Star Tours: The Adventures Continue is a Disney simulator ride theme park attraction located at Disneyland at Disneyland Resort in California, Disney's Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World in Florida, Tokyo Disneyland at Tokyo Disney Resort in Tokyo, Japan and Disneyland Park at Disneyland Paris in Paris, France. It officially opened at Florida on May 20th, 2011, at California on June 3rd, 2011, at Tokyo on May 7th, 2013 and at Paris on March 18, 2017.
The attraction replaced the original Star Tours attraction and serves as its prequel, taking place in between Episodes III and IV and tying both trilogies together. Additional elements from Episode VII were added in late 2015 to promote the new film, while a scene depicting the planets Crait and Batuu from Episode VIII and Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge respectively were added on November 17, 2017.
This crawl was shown at the attraction's grand opening ceremony.
Unlike the original Star Tours, the ride has eighteen (originally eleven) segments that are randomly chosen during each viewing. In all, the various options result in 54 possible combinations. Two new segments added in 2015 to promote The Force Awakens are presently locked into place for the duration of the Season of the Force event, after which the proper randomization was enabled again. Additionally, variations of existing segments created in 2011 were activated for the first time, increasing variability further during the lock. The 2017 addition of material to promote The Last Jedi would bring in more Sequel Trilogy content to create a full experience focused around the era as a result of criticism of the Jakku segment mismatching with the rest of the attraction.
Queue and boarding
In one feature exclusive to the version of the ride at Tokyo Disneyland, guests first enter a room with a large video billboard advertising various travel destinations and revealing other details of the story, such as identifying the Star Tours terminal as only one part of Spaceport THX1138. In every version of the ride, guests then enter a hangar where C-3PO and R2-D2 are busy repairing a StarSpeeder 1000 while a large viewing screen displays commercials -- some hosted by droid Aly San San -- messages, flight lists and exterior views of a space station that presumably the waiting passengers are now inside, just like in the original attraction. Guests pass by security droid G2-9T x-raying luggage, where a monitor displays various items inside the luggage (including many Star Wars and Disney references). Guests also pass by droid customs, where RX-24 is malfunctioning with a sticker labeled "Defective: return to factory." After passing another droid screening passengers, G2-4T, guests reach the boarding area and watch video screens that display the outside of the starspeeder maintenance area where C-3PO speaks with the ships' pilot droid, AC-38, also known as Ace. C-3PO needs to sit in the pilot's seat to repair the binary motivator. Ace leaves to inspect the outside of the ship and then gets called away from the area. Guests then watch a safety video hosted by Aly San San. Ace does not return before the ship is elevated to the passenger boarding level, leaving C-3PO and R2-D2 on board the flight with passengers. Star Tours Flight 1401 is then cleared for take off despite C-3PO's protests, and R2-D2 takes control of the vessel.
This segment includes one of five scenes:
- Darth Vader and a group of stormtroopers arrive to prevent the ship from leaving. A video screen identifies one of the passengers as a Rebel spy. Vader uses the Force to stop the ship until R2-D2 fires the laser cannons, and the StarSpeeder exits the hangar backwards and is a chased by TIE fighters. The ship then evades Star Destroyers and escapes into hyperspace. Occasionally Boba Fett will be part of Vader's entourage.
- While the StarSpeeder is docked near the Millennium Falcon and Han Solo, a droid scans the ship and one of the passengers is identified as a Rebel spy, while outside Solo gets into a firefight with stormtroopers. The StarSpeeder then follows the Falcon as it flees the hangar and flies past Star Destroyers (causing severe damage to the bridge of one) before entering hyperspace.
- Kylo Ren (in place of Darth Vader) and First Order stormtroopers. Sequel-era variants of the above two featuring
The ship exits hyperspace above one of four planets:
- The ship reaches the surface of Hoth and follows snowspeeders in an attack run on an AT-AT. The ship hits the ground and slides down an icy mountain before flying back into space.
- On Kashyyyk, the ship is caught in a speeder bike chase through the forest with some Wookiees. Chewbacca is thrown from his bike and hits the ship's windshield. The speeder then leaves the forest and heads for space.
- The ship arrives at Tatooine and drops through the atmosphere into the middle of a pod race. After getting stuck to a pod racer and crossing the finish line, the ship heads back into space.
- Jakku in the midst of a chase between the Millennium Falcon and a squad of First Order TIE Fighters through the wreckage. Finn appears on the screen asking what Star Tours is doing here and tells them to stay low. Diving into a wrecked Star Destroyer and avoiding debris, the ship stumbles into a group of scavengers, who steal the Star Tours seal. The ship then leaves before more damage can be done and heads for space. The ship arrives on
Hologram messageOnce back in space, the StarSpeeder receives a holographic message from either Yoda, Admiral Gial Ackbar or Princess Leia, who explains that you must help get the Rebel on board safely to a rendezvous point, and then sends the coordinates to R2-D2. A hologram message from BB-8 appears where the droid asks for help with a secret mission to deliver vital information. 3PO refuses, but R2 accepts and makes a hyperspace jump. Another hologram option has Maz Kanata in the middle of a combat situation asking the crew to join the Resistance. A third hologram option featuring Poe Dameron asking for help has him surprised at seeing R2 and 3PO before getting right to business and sending them the coordinates.
After jumping through hyperspace, the ship reaches one of four destinations:
The ship ends up in the middle of a battle high above Coruscant, and is attacked by Buzz droids. R2 takes care of one droid, while the others are knocked off in the battle. The ship then flies through the city traffic below before reaching a landing platform, where either parked Starspeeders or the Millennium Falcon can be found.
The StarSpeeder reaches Naboo in the middle of a space battle. The ship then follows a group of N-1 starfighters to the surface, and eventually land in the ocean near a Gungan city, either dodging or crashing into Jar Jar Binks upon arrival. After traveling through the planet core and encountering dangerous sea creatures, the ship launches back to the surface and crash lands in a Rebel hangar, where it crashes into an N-1. The N-1's tail ends up inside the craft, smashing into the viewport, as a pit droid angrily shouts at Threepio.
Alternatively, the Starspeeder will only break the tail of the N-1 off, angering the pit droid working on it, resulting in him throwing paint onto the viewport.
In the Geonosis asteroid belt, the StarSpeeder is chased by Boba Fett in Slave I. The ship escapes but then encounters the incomplete, first Death Star while pursued by Vader and his TIE pilots. The ship escapes by flying right through the unfinished Death Star, but are then met again by Boba, who shoots a seismic charge at the ship. The starspeeder shoots it back, evading him and then heads into hyperspace to meet up with the Rebel fleet and land in the Home One's hangar bay.
The StarSpeeder arrives on Crait in the middle of the battle between the First Order and the Resistance. After escaping Tie Fighters by going through a cave, the StarSpeeder re-emerges in the midst of a battle with a group of All Terrain MegaCaliber Sixes and after taking down a few, the ship escapes to Batuu, where 3PO muses that their adventure is just beginning.
After years of rumors and speculation of an updated version of Star Tours, it was confirmed in April 2005, at Celebration III, where creator George Lucas announced that a Star Tours II was in production.
It was claimed at the 2009 D23 Expo, the official Disney fan convention, that there would not be a second ride introduced, but that instead the existing ride would be updated and improved. The original rides closed in 2010 (July 27th in California and September 8th in Florida) to allow Disney engineers to begin the updates and renovations. This new iteration of Star Tours re-opened on May 20th, 2011 at Disney's Hollywood Studios in Florida, and June 3, 2011 at Disneyland in California.
The new ride is in 3-D, and features the StarSpeeder 1000, bursting into the Boonta Eve Classic pod race. In a high resolution image of the scene provided to various media outlets, the 1000 designation on the speeder can be seen. It has also been confirmed that the new ride will also take passengers to Coruscant among other destinations, and there are rumors that the Endor flight will be reworked as well so that passengers will actually be going to Endor this time around. A new queue video "commercial" for the attraction was released in August 2010 at Celebration V which showed the Starspeeder traveling to Bespin, Endor and Alderaan, though it was not confirmed that these will actually be destinations within the ride. In April, the final destination list was released, adding Naboo, Geonosis with the Death Star I under construction, Kashyyyk, and Hoth joining the already announced Tatooine and Coruscant.
Due to timeline concerns by the Imagineers, they changed the plan for the Hoth sequence from featuring Imperial walkers to focusing on wampas and tauntauns. However, when the plans for this version of the sequence was presented to George, he insisted on using the walkers and offered an explanation to work the sequence in that the Rebels and the Empire had a skirmish there before and the reason the Rebels went back to establish Echo Base was that they believed the Empire would never suspect them returning there. 
In September, the official Disney Parks Blog revealed two droids from the new attraction: a pilot droid from the AC series named Ace (a predecessor to RX-24 from the original) and a "spokesbot" named Aly San San, voiced by actress Allison Janney. The blog also revealed that the ride's storyline takes place between Episode III and Episode IV (19 BBY and 0 BBY). At the Destination D23 event these new droids were announced at, it was also revealed there will be 54 different experiences on the attraction.
In October, it was revealed that, although Star Tours uses AC Droid pilots, it will be C-3PO who will pilot the Starspeeder 1000 in the attraction, through some chaotic mistake. The article also revealed that RX-24 would return, due to his popularity with thousands of fans.
In January, it was announced that Star Tours: The Adventures Continue would open on May 20th, 2011 at Disney's Hollywood Studios in Florida. In February, it was announced that the ride would open on June 3rd, 2011 at Disneyland in California. That same month, the Disney Parks Blog revealed that ride passengers would encounter Darth Vader, Boba Fett and Imperial jumptroopers. A May 2011 interview with Tom Fitzgerald revealed that Jar Jar Binks would also appear, and that James Earl Jones and Frank Oz would reprise their roles as Vader and Yoda. The interview also revealed that the StarSpeeders will travel underwater and slide on ice. On May 14th, almost one week before its official opening, early previews of the ride began at Disney Hollywood Studios in Florida.
Similar to the original Star Tours, there were multiple versions of the ride that varied depending on the theme park location. In November 2011, it was announced that a new ride would open at Tokyo Disneyland in Spring of 2013. Tokyo Disneyland featured most of the characters and aspects of the original American version of the rides at Disneyland and Disney's Hollywood Studios. However, it also featured some additional content, such as an in-depth explanation of the spaceport shown in the queue area and rides, including the name of the spaceport in question (Spaceport THX1138). It also showed several additional info about the location advertisements, as well as additional characters and droid models. It also featured three language settings: Aurebesh, English, and Japanese. At the end of the ride, three droids, specifically F-25-OJSx, F-24-AMTx, and HHG-RX were seen in poses mirroring that of the Hitchhiking Ghosts from the Disney ride Haunted Mansion.
On November 9th, 2015, a new segment set on Jakku was announced in order to promote The Force Awakens, as part of Disneyland and Disney's Hollywood Studios's "Season of the Force" event. Additionally, variants of existing segments created for the original 2011 show were activated for the first time, such as a version of the Vader opening featuring Boba Fett, an altered Naboo segment where the Starspeeder hits the Gungan while visiting Otoh Gunga and the windshield is splattered with paint at the hangar, and a version of the Coruscant ending where Chewbacca greets guests from the Millennium Falcon cockpit.
On March 18th, 2017, the Disneyland Paris version opened. While similar to its counterparts, Paris expands on the "old droids in shipping containers" idea and has relocated ROX-N and the original Goose Droids to additional shipping containers, with new builds of the upgraded GT droids taking over those spots.
On April 15, 2017, it was announced at Star Wars Celebration Orlando that a new segment set on Crait would be added in order to promote The Last Jedi. The segment was activated on November 17, 2017 and additionally to Crait, it also included Batuu, a planet created for Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge.
As with the original version, upon exiting the ride, passengers are led to a store which sells merchandise based on Star Wars and the ride itself. This includes action figures, clothing, etc. At Disneyland the store is The Star Trader. At Disney's Hollywood Studios, the store is Tatooine Traders, themed to resemble the buildings of Mos Eisley and Mos Espa. Both stores include some exclusive merchandise sold only at Disney theme parks, including action figures of the various droids seen in the ride and queue and StarSpeeder 1000 toys.
The idea of going to Kashyyyk was suggested by John Lasseter, principal creative adviser at Walt Disney Imagineering, and chief creative officer at Disney and Pixar Animation. During the droid's scan in the stormtrooper opening, two of the images that flash by in the video hologram are photos of John Lasseter and George Lucas.
References to the original ride are included when Threepio echoes a line from RX-24, saying, "I've always wanted to do this," (referring to a pod race, instead of the original's Death Star trench run) and again when he yells "Brakes! Brakes! Where are the brakes?!" while careening through the Naboo hangar.
The G2 repair droids in the queue line (also found in the original version of the queue) are actually the skeletons of Audio-Animatronic geese from an old Disneyland show, America Sings. They were removed from the show during the last 2 years of its run. The droids can be heard singing variations of "I've been working on the railroad, all the livelong day," a reference to the song sung by the geese. The New Essential Guide to Droids nicknamed the G2s "Goose droids" as a nod to this show.
In the ride queue, after G2-9T somehow starts causing alarms to go off and gets a call from his supervisor, the droid at one point says "Uh, everything's perfectly alright now, w-we're fine. We're all fine here now, thank you. Uh, how are you?," a paraphrase of what Han Solo said when trying to maintain cover after killing most of the security detail for the Detention Block AA-23 in A New Hope. He also says "Boring conversation, anyway" after cutting his supervisor off mid-sentence, which was also from the same film (specifically, after Solo blasted the communications console).
One of the items scanned in the luggage by G2-9T was a Goofy doll, causing him to comment on its ambiguously man- or dog-like appearance, as well as stating that the design was really goofy. When finding a Goofy Hat in another luggage set, G2-9T will also mistake the hat as being based on Jar Jar Binks. Similarly, a Chip and Dale doll set, also seen in a scanned luggage set, will have G2-9T remarking that they were clones. He also, upon discovering the magic lamp from Aladdin, mentions that the Star Tours' non-smoking policy extends to luggage as well. Wall-e, from the Pixar film of the same name, can also be seen in one of the scans, attempting to get G2-9T’s attention, presumably so he can be let out of the suitcase he is in. G2-9T however fails to see this, and clears the suitcase without noticing.
According to "The Incredible Journey," an article in Star Wars Insider 127, the events of Star Tours: The Adventures Continue occurred at some point between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope. While the attraction itself does not provide precise data about its chronology, the exact dating of the new Star Tours can be narrowed down by cross-checking with other sources. In The Adventures Continue, the Rebel Alliance is shown to exist. The attraction must therefore take place after the foundation of that group; according to The Complete Star Wars Encyclopedia, Vol. I, p. 143, the Alliance was officially formed in 2 BBY with the signing of the Corellian Treaty.
Additionally, the attraction features Gial Ackbar as a commander of the Alliance Fleet. Since Ackbar was only freed from Imperial slavery in 1 BBY, The Adventure Continues necessarily happened at some point between 1 and 0 BBY. This is also backed-up by a comment the droid G2-9T made in the queue of the ride. According to the droid, Yavin 4 was already the site of the Rebel headquarters at the time in which the attraction takes place. According to the 121st issue of The Official Star Wars Fact File, the Alliance only retrieved the key to the Massassi Temple in 1 BBY. The Star Wars Blog article Convenient Daily Departures: The History of Star Tours finally placed the ride's date at about 1 BBY.
The seasonal Season of the Force version of the attraction, which includes a scene set on Jakku, characters Finn and BB-8, and the First Order, is anachronistic with the timeline presented throughout the rest of the attraction. In one scene, riders are confronted by Darth Vader, and encounter Finn in the next, even though Vader would have been long dead by the time of the events presented in the latter scene. Thus, it can be assumed that the events presented in these scenes are non-canon within the Legends continuity. Further Sequel Trilogy additions in 2017 would smooth out some of these issues by creating a new Kylo Ren intro and a reworked version of the Stormtrooper intro featuring the First Order stormtroopers.
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Notes and references
- Star Tours: The Adventures Continue page at official Walt Disney World website
- Star Tours: The Adventures Continue page at official Disneyland website
- Star Tours: The Adventures Continue page at official Tokyo Disneyland website
- Star Tours: The Adventures Continue page at official Disneyland Paris website
- Star Tours: The Adventures Continue Review at TheForce.net
- Queue area and onboard video from Disney at Youtube.com
- Video of the Jakku and BB-8 sequences added in 2015 at Youtube.com
- Star Tours: The Adventures Continue at EndorExpress.net
- Review: Star Tours: l'Aventure Continue at EndorExpress.net