Adding to the James Cameron film’s incredible box office success and incredible number of announced sequels, Avatar’s Walt Disney World attraction is adding even more reasons to go to Pandora. Pandora: The World of Avatar may have had all the beauty of that lush CGI creation — but now they have the actual mech suits from the movie that the actors will wear as they trudge around the park.
This augments the large, 12-acre park — equipped with a Na’vi River Journey and a 3-D VR coaster called the Flight of Passage — with mechs.
Don’t just take our word for it. Disney Parks Live Entertainment executive producer Laura Offerdahl said, “these are actually suits that have been developed by the scientists to go out in to the wilderness to explore the plant life and the animals.” That’s right. Real mechanical exoskeletons. Anime-like, science-fiction mech suits. If our excitement isn’t getting across, watch the announcement video:
The behind the scenes video shows a bit of the collaboration between Lightstorm Entertainment, Disney Parks Live Entertainment, Michael Curry Studios and Walt Disney Imagineering. It took a lot of teamwork to develop the 10-foot tall suits, controlled by the actors seated atop them. What was once simply a 3-D model became real thanks to a little imagineering. Even Disney Parks Live Entertainment show director Tony Giordano was blown away: “It was like Christmas when I saw the suit walk towards me, and heard the guy talking to me, telling me about Pandora. I didn’t think it was possible.”
As fans familiarize themselves with the future of robotic tech in the lead-up to the Avatar franchise’s sequels, they’ll have a much shorter wait time than for the follow-up films. That’s because these mech suits make their theme park debut on April 22.