Disney Parks 'Star Wars' Land Introduces a New Planet Called Batuu

Sunday, 19 November 2017 - 3:58PM
Star Wars
Sunday, 19 November 2017 - 3:58PM
Disney Parks 'Star Wars' Land Introduces a New Planet Called Batuu
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With all the talk about how immersive the upcoming Star Wars lands at both Disney parks will be (they'll be called Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge), Disney and Lucasfilm have kept up their standard amounts of secrecy in explaining what guests will be doing, save for some details like getting to choose between the Resistance and the First Order, and watching different things in the park react to you differently depending on your choice.

But Galaxy's Edge will be story-heavy, and that includes being set in an entirely new planet called "Batuu." In a surprise addition to the Star Tours ride in both Disneyland, California and Hollywood Studios in Disney World, Florida, new footage from Star Wars: The Last Jedi was added alongside a look at this mysterious new planet, which was shown frequently in Galaxy's Edge concept art but now finally has a name.

Much like Los Angeles and Orlando, Batuu is a warm, temperate land and a seedy haven for all manner of outlaws and rebels. Visually, the planet has much of the dirty, cracked architecture from Tatooine combined with a more green landscape like Naboo.

You won't get a chance to see the distant world in person until the Star Wars lands open in Disneyland and Disney World in 2019, but here's the full description of Batuu, from Disney Creative Executive (and Imagineer) Scott Trowbridge on the Disney Parks blog

Opening quote
"This remote outpost on the galaxy's edge was once a busy crossroads along the old sub-lightspeed trade routes, but its prominence was bypassed by the rise of hyperspace travel. Now home to those who prefer to stay out of the mainstream, it has become a thriving port for smugglers, rogue traders and adventurers traveling between the frontier and uncharted space. It's also a convenient safe haven for those intent on avoiding the expanding reach of the First Order."
Closing quote

If you want a better look at the "planet" that will be the central hub for visiting Disney park guests, Disney also released a look at a scale model of their park earlier in the year, although without naming where in the Star Wars universe this was supposed to be:

If Disney and Lucasfilm felt it was necessary to invent an entirely new planet for their theme park, then the end result that is Batuu makes some sense. As mentioned before, the fact that it's basically a forest version of Tatooine gives it a vague but quintessentially Star Wars feel: dirty, run-down locations that are nevertheless full of futuristic technology, rebel fighters, and presumably lots of wandering droids. 

So Batuu is a combination of everything fans might expect to see in a galaxy far, far away, and it's apparently a spot that's visited by the characters from the new films, who will no doubt appear in the various rides (the Millennium Falcon is parked there in concept art). Don't expect to see Batuu in The Last Jedi or any games or books, but the planet invented just for a theme park has now found its way into official canon.

There's no official opening date for Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge, but it's expected to open in both major Disney parks sometime in 2019.
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