New details on Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance ride experience and backstory

Dec 04, 2019 in "Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance"

Posted: Wednesday December 4, 2019 6:12am ET by WDWMAGIC Staff

One of the most anticipated attractions in theme park history opens tomorrow at Disney's Hollywood Studios, Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance, the headline experience in the recently opened Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge.

Disney has released a great overview of the experience and some of the unique elements that make this ride so special.

The Backstory

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away …

It is a dark time for the RESISTANCE. Following the devastating Battle of Crait, the freedom fighters have fled with General Leia Organa to an undisclosed location.

Meanwhile, hunted by the FIRST ORDER and Supreme Leader Kylo Ren, a band of Resistance supporters has established a temporary outpost on the remote planet of Batuu, thanks to scouting by Resistance spy Vi Moradi.

Here on the Outer Rim, the Resistance is rebuilding and searching for recruits to join the cause and help save the galaxy from tyranny …

Opening Dec. 5, 2019, at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Florida and Jan. 17, 2020, at Disneyland Park in California, Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance sets a new standard for what a Disney theme park experience can be, as guests become heroes of the Resistance in a climactic battle with the First Order. In one of the most immersive, ambitious and technologically advanced attractions ever created for a Disney park, guests launch into space aboard a transport shuttle, only to be captured by a Star Destroyer and pursued by Supreme Leader Kylo Ren as they frantically search for a way to escape the clutches of the First Order.

This new attraction inside Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge draws guests into a sprawling Star Wars narrative that blurs the lines between fantasy and reality, as jaw-dropping sights brimming with vivid detail create surprises around every turn. In one of the longest Disney attraction experiences ever, Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance delivers thrilling action driven by cutting-edge technology and innovative design that gives guests the feeling of stepping inside a Star Wars film.

Join the Resistance

Guests exploring Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge find the Resistance’s temporary encampment in the forested area along the outskirts of Black Spire Outpost on Batuu.

The gateway to the encampment is marked by a large turret. From there, a pathway leads deeper into the forest toward towering cliffs and the crumbling remains of an ancient civilization. Guests weave through low stone walls, timeworn pillars and tight corridors as they progress farther into the base, hearing military communications chatter along the way.

In a makeshift briefing room, Rey – a hero of the cause – appears via holo-transmission alongside dutiful droid BB-8 to welcome the new Resistance recruits. She shares a plan to reunite with General Leia Organa at an off-planet location that must be kept secret from the First Order.
Guests then board a nearby Intersystem Transport Ship (I-TS) and have to make their rendezvous quickly to avoid a First Order Star Destroyer on its way to Batuu. They should have a bad feeling about this …

An All-Encompassing Attraction Experience

Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance throws out the rulebook for traditional attraction design, eschewing and/or blending industry notions such as “queue,” “preshow” and “ride” to create a seamless, holistic experience full of rich details and breathtaking excitement on a cinematic scale.

When guests board the I-TS, they’ll feel as if they’re lifting off the surface of Batuu and blasting into space alongside Poe Dameron in his signature black-painted X-wing starfighter, Black One.

Before the I-TS can make the jump to lightspeed, it’s caught in the tractor beam of a Star Destroyer and pulled into a massive hangar bay.

Guests make their escape from the Star Destroyer aboard eight-passenger First Order Fleet Transports piloted by reprogrammed R5-series astromech droids.

The attraction features grand set pieces – including the hangar bay that is filled with 50 menacing stormtroopers and a docked TIE fighter. At various points, guests dodge blaster bolts from stormtroopers and AT-AT walkers, scurry past huge turbolaser cannons, and stumble into the Star Destroyer’s bridge.

Throughout their journey, guests are hunted by Kylo Ren, who uses the Force in an attempt to pry from their minds the location of General Organa’s secret base. Guests feel Ren’s tremendous malevolent power as they narrowly avoid his attacks.

Authentically Star Wars

Actors from the current Star Wars film trilogy reprise their roles for new scenes and dialogue in Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance, including Daisy Ridley (Rey), Adam Driver (Kylo Ren), John Boyega (Finn), Oscar Isaac (Poe Dameron) and Domhnall Gleeson (General Hux). Many scenes were filmed at the same time “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” and “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” were in production.

Poe Dameron’s X-wing is one of several vehicles from the Star Wars galaxy appearing in the attraction.

Disney cast members adopt personalities of First Order and Resistance troops throughout the attraction to further deepen the immersive experience for guests.

Walt Disney Imagineering worked hand in hand with Lucasfilm in writing the attraction’s script, ensuring characters and storylines were properly integrated into the broader Star Wars

The attraction introduces a new featured character: Lieutenant Bek is a Mon Calamari Resistance officer who helps guide the Resistance recruits through their harrowing journey.

Cutting-Edge Technology Powers Immersive Storytelling

Walt Disney Imagineering combined multiple ride systems to tell the story of Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance. In one sequence, a new simulator experience gives the sensation of falling from space to crash land on Batuu.

The trackless ride vehicles in Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance are some of the most advanced ever used in a Disney attraction, with a sleek, low profile and the ability to move in all directions.

Disney A-1000 Audio-Animatronicsfigures appearing in the attraction provide a deep level of immersive storytelling through their lifelike and dynamic movements.

To fully realize this Star Wars story, Imagineers created thousands of special effects, from slashing lightsabers and whizzing blaster bolts to exploding walls and massive star fields – just to name a few.

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duncedoof16 days ago

By turning off the gimmick entirely, they don't have to worry about it anymore. At least that's my line of thinking

peter1143516 days ago

If that were the determining factor the ride would be closed. You could say the exact same thing about the sensors for any of the dozen show action doors or the four vertical conveyors.

duncedoof16 days ago

It's safe to say that's obvious. If those sensors fail, you get a whole vehicle full of lawsuits, if not worse. I wonder when, and how, they realized something was up and chose to turn off the effect. I hope they can fix it.

gerarar18 days ago

Great thread from a CM on the most common ROTR breakdowns. Was mostly surprised/interested by this piece of info as it was mostly known that the rides were constructed the same except for their queue space, but maybe that had an impact. Disney World has a way to bypass extended downtimes due to the ITS and can keep running sans ITS, but Disneyland does not (yet). But I do think a lot of breakdowns happen due to guests dropping items (hats, glasses, etc.) during the ride portion. There was a livestream some time ago where someone's hat flew off in the final Kylo scene with the wind blowing, and that triggered an E-stop. It's probably why it's very common that the CMs tell you to take off any "head-gear" before the interrogation starts.

Henry Mystic26 days ago

It’s a sensor issue. It’s likely it could be addressed in a refurbishment, but who knows.

Henry Mystic26 days ago

I really hope Rise gets a refurbishment. It’s been in rough shape for a while now. We’ll probably have to wait for a new ride to take up its ILL spot, but one can hope.

trainplane3Mar 03, 2024

Not the issue.

TrainsOfDisneyMar 01, 2024

I like that idea, maybe one could hide and the other pass and then hide and pass? Could be fun. The programming could be kind of hide and seek - would be a clever use of that space.

DisneyCaneMar 01, 2024

I don't know if it is possible but instead of having the transporter randomly back up for (now) no apparent reason, it should pull in next to a cannon to avoid being seen and then back out and continue. The way it is now makes absolutely no sense at all in the context of the ride story. They also need a complete wall to block the finale Kylo when in B mode. It's not that hard to see the AA there.

Magicart87Feb 29, 2024

Seems like an interim fix or b mode would be to have the guns retract or recoil backwards with the base still remaining fixed in place. It'd be a complete rebuild but still seems like they could still find a way to animate it while remaining stationary.

DisneyCaneFeb 29, 2024

I thought the same. They just had the doors open on the right side room and had a CM hold everyone and then release them to the transporter.

TrainsOfDisneyFeb 29, 2024

They wouldn’t collide but when the sequence got a little off timing the ride would stop. I think the issue now has a solution so maybe after they go down for rehab one day we may see them work again. Time will tell.

MisterPenguinFeb 29, 2024

That's odd since they have two Rey rooms.

DragonmanFeb 29, 2024

I have a theory that the cannons are stationary to avoid collisions with the ride vehicles but idk how true that is. It could just boil down to lazy maintenance or a yeti situation.