Greetings from D23 Expo 2017! Disney’s big biennial convention is well underway now and like other Expos, one of the must-dos on this year’s show floor is the Walt Disney Parks and Resorts pavilion, hosted by Walt Disney Imagineering. It’s all about Star Wars this year, and while the pavilion as a whole is fairly sparse (more on that in a bit), the massive scale model of Disneyland and Walt Disney World’s Star Wars-themed lands is nothing short of show stopping. The model gives a full visual overview of the land but aside from a couple hints buried in concept art and a couple maquettes on display; details on dining, shopping, and attractions remain totally absent… will Saturday’s Parks and Resorts presentation with Parks Chairman Bob Chapek reveal more? We certainly hope so!

UPDATE 8:15 P.M. Friday, July 14: Star Wars Land rumored to be officially named “Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge”
Rumor is circulating online that the name of the new Star Wars-themed lands at Disneyland and Walt Disney World will be officially named Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. The breaking news comes after a Reddit user posted that they discovered the official name buried in Disney Parks Blog source code. As of this update, this is still rumor but we’ll likely get confirmation either way at tomorrow’s Disney Parks and Resorts presentation with Disney Parks Chairman Bob Chapek. Stay tuned here for more info from D23 Expo 2017!

UPDATE: CONFIRMED Saturday, July 15: The name of the new Star Wars-themed lands coming to Disneyland and Walt Disney World was confirmed to be the previously rumored Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge during Saturday’s Parks and Resorts presentation with Bob Chapek. A banner was added to the Parks and Resorts pavilion with the new name after the announcement was made.

The entrance to the Walt Disney Parks and Resorts pavilion, dubbed “A Galaxy of Stories,” makes it clear that Star Wars is the star this year.

Walking in…

Display cases in the entry area of the pavilion showcase some familiar sights from the Star Wars galaxy.

…Along with some items that may play a role in the land, which is expected to be richly detailed, interactive, and full of living characters.

Maquette of the ride vehicle for the still-unnamed “battle escape” attraction. Looks like Disneyland will finally get a major indoor attraction utilizing the trackless ride technology that’s been wowing guests for years in Tokyo, Hong Kong, and Paris.

Keep an eye out for this Resistance Turret later on in the scale model of the land… Will this be the queue entrance gateway to the First Order “battle escape” attraction?

First Order uniform — will this be the Cast Member costume for the Battle Escape attraction?

After Saturday’s Parks and Resorts presentation with Bob Chapek, a banner over the entrance to the model area of the pavilion was added, with the land’s official name — Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge

The main feature of the pavilion is the stunning and massive scale model of the new Star Wars-themed land coming to both Disneyland in Anaheim and Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Orlando in 2019.

This is the side of Star Wars Land that guests will enter from the Big Thunder Trail area of Disneyland

Entrance path into Star Wars Land from the Big Thunder Trail entrance closest to Fantasyland

Details high above the Millennium Falcon ride

Shops and dining of Star Wars Land…

The other Big Thunder Trail entrances to Star Wars Land

The entrance to Star Wars Land from the new Critter Country path. The rockwork in this photo hides the side of the First Order battle escape attraction

There’s the Resistance Turret again… likely the queue entrance to the Battle Escape attraction

Note the cliff wall on the painted backdrop in the photo below — is Disney planning on investing in cliffside theming for the side of Mickey and Friends parking structure that might be visible from some vantage points within the land?

Detail of the Battle Escape facade

Possibly outdoor vending or merchandise carts

The large black portal is likely the exit to the attraction, emptying into the village part of the land on the right

Disney released a video overview of the model on Thursday night

Banners showcase some previously-unreleased concept art for the land

A small display on the outside of the pavilion showcases Star Tours for its 30th anniversary

Next door, Mickey’s of Glendale, the famous Imagineering store, has a pop-up shop with some must-haves for Disney theme park fans

Overall, the pavilion is fairly sparse this year, especially when compared to the last Expo, which provided an exhaustive and elaborate rundown of everything in store for guests at Shanghai Disneyland. This year’s “Galaxy of Stories” showcases the galaxy but is pretty sparse on the stories, with little info actually shared here. Guests are left to speculate what the features of the model are, and maquettes on display are vague and without context. Hopefully we’ll get more information at Saturday’s Parks and Resorts presentation with Disney Parks Chairman Bob Chapek. Even still, why show so little when you’re dedicating such a significant footprint to Parks and Resorts on the show floor?

Stay tuned for more coverage from the 2017 D23 Expo here on MiceChat!