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Star Wars Weekends at Walt Disney World

Star Wars Weekends are an annual event at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. This year, The Force is even stronger at Walt Disney World Resorts and Parks, with the debut of the long awaited revamp of Star Tours – The Adventure Continues. Star Wars fans will have a bit more to celebrate this year during Star Wars Weekends. It’s is an annual special event at Disney’s Hollywood Studios theme park that celebrates the legendary Star Wars Saga and the animated television series, Star Wars: The Clone Wars. On Friday, Saturday and Sunday of each weekend, you can join celebrities and characters for special shows, panels, presentations and more!

This opening weekend of Star Wars Weekends, ThemeparkMom is there to experience Star Tours – The Adventure Continues firsthand. If you follow her on Twitter, you’l be able to see some of the first images of this new and updated experience at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Here are some of her images so far:

Storm Troopers invade Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Ewoks at Star Tours – The Adventure Continues

Next weekend, I’ll be there to check it out myself, along with my own Star Wars aficionado, my teen son. Last month while we spent a few days filming at the parks, we happened upon Jedi Training in progress. During Star Wars weekends, park guests ages 12 and younger can participate in the Jedi Academy. Be sure to check times when you enter the park for the day so that you don’t miss this exciting event.

Here’s a listing of the special guest appearances during Star Wars Weekends:

May 20 to 22
Anthony Daniels (C-3PO)
Daniel Logan (Episode II Boba Fett)
Special Guest: Dave Filoni (Supervising Director, Star Wars: The Clone Wars)

May 27 to 29
Anthony Daniels (C-3PO)
Bruce Spence (Tion Medon)
Voice Talent Guest: Dee Bradley Baker (Captain Rex, Star Wars: The Clone Wars)

June 3 to 5
Ray Park (Darth Maul)
Jeremy Bulloch (Boba Fett)
Voice Talent Guest: Matt Lanter (Anakin, Star Wars: The Clone Wars)

June 10 to 12
Ray Park (Darth Maul)
Peter Mayhew (Chewbacca)
Voice Talent Guest: Tom Kane (Yoda, Star Wars: The Clone Wars)

Here’s the official word from Disney about Star Tours – The Adventure Continues:

Based on the Star Wars films, Star Tours will take Walt Disney World Resort guests to multiple Star Wars destinations where they will interact with characters from throughout the Saga. And it will all be in 3-D.

With an eye-popping digital presentation leveraging Dolby 3-D to deliver a vivid and realistic experience, a dramatic musical score and motion simulator-based technology, guests will be immersed in the Star Wars galaxy like never before on a theme park attraction.

Star Tours, which had thrilled Disney Parks guests since the 1980s, was “powered down” at Disneyland and Disney’s Hollywood Studios in 2010 so Imagineers could begin work on the new attraction.

And in a new twist, guests may be able to enjoy the attraction multiple times without ever experiencing the same adventure. More than 50 story combinations are possible for guests to experience aboard Star Tours.

Just as the Star Wars films immerse movie-goers in storylines that keep them on the edge of their seats, Star Tours will feature multiple stories and scenarios that will hurtle park guests throughout the Star Wars galaxy. And all of the storyline’s twists and turns will be random, affording guests the chance to ride the attraction multiple times.

Whether it’s a battle with Darth Vader and his legion of stormtroopers or a plea from Princess Leia to help her save the Rebellion, guests will find themselves in the middle of the action – literally – in the 3-D, multi-sensory attraction.

Entering the attraction queue area, Star Tours guests walk into a bustling spaceport. The famed Star Wars droid duo, C-3PO and R2-D2, greet them as the Starspeeder 1000 is prepped for service. Anthony Daniels, the voice of C-3PO and the only actor to appear in every theatrical chapter of the Star WarsSaga, reprises his role as the golden protocol droid. Daniels worked with Walt Disney Imagineering to record new dialogue for the attraction. Guests also are introduced to AC-38, a hotshot droid pilot known simply as “Ace,” and Aly San San (voiced by actress Allison Janney), the “spokesbot” for the spaceport.

After winding through the spaceport, guests board the Starspeeder 1000 spacecraft and prepare for Star Tours Flight #1401. Through a series of mishaps, however, C-3PO finds himself in the pilot’s seat instead of Ace, and it’s up to him and R2-D2 to navigate their passengers through the galaxy. However, the tyrannical Empire is out to stop the Starspeeder at all costs. C-3PO and R2-D2 take the controls and try to outwit and outrun the Imperial forces and a galactic bounty hunter hired to pursue the spaceship and its passengers.

Utilizing the 50+ random story combinations, the Starspeeder then embarks on a wild trip through the galaxy, visiting several planets made famous in the Star Wars films.

Among the locations that might provide haven from the Empire’s pursuit are the icy planet of Hoth, the lush jungles of Kashyyyk and the underwater Gungan world of Naboo. And along the way guests may encounterStar Wars characters that offer to help (or hinder) their journey, including Yoda, Admiral Ackbar, Darth Vader and Boba Fett. “Skytroopers,” a legion of stormtroopers created just for the Star Tours attraction story, might even join in the chase.

In fact, with multiple ways to experience each flight, guests will never know where the Force will take them.

At Walt Disney World Resort, Star Tours opens May 20, 2011, the same day the annual Star Wars Weekends event begins at Disney’s Hollywood Studios theme park. Star Tours and Star Wars Weekends event activities are included in regular admission to Disney’s Hollywood Studios theme park.

Be sure to get your FastPass and experience Star Wars – The Adventure Continues the next time you visit Disney’s Hollywood Studios. I know I’ll be seeing it soon!

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