus More Star Wars Coming to Hollywood Studios

by Banks Lee

star wars rogue one epcot spaceship earth death star

With “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” opening in theaters on Dec. 16, a special event was held at Epcot to announce new and updated Star Wars experiences coming soon, as well as transform a Disney icon into the Death Star.

To celebrate the upcoming release of “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story,” the iconic Spaceship Earth at Walt Disney World transformed into the Death Star from Star Wars. Actor Mads Mikkelsen, who plays Galen Erso in “Rogue One,” also made a special appearance.

Spaceship Earth becomes the Death Star at Star Wars event at Epcot

Guests, including fans of the space saga, will find new entertainment, special displays inside Star Wars Launch Bay, a first-ever themed tour and more at Disney’s Hollywood Studios soon.

Premiering this Month

Star Wars Launch Bay is now updated with authentic replicas from “Rogue One” joining other Star Wars memorabilia in the preview gallery. Making-of footage from “Rogue One” has been added to the “Meet the Makers” film featured in Star Wars Launch Bay. Read more about it here.

Stormtroopers from "Rogue One: A Star Wars Story" Coming to Disney's Hollywood Studios

In the daytime stage show “Star Wars: A Galaxy Far, Far Away,” guests will get a first look at AWR Troopers from “Rogue One,” AKA Imperial Death Troopers. Outfitted in their specialized Stormtrooper armor with a dark, ominous gleam, these soldiers serve as bodyguards and enforcers for Director Krennic, a highly placed officer within the Advance Weapons Research (AWR) division of the Empire. A new Troopers sequence will join the show Dec. 16.

The nighttime show, “Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular,” will return to Disney’s Hollywood Studios on Dec. 16 and will join “Jingle Bell, Jingle BAM!” as a second nightly fireworks spectacular at the park through Dec. 31. The show will continue to be presented in 2017.

Starting mid-December, randomized scenes will be returning to Star Tours: The Adventures Continue. Instead of each ride experience launching from the planet of Jakku, the attraction will be randomized to both start and end at different locations for every galactic journey. New scenes from “Star Wars: Episode VIII” will be added to Star Tours in the coming year.

New in 2017

For the ultimate fan comes the ultimate tour. An all-new Star Wars guided tour is a seven-hour immersion in all the park’s current Star Wars experiences. Here’s what it includes:

• A Star Wars “all-in-the-know” tour guide
• Priority boarding for Star Tours: The Adventures Continue
• Encounter two Star Wars characters (Chewbacca and Kylo Ren) at Star Wars Launch Bay
• An in-depth, insider’s tour around Star Wars Launch Bay
• Screening of “Star Wars: Path of the Jedi”
• Enjoy Star Wars-themed menu items during dinner at Backlot Express
• A spot in the Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular Dessert Party, which includes themed sweets and specialty beverages, as well as reserved viewing for the “Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular” fireworks show

Younglings ages 4-12 on the guided tour package can also train in the way of The Force in Jedi Training: Trials of the Temple.

Priced at $129 per person, tours begin Jan. 2 and will be offered on Mondays and Saturdays throughout 2017. Reservations for January tours can be made soon.

These latest additions celebrating the Star Wars saga continue to elevate the Star Wars presence at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Entire Star Wars-themed lands are now under construction at the theme park and at Disneyland in California.

Rogue One Props at Star Wars Launch Bay

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