Star Wars Weekend parade stormtroopers at Disney's Hollywood Studios

The annual series of Star Wars Weekends have kicked off at Disney's Hollywood Studios, with this year's events being the last to feature the original Star Tours attraction.

The celebrations will take place over the next four weekends - May 21-23, May 28-30, June 4-6 and June 11-13. As well as featuring special parades, shows, autograph sessions and sales of "one-of-a-kind" memorabilia, the events will also give fans one last chance to ride Star Tours before it closes on September 8 to undergo a transformation to a new, 3-D version.

The Star Wars Weekends feature a large number of special events including parades, trivia contests and autograph sessions along with appearances from Star Wars characters (including a new "droid" version of Mickey Mouse, known as R2-MK). Guides to the event, which include listings of each day's activities, are available from the park entrance and from an information depot in front of the Sounds Dangerous attraction.

Friday's opening day coincides with the 30th anniversary of Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back, the second movie in the original Star Wars trilogy. Fans of all ages are expected to converge on Disney's Hollywood Studios to celebrate the occasion, with a chance to meet actors from movies being a major draw.

Celebrity guests available for autographs, photos and meet-and-greet sessions at 2010's Star Wars Weekends include:

May 21-23:

  • Temuera Morrison ("Jango Fett")
  • Daniel Logan ("Boba Fett")
  • Dee Bradley Baker (voice actor in Star Wars: The Clone Wars)

May 28-30:

  • Matthew Wood ("General Grievous")
  • Lorne Peterson (a model-maker at special effects house Industrial Light and Magic)
  • Tom Kane (voice of Yoda in Star Wars: The Clone Wars)

June 4-6:

  • Billy Dee Williams ("Lando Calrissian")
  • Ray Park ("Darth Maul")
  • Dave Filoni (supervising director of Star Wars: The Clone Wars)

June 11-13:

  • Ray Park ("Darth Maul")
  • Peter Mayhew ("Chewbacca")
  • James Arnold Taylor (voice of Obi-Wan Kenobi in Star Wars: The Clone Wars)

Star Wars Weekend entry carries no extra charge over and above the usual Disney's Hollywood Studios admission fee. For more details, see Disney's event website and the Orlando Sentinel's Star Wars Weekend survival guide.


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