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Future World May Never be the Same Again if Epcot's Rumored New Ride Goes Ahead

Though plans are currently underway to transform Disney's Hollywood Studios from a half-day park to a full-day destination (thanks to Star Wars Land and Toy Story Land), it looks like the park with the next big update coming will be Epcot. We weren't sure about it before, but it seems like the new energy injected into this park by the opening of Frozen Ever After in the World Showcase's Norway Pavilion has given Disney decision-makers the confidence to go ahead and completely re-work Epcot in an effort to move away from science, technology, and cultural experiences, and instead inject familiar characters and IPs that will draw bigger crowds (the way Frozen has done). 

While there are plenty of rumored changes in the works at Epcot, this week we got some pretty conclusive evidence that yet another non-fictional attraction is going to be closed very soon and will eventually be replaced by a character-based new attraction in the near future. But if you think this is going to be another situation like Frozen Ever After (which was a quick overlay that essentially used all the "guts" of the attraction formerly known as Maelstrom to create a surprisingly good, albeit familiar attraction), you might actually be wrong, as Disney's newest plan to bring a popular group of characters to Epcot looks like it will be more extensive than many originally thought... 

Guardians of the Galaxy is almost certain to be coming to Epcot's Future World now, and it's going to be more than just an overlay

Image: Disney

It was only a few weeks ago that we reported that Disney executives were reportedly considering a plan to gut the current Universe of Energy building in Future World (currently home to the truly dated Ellen’s Energy Adventure) and replace the insides with a new attraction featuring the Guardians of the Galaxy. While Disney has yet to officially confirm anything yet in regards to this project, it looks like this rumored new attraction has moved one step closer to becoming a reality. WDWMagic reports that height balloons (which are commonly used to test sight lines throughout the park while plans for new attractions are being drawn up and finalized) were seen yesterday at Epcot flying over various spots on and around the Universe of Energy building.

The presence of these height balloons strengthens the theory that this rumored new addition will involve making substantial changes to the Universe of Energy building, and won’t involve simply repurposing the existing attraction structure (like other recent attraction changes at Epcot like Frozen Ever After, The Seas With Nemo and Friends, etc.) We don’t know if the entire building is going to be simply modified or completely bulldozed, but it looks like Disney is at least looking into the possibility of doing some major construction in this space to make room for this new attraction. 

Of course, it is important to remember that nothing about this new attraction has been confirmed by Disney yet and it is technically still not too late for Disney to change their minds on this project (Disney has cancelled plenty of projects at the last minute, after all). However, with height balloon testing now happening inside the park, it looks like things are moving in a very positive direction for this still-unconfirmed new attraction. While we might be months (or perhaps even longer) away from an official announcement confirming a Guardians of the Galaxy ride for Epcot, we would be surprised if a closing date for Ellen’s Energy Adventure isn’t announced in the very near future as the park gets ready to move on this project.

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There are 11 comments.

Personally I will be very sad to see the Universe of Energy go. That was my favorite ride as a child in the 80's. I mean it has real dinosaurs in it what's not to love! But objectively it is extremely dated and doesn't see many visitors these days. It will be very interesting to see how Disney execs handle Epcot. It seems like they are pretty willing to throw away the mission statement of Epcot in exchange for bringing in IPs into the park. Not sure how I feel about this. On one hand it is the possibility of new and exciting experiences into this park. On the other hand it cheapens what Epcot is about. To me the best overlay was Finding Nemo as they expertly injected an IP into an existing attraction and were still able to keep the educational aspect of it intact.

This saddens me. Epcot was wonderful, and has suffered from neglect, and now is being killed

I'm good with adding IP to EPCOT. But, if Gardians is going into California at Tower of Terror why not do the same in Florida? They can and should replace Universe of Energy but they have so many possibilities. How about an Inside Out?. Maybe Big Hero 6 or The Incredibles or Tron or Wreck It Ralph. All would seem to fit.

Why would Disney kill a ride that is still in use when they could just put it where the old closed and decaying Wonders of Life pavilion is

Wouldn't a guardians of the galaxy ride eventually brake the contract between Disney and universal when the guardians of the Galaxy join the avengers in infinity gauntlet? I'm hoping that it does because if not this attraction will be the final blow for a park that is already dying because of neglect and mixed themes.

Thank god they're not touching TOT. I doubt hey would ever touch it anyways, it's one of the most popular in all of WDW, and They'd never mess with that. and Epcot is the one that needs much of an update. Hoping inside out attraction can come too

I might be ok with it, if they keep the attraction focused about energy, but if it's general action ride, I say go out there and protest against it!
Epcot was suppose to be teaching people stuff, and connecting them with the rest of the world, but now they're trying to change it into a generic money-making park! That's not right and spitting on Walt's grave!

Why can't Guardians teach us about energy? Anything new in Epcot is an improvement.

The park is in dire need of more attractions. There's a reason lines are getting longer, nothing to look at in the Innovations buildings (Communicores had all kinds of exhibits), Wonders of Life closed, Horizons replaced with Mission Space that can't handle near the same passengers per hour, Test Track while awesome can't keep up with World of Motion for passengers per hour, the list goes on. Moving away from technology and the future is the wrong direction. There's a reason it's not cool to wear a Mickey Mouse tie or have a Disney Polo Shirt in the office any more. EPCOT was the key to bringing together the older demographic. Replacing rides with cheap themed garbage to make a buck will be their downfall. Sure it'll be fun once or twice, bUT I miss the old rides I could go on time and again and never get tired of.

Disney will be cheapening Epcot by taking away the science. But if you must, don't mess with SSE. Or, at least change it back to the superior Jeremy Irons version. Some of us enjoy science and history. What other major theme park in the county provides this as extensively as Epcot? The park doesn't need a coaster or a drop tower. But it can always use more history, more science, more future hope, more culture!

Very disappointed in the direction Disney is taking it's parks. Character rides should be in the Studios. EPCOT should continue to be dedicated to technology and the future. Universal is kicking Disney's tail when it comes to rides. The Harry Potter experience is just awesome - Disney just isn't keeping up!

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