Is Disney's 'flying robot' about to come to Disneyland?

January 30, 2020, 1:52 PM · Remember that "flying robot" that Walt Disney Imagineering was building? You might have seen it while watching The Imagineering Story on Disney+ or maybe from copies of a publicity video from WDI that went viral about a year ago.

Anyway, whether you've seen it online or not, you might soon be seeing Disney's flying robot for real, inside a Disney theme park.

The Disneyland Resort today announced that Spider-Man will be swinging above the rooftops of the new Avengers Campus when the new Marvel-themed land opens in the old A Bug's Land space in Disney California Adventure this summer. Disney today released a teaser video of Spidey "practicing" his moves.

Hmmm... that looks familiar. Take off the brand-new Spider suit (designed for the parks by Ryan Meinerding, Head of Visual Development at Marvel Studios), and that looks an awful lot like the "Stuntronics" animatronic tested by WDI.

Disney rarely confirms the tech that it uses to create its theme park "magic," so I wouldn't be surprised if Disney does not connect the dots here. But the stuntronic "flying robot" wowed fans when that video dropped, so it's exciting to think that fans might be getting the chance to see it for themselves in just a few months.

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Replies (6)

January 30, 2020 at 8:41 PM

The real question is whether it’s going to be a one day thing that only the people there on opening day get to see like the dragon over new fantasyland or the x-wing over Star Wars.

January 31, 2020 at 10:24 AM

The X-Wings will be back.

The dragon effect would only work at night and its engine noises made it seem cheesy.

January 31, 2020 at 11:00 AM

Spider-Man swings around web-to-web, building-to-building, the test robot did one flying leap, it would have to do more than just one leap to be convincing.

January 31, 2020 at 1:00 PM

It looks really cool, but how much labor will this take to set it up, activate, recover and repeat? It makes me think hiring a few high wire performers might be less expensive in the long run.
How many shows can Robo-Spidy do an hour? Will it function like the it's a Small World clock and do shows every quarter-hour, will it be random?
So many questions.

January 31, 2020 at 1:12 PM

That does look pretty impressive. As Tracy mentioned, there's a "chance" it could just be an opening day event....but I'm wondering if it will potentially be a couple of times a day (watch Spidey swing @9am, 1pm & 6pm)

@Disfan, I think for many, that one leap would be convincing (or at least...entertaining). If it's not part of a larger "stage spectacle", I think they could get easily get away with a flying leap set to heroic music as a V.O. plays.

I'm sure in person there would be "oohs & ahhhs" from just seeing the character airborne as it flips & then disappears into a building. (Folks loved that flying Tinkerbell over the castle as a part of the fireworks show)

It appears that this (if it ends up lasting past opening day) is more of a cool window dressing element to Avengers Campus vs a stage show that guest would set down to watch. THEN it would have to do a lot more, but as simply an element to the land, I think the majority of guest would be happy seeing & snapping a photo or video of an airborne Spider-Man......even if it is just a single flip

January 31, 2020 at 1:44 PM

For me it's look at the different poses it can make, in their teaser video that was definitely an Iron Man looking pose. This doesn't have to JUST be Spider-Man, they could dress these up as any of the flight-capable Avengers like Thor, Iron Man, Scarlet Witch, Vision, Falcon, etc and have random flyovers throughout the day. Yeah it's not as dynamic as an actual fictional character and special effects but I think it would absolutely WOW most people just seeing them acrobatically fly over making such life-like poses

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