Looks like another Disney attraction is joining its sizable graveyard of defunct rides. Earlier this year, the EPCOT division of Disney’s Florida park swapped out its popular Maelstrom river ride for a Frozen-themed attraction, causing wait times of up to five hours. Expect to see similarly super-sized lines when Disney California Adventure’s Twilight Zone Tower of Terror elevator drop gets a Marvel-ously out-of-this-world makeover to become Guardians of the Galaxy: Mission Breakout. Now, we’re learning that the Tower of Terror will close for good on Jan. 2, 2017 in preparation for the switchover.
The details of this new ride were revealed at Comic-Con in July via the below video, which promises park-goers an “immersive, exciting experience” set in the outer reaches of the MCU’s galaxy, where the titular Guardians — Star-Lord (Chris Pratt), Gamora (Zoe Saldana), Drax (Dave Bautista) and the dynamic duo Groot and Rocket (Vin Diesel and Bradley Cooper) — dwell.
Mission Breakout is one of the many ways that Disney and Marvel will be ramping up audience excitement for the James Gunn-directed sequel Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, which opens in theaters on May 5, 2017. But the team’s arrival in California Adventure does mean that the existing Twilight Zone brand name will vanish into a black hole, at least for now. Fortunately, the park is giving Rod Serling’s beloved sci-fi series a fitting farewell. As part of Disneyland’s annual “Halloween Time” that runs from Sept. 9 to Oct. 31, the Tower of Terror will have a special “Late Check-Out” version of the ride. That means that when the sun goes down, the lights within the Tower of Terror go out and riders will experience the plunge in total darkness.
Once the trick-or-treat season has passed, Disney has additional plans to celebrate the Tower of Terror prior to its closing. We can only imagine the candy-cane-colored nightmare they might dream up for the Christmas season.