/ Monday, September 17th, 2007

star-tours-logo-disney.jpgStar Tours is a simulator ride located in many of the Disney theme parks, including Disneyland in California, Disney-MGM Studios in Florida, Disneyland Paris in France, and Tokyo Disneyland in Japan. The ride is based on the successful “Star Wars” franchise of movies, created by George Lucas. This made it, notably, the first of the park’s attractions that did not use Disney-designed imagery.

Although it has existed since 1987, it is considered by many aficionados to be the epitome of the ride form, melding a full sensory experience with the familiarity of a proven entertainment franchise. The first incarnation of the ride appeared in Tomorrowland at Disneyland in 1987, replacing the previous attraction, Adventure  Thru Inner Space.

Grand Openings:
Disneyland: January 9, 1987
Tokyo Disneyland: July 12, 1989
Disney-MGM Studios: December 15, 1989
Disneyland Paris: April 12, 1992 (Opened with Disneyland Paris)

Designer: Walt Disney Imagineering, Industrial Light and Magic
Number of flight simulators: 6 – each hold 40 passengers
Height Requirement: 40″ (102cm)
Show Length: [4:30]
Ride System: Flight simulator with Audio-Animatronics and film
Sponsors: Walt Disney World: Energizer

  • While waiting in line, a voice announcement calls out for an illegally parked speeder license number THX-1138, which is the name of the first film made for commercial distribution by George Lucas.
  • REX, your pilot, “has a very bad feeling about this” when the ship flies into one of the comets. This a running gag in all of the Star Wars films.
  • The fuel tanker that the StarSpeeder 3000 almost runs into at the end has on its side a hazardous materials sign and registration number. The registration number is Lucasfilm’s old office phone number.
  • The passengers on the pre-ride video are Imagineers and their families.
  • During the ride, Rex says that he’s always wanted to do this. In the Star Wars book “Tales from the Mos Eisley Cantina,” it states that there was a droid at the Death Star who “announced it had always wanted to do this.”
  • The work crews shown in the docking bays and control rooms of the film are actually members of the Industrial Light & Magic model shop staff. In fact, ILM Visual Effects Supervisor Dennis Muren and his crew can be seen diving out of the way when Rex accidentally steers the StarSpeeder 3000 toward the control room on the right.
  • REX, your pilot, is voiced by Paul “Pee-Wee Herman” Ruebens.
  • The G2 repair droids in the queue line are actually the skeletons of two goose animatronics from America Sings. They were removed from the show for this attraction during the last 2 years of its run.
  • REX also bears a bright red tag that says “Warning! Remove before Flight”
  • On the PA system in the waiting area, a voice says, “Mr. Egroeg Sacul, Mr. Egroeg Sacul”, which is George Lucas spelled backwards.