Disney went all-in on Star Wars in its theme parks in 2019, but the story from "a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away" isn't even Disney's biggest entertainment franchise. That honor, as measured by total box office, goes to Marvel. And in 2020, it's Marvel's turn in the Disney parks.
The next attraction on the list of our most-anticipated additions for 2020 is Avengers Campus — coming to Disney California Adventure. It will be one of three Avengers Campuses at Disney Parks, with lands coming to Walt Disney Studios Paris and Hong Kong Disneyland, too.
The DCA version is taking over the former A Bug's Land space, with an opening expected in the latter half of the year. In Disney's backstory for the lands, the "Campus" in Avengers Campus stands for "Centralized Assembly Mobilized to Prepare, Unite and Safeguard." It will be the home of the "Worldwide Engineering Brigade" (i.e. WEB — ya think maybe Spider-Man will be involved here?), an organization that will work with the Avengers to recruit new heroes around the world.
Apparently, some Marvel character embedded at Walt Disney Imagineering has the superpower of being able to deconstruct any word as a relevant acronym. Alas. (A Linguist Attraction Specialist?)
As teased, the centerpiece of the new land will be a Spider-Man ride. That means theme park fans in 2020 finally will get the chance for an apples-to-apples comparison between Disney and Universal, as each company will have produced a dark ride based upon what might be Marvel's most famous character.
Disney's as-yet-unnamed attraction will be an interactive ride, with gameplay somewhat similar to the Ninjago rides at Legoland in California and Florida. You will use hand motions to sling "webs" to capture escaped Spiderbots for the WEB. The ride is going into the old It's Tough to Be a Bug building at DCA and later will take over the old Armageddon building in Paris.
The "who did Spidey better?" debate alone would be enough to push this new development onto a "most anticipated" list, but I also am fascinated by the idea of creating an original story that links multiple theme park lands around the world.
At the same time, I'm far more excited for the "phase two" attraction in Avengers Campus that Disney Parks chairman Bob Chapek teased last summer at the D23 Expo: a Quinjet ride to Wakanda where guests will board an all-new ride system for a battle alongside the Avengers to determine the fate of the world. That tease makes me suspect that the new Spider-Man ride might turn out to be the Smugglers Run to the future Avengers ride's Rise of the Resistance.
And that knocks Avengers Campus down a few spots on my list... at least until whatever year that new Quinjet adventure debuts.
Previously on "All aboard the 2020 Hype Train":
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