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Disneyland Article
R2 D2 Roams Freely Around Star Wars Galaxys Edge In Play Tests

Droid Depot
ID:
TMS-4566
Source:
Mercury News
Author:
Brady Macdonald
Dateline:
December 24, 2019
Posted:
December 28, 2019
Status:
Current
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A familiar blue and white astromech unit roamed freely around Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge speaking droid and marvelling at the Millennium Falcon as surprised Disneyland visitors snapped photographs.

The “play tests” with R2-D2 in Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge are part of an ongoing innovation process looking at new ways for guests to experience Disney parks, according to Disneyland officials. The experiences being tested may or may not end up as theme park offerings, officials said.

R2-D2 has been seen rolling around Galaxy’s Edge near the entrance to the Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run attraction on several occasions in recent days, according to MiceChat.

“This makes us wonder if the small army of semi-autonomous droids promised for the land, but never delivered, may finally make their way to Galaxy’s Edge,” MiceChat wrote in a recent Disneyland update. “We sure hope so.”

Early concept art of Galaxy’s Edge showed Star Wars droids and creatures freely wandering the new 14-acre themed lands at Disneyland and Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Walt Disney Imagineering officials have said that the long-term plan is to have droids interact with visitors in the Star Wars themed lands in California and Florida.

So far, Galaxy’s Edge visitors have been able to interact with audio-animatronic droids anchored in place in front of Droid Depot and a $25,000 remote-controlled R2-D2 for sale inside the build-your-droid workshop.

The recent play test marks R2-D2’s first journey outside Droid Depot since Galaxy’s Edge debuted in May. Disneyland cast members walked alongside Artoo as the droid made his way around Galaxy’s Edge during the play tests.

R2-D2 isn’t the first droid to roll around the Anaheim theme park. An orange and white maintenance droid named Jake wowed stunned Disneyland visitors in 2017 as he roamed freely around Tomorrowland posing for photos with curious onlookers and pausing for hugs from adoring kids.

The J4-K3 Tomorrowland play test at Disneyland was independent of any work being done on Galaxy’s Edge, according to Walt Disney Imagineering officials. Imagineering has no current plans to use the J4-K3 autonomous character technology in Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge or with any particular character or type of character.
 
Attractions Referenced

Millennium Falcon Smugglers Run

 
Shops Referenced

Droid Depot

 
Lands Referenced

Star Wars Galaxys Edge

Tomorrowland

 
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