A Marvel-themed land will come to Disney California Adventure theme park at the Disneyland Resort.
Avengers Campus will feature Disney Parks' first-eve Spider-Man ride when it opens June 4, 2021.
There will be three places to eat, including an "Ant-Man and the Wasp"-themed restaurant.
A huge Marvel expansion is coming to Disney California Adventure (DCA) at the Disneyland Resort on June 4, 2021. It was originally supposed to open last July.
Avengers Campus will unite all of your favorite superheroes (and some villains), introduce an immersive Spider-Man ride that will let you sling webs like Spidey, and have a restaurant inspired by "Ant-Man and the Wasp."
I was able to get a sneak peek at the highly-anticipated campus with a group of journalists in March 2020 before the park closed due to the coronavirus pandemic. At the time, it was very much a work-in-progress, but when it's complete, it will put guests right in the middle of their own Marvel adventure.
"This land is finally the invitation for all of us to join the Avengers, all of us to join the team, and all of us to actually find the hero within," said Brent Strong, executive creative director for Avengers Campus, during the event.
Then-chairman of Disney Parks, Bob Chapek, unveiled the first details of DCA's Avengers Campus in August 2019 at Disney's biannual fan event D23 Expo.
Below is everything I learned about Avengers Campus from last August and my six-hour day in the theme park from the many people bringing the land to life across the Marvel and Walt Disney Imagineering teams.
Here's how Avengers Campus will look at Disney California Adventure's theme park when it's complete.
The Marvel land will be a natural extension of 2017's Guardians of the Galaxy — Mission: Breakout! attraction. Avengers Campus will replace the Bug's Land section that used to be in the park, based on Pixar's "A Bug's Life."
The idea of the land is to inspire and recruit a new generation of heroes.
The word campus is actually an acronym that stands for "Centralized Assembly Mobilized to Prepare, Unite, and Safeguard."
Dave Bushore, vice president of franchise creative and marketing at Marvel Studios, said Avengers Campus is very much rooted in the idea that this is a place Tony Stark's father, Howard, built.
"Our message with the campus is that the idea that Tony [Stark] learned he wants to be more than a weapons manufacturer [in 'Iron Man']," Bushore told Insider. "He wants to help the world in a great way. He is taking everything his father built... and turning it into a place for everybody to help train people and spread that message of heroism."
Avengers Campus will have the first Spider-Man themed attraction at a Disney park.
Web Slingers: A Spider-Man Adventure will invite guests to become heroes alongside Spider-Man. The ride will take place at the Worldwide Engineering Brigade (WEB).
"At WEB, young inventors, like Peter Parker, have been brought together by Tony Stark to help create technologies that allow everyday people like us to have powers just like the Avengers," said Strong of the backstory to the new building.
Tom Holland will reprise his role as Spider-Man on the attraction to take fans through the ride.
The ride will follow guests as they check out an open house at WEB with Peter Parker and others like Cassie Lang and Harley Keener.
"It just so happens that when we visit the campus, they're having an open house and they're demonstrating this brand new slinger vehicle that's going to let every single one of us live out our Spider-Man dreams and sling webs just like Spider-Man," said Strong.
But, naturally, things don't go according to plan when visitors go inside the attraction.
"We find out that they're not as well funded as Stark Enterprises. They're not quite as militaristic as S.H.I.E.L.D. In fact, they're not all that organized at all," Strong added. "These are some kids that have some amazing power... they probably have a little more power than responsibility."
During the ride, one of the experiments, a spiderbot, escapes and starts self-replicating and destroying Parker's lab. When they start escaping onto Avengers Campus, guests have to help Parker and his friends to help round up all of the bots.
Guests of all ages will be able to sling webs like Spider-Man on the attraction.
Parker invites guests to get into the slinger vehicles seen above and it'll be up to us to catch all of the spiderbots to save the campus.
"Guests are wearing 3D glasses. This attraction does use a hybrid of physical sets, practical effects, as well as virtual set extensions to bring this epic universe to life," said Strong.
If you're familiar with Disney rides, I was told Web Slingers will be a mix between Toy Story Midway Mania and the upcoming Ratatouille ride at Disney World's Epcot park. But instead of using a blaster or interface, guests will just be able to reach out and use their arms, without holding onto anything, to sling webs.
"In order to do that, we invented a brand new interface," said Strong of how this is possible. "This is a gesture recognition system that we have built into every slinger vehicle. 60 times a second we are able to determine where a guest's head is, their shoulders, their elbows, and even their wrists."
This is technology the team has been prototyping for more than two years.
Strong said they're able to track the motion of guest's bodies so when they reach out, they can render a virtual web coming right out of the palm of your hand and your virtual web shooter. You'll be able to see the webs as you shoot them to try and collect up all of the spiderbots.
The best thing about the new attraction is that it won't have any height limitations. Everyone will be able to try this.
When the themed land opens, over a dozen Marvel heroes will be featured.
Executive creative director for Disney Parks live entertainment Dan Fields told Insider more than a dozen heroes ranging from Captain Marvel and Spider-Man to Thor, Ant-Man, and Iron Man will all be at Avengers Campus. While Doctor Strange and Spidey will have designated locations, others will be wandering the park, interacting with guests.
"Because it's a campus, people are coming and going," said Fields of why all of the characters aren't set at stationary points. "They're working, they're playing, they're training, they're protecting."
"For Captain America to be able to roam and interact with guests in a new way, let alone bump into other heroes and have interactions, there are some combinations of conversations and interactions you're going to experience that haven't played out here before," added Fields. "It's pretty exciting."
For the first time, guests will be able to meet Black Panther's bodyguards, the Dora Milaje, and train with them. Though he's not pictured above, Iron Man will be there as well in a suit that's being referred to as the Mark 80.
Who else could we see at some point in Avengers Campus? There's the potential to see new heroes after a movie or show comes out.
When Insider asked Bushore about the possibility of seeing the integration of Marvel's upcoming heroes from "The Eternals" after the film's November release or characters from "WandaVision," he said the potential is certainly there.
"There's always stuff coming and it's about what can be done at the level at which the Imagineers do it, and bring it to life in that authentic way," said Bushore. "If it works great, and we're always looking for those opportunities. So again, like I said, there's some fun stuff coming soon. I wish I could say a little bit more, but I would say that the opportunities are there and we're going to take advantage of as many of them."
You'll be able to visit Doctor Strange in his own area called the Sanctum.
Doctor Strange will teach guests the secrets of the mystic arts in the ruins of the Ancient Sanctum seen above.
Some of the trees located in this area will be the same ones replanted from A Bug's Land.
Wait. When does all of this take place? Before "Avengers: Endgame"? After? Neither.
"It takes place right here, right now," Bushore told Insider. "We're not dating it per se. It is happening right here, right now is the answer."
"For us, it's always about the new opportunities and I think we have a wealth of those with what we can do in the parks and what we can get with D+ [Disney Plus] and what we can do with the films," he added. "So, for the land, setting it here and now allows us to be even more open to those possibilities."
So how can a character like Tony Stark/Iron Man be wandering around in the park if he died in "Avengers: Endgame"? The multiverse.
This question came up a lot at the preview event. In a statement, a Disney Parks' representative said the following about when Avengers Campus fits into the Marvel Cinematic Universe timeline: "We know now that there's a vast multiverse with an infinite number of timelines and dimensions; we live in one where the Super Heroes have assembled from across time and space to meet with us at Avengers Campus."
At the end of "Avengers: Endgame," we watched Loki branch off into a different timeline during the "Avengers," which should be explored in his Disney Plus series.
As Nick Fury said at the end of "Iron Man," we're becoming part of a bigger universe.
The area will also incorporate elements from Disney Plus shows.
The Marvel and Walt Disney Imagineering teams discussed how they can incorporate Disney Plus series into the world.
"It takes a lot of trust from our whole organization to say, 'Hey, we're going to start building this building, but the story, we're going to wait on until we know the full series of what's happening with all the Disney Plus shows," said portfolio creative executive at Walt Disney Imagineering Scot Drake of what they have to consider when they start working on these lands years in advance.
Things from "WandaVision," "Loki," "The Falcon and the Winter Soldier" could wind up in the park as Easter eggs.
The reverse will also be possible. We may see Avengers Campus influence what you see in the future of the Marvel Cinematic Universe in films or shows.
"Peyton Reed worked on the 'Ant-Man and Wasp' attraction for Hong Kong and he's done stuff for the Imagineering team before, so he brings a passion and knowledge to it," said Bushore of speaking with filmmakers and writers about what they're doing in the parks in the past.
"They're working on 'Ant-Man 3,'" he continued. "Not to say that there's anything we've done here, but being able to go to Peyton and say, 'Hey, we have an idea for a thing in the land,' he'd go, 'Oh cool, OK, let's hear it.' The people that work on this stuff are just as big of fans as the fans themselves. And so they want to play in every sandbox they can. So when we bring stuff to them they're open to it and excited by it."
The Pym Test Kitchen is the primary restaurant that will be located inside the campus.
"Superheroes don't normally open restaurants, but what they would do, is use their technology to help the world," said Avengers Campus story development lead, Jillian Pagan, of the story behind the "Ant-Man and the Wasp"-inspired eatery.
The Pym Test Kitchen plays with combinations of large and small-sized food, ranging from chicken sandwiches to pasta dishes with large and small meatballs.
Each food item at the test kitchen is labeled as an experiment number. Two of the main dishes that will be available seen above are the Not So Little Chicken Sandwich and Impossible Spoonful. The latter comes with plant-based meatballs and cheese.
Though there will be large and small offerings of food, Disney representatives told press all silverware at the restaurant will be regular-sized despite the tiny fork in the photo above.
Alcohol will also be available to purchase at the park.
"There is also, at the Pym Test Kitchen, our Pym Tasting Lab, which is our outdoor seating area," said Jillian Pagan, story development lead on Avengers Campus, of the area which is marked by an oversized beer can. "We don't just want to experiment on food, we also have to, in the name of science, make sure that Pym particles can work on beer [and] cocktails."
Eight beers will be on tap and there will be several different cocktails and beer cocktails to enjoy. You can read the list of drinks coming to the park here.
The Terran Treats cart will have churro treats and crispy cream puffs.
The cart will be located right next to the Guardians of the Galaxy — Mission: Breakout! attraction.
It's run by Marvel anti-hero the Collector. He's using the cart to try and lure in guests to his fortress where the Guardians ride is located. If you're a Marvel fan, you know the Collector loves to collect rare and interesting objects. Naturally, he thinks humans would make a perfect addition to his collection.
Both treats look like versions of the Infinity Stones that Thanos was after.
The Shawarma Palace will bring a fan-favorite moment to life from the end of "The Avengers."
"In our fiction, they loved that shawarma so much, it became a tradition for them," said Pagan. "Naturally, when they crafted their Avengers Campus, they invited their friends from New York to open a second cart here so they and their fellow recruits could get shawarma whenever they want."
The cart has two shawarma offerings. The first is a chicken shawarma wrap called New York's Tastiest. The second, the Impossible Victory Falafel, is a plant-based option with Impossible falafels and a wrap made from crusted cauliflower.
Are there going to be any other rides featured in Avengers Campus? Yes!
At D23 2019, Chapek said the future ride will let fans board the Quinjet plane seen above. The ride is supposed to be part of a later phase of the park.
Last August, Chapek announced the second attraction will fly guests to Black Panther's home of Wakanda where they'll fight alongside the Avengers.
At the time, Chapek said guests would suit up alongside the Avengers in "an epic battle to save our world against one of the most powerful villains they've ever faced."
He didn't reveal who that villain will be. But knowing that a "Black Panther" sequel is coming in 2022, we're willing to bet it may be a villain from that film. The ever-expanding Avengers Campus is supposed to be flexible to grow with the ever-changing landscape of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Avengers Campus isn't something that will only exist at Disneyland's California Adventure.
Drake referred to this as the first interconnected attraction in Walt Disney Imagineering on a global scale as all of the campuses will be linked together in a global story.
After Avengers Campus opens in DCA, a second campus will open at a later time in Disneyland Paris. Avengers Campus will eventually have a presence in six different locations around the world at Disney Parks. The map above, which was on display at 2019's D23 Expo, showed the six different locations.
In addition to Disneyland Paris and DCA, there's a Stark Expo in Hong Kong Disneyland. The "Guardians of the Galaxy" ride that's underway at Orlando, Florida's Disney World resort is referred to as a Xandarian outpost. Another undisclosed location appears to be at sea.
Avengers Campus will open June 4, 2021, at Disney California Adventure.
Read the original article on Insider