Some familiar Star Wars heroes helped launch the new Galaxy’s Edge theme park attraction at Disneyland.
Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Billy Dee Williams, and Star Wars creator George Lucas were among the luminaries who helped cut the ribbon on the 14-acre fantasy world meant to bridge our planet and the galaxy far, far away.
On a stage set up outside the life-sized Millennium Falcon that rests in the center of the rocky-mountain town of Black Spire Outpost, Luke, Han, Lando, and the man who brought them to life welcomed the first crowd of guests to the planet Batuu.
First up, Disney Chairman and CEO Bob Iger welcomed Lucas to speak to the crowd, who invoked the name of the long-ago first Star Wars ride at Disneyland by calling Galaxy’s Edge “Star Tours on steroids.”
Then Williams made an appearance, talking about Lando Calrissian’s long history with the Falcon, and taking pride as her original owner.
Then it was Luke Skywalker’s turn. Hamill also spoke about Star Tours, saying that was the last time he was at such an event.
Finally, Iger called for the Millennium Falcon to fire its engines, but the old machine wouldn’t turn over.
He asked if anyone in the crowd knew how to fix it.
That’s when Ford appeared. Giving the hull of the ship a good whack, he called out to the late Chewbacca originator Peter Mayhew.
“Peter, this one’s for you,” Ford said.
Galaxy’s Edge opens in California on Friday and in Florida on August 29, but not all of the rides will be finished on opening day as the park is opening in stages. In Phase One, the Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run ride and most of the shops and restaurants will be fully operational, but the other major ride, Rise of the Resistance, won’t be ready until Phase Two, which Disney only says will begin “later this year.”
EW has toured the work in progress. Click here for our complete collection of stories about how Galaxy’s Edge aims to make guests part of their own Star Wars story, detailing the shops, the rides, the food, and more.