Why Was Disney World’s Galaxy’s Edge Dead? Was It All Dorian’s Fault or Was There Another Force?

By now the news has spread throughout the galaxy: Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge crowds weren’t so bad when the land debuted at Hollywood Studios on August 29, 2019. Sure, there was a Category 5 hurricane brewing off the coast of central Florida at the time, but is Dorian really to blame for what could be seen as a low-performing opening?

Millennium Falcon at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge

There was indication early on that there might be a great disturbance in the Force when Disneyland opened its Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge back on May 31. Crowds weren’t nearly as large as Disney had been projecting, and subsequently it was reported that some Batuu cast members had their hours reduced. A fluke, maybe it was?

Citizens of Batuu are ready to welcome visitors to Black Spire Outpost in Disney’s Hollywood Studios!

But then it happened again.  Last month’s grand opening crowds at Hollywood Studios’ version of the Outer Rim territory didn’t live up to the hype. This has prompted us to ask: what in the name of Luke Skywalker is going on here?

Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge Dedication ceremony

Delayed Opening of Rise of The Resistance

Disney’s risky decision to open Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge ahead of schedule may have cost them dearly. Opening without the fully-completed land has left Star Wars fans with only one fully-operational new attraction:  Millennium Falcon: Smuggler’s Run.  The major headliner, Star Wars: Rise of the Resistance, isn’t going to be up and running until December 5, 2019, at Walt Disney World and January 17, 2020, at Disneyland.

Said to last an unprecedented 28 minutes, Rise is expected to be hugely popular. Perhaps Disney was gambling on folks coming for the initial grand opening of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge and then again when Rise of the Resistance opens for business. However it’s possible many are delaying their vacations to make only one trip to Black Spire Outpost this year and make it count.

Entrance to Rise of the Resistance– the attraction is rumored to have over 300 animatronics, 18 show areas and 5 ride systems!

Star Wars Fatigue

Another theory (and this one’s a bit painful, so bear with us, all you die-hard Rey and Chewie fans) is that the general public’s infatuation with all things Star Wars is slowly beginning to wane. When the original trilogy debuted in the late 70s and early 80s, there was a long break before we saw any new Star Wars-related content being created. Even when the prequel trilogy commenced in 2005, we saw another ten year gap before the Force awoke again.

Nowadays it seems like there’s another plot line being added to the Star Wars saga every year or so. In the past four years alone we’ve been given five new Star Wars movies including The Force Awakens, Rogue One, Solo, The Last Jedi, and The Rise of Skywalker (coming this December). Is this all just simply too much Star Wars in too little a span of time?

Inside the Millennium Falcon!

Managing Expectations

With Cars Land opening at Disney California Adventure Park and the debut of Pandora: The Land of Avatar at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Disney set a very high bar for new lands. These experiences were unlike anything we’d seen from Disney before. Radiator Springs Racers and Avatar Flight of Passage were revolutionary for their time, with brand new innovative ride systems and technology.

To boot, the theming and scenery of Cars Land and Pandora were completely immersive, incorporating natural elements with man-made materials (we still can’t tell which is which!). Did Disney set too high of a bar with these Lands and therefore make it more difficult for Black Spire Outpost to impress?

RADIATOR SPRINGS RACERS  (Paul Hiffmeyer/Disneyland Resort)

While we don’t mean to dwell so much on the Dark Side of things, both Black Spire Outposts have some hard times ahead of them to get back on track with Disney’s anticipated crowd projections.

And ultimately, the guest experience in the land is the truest measure of its success, and Disney reports the customer satisfaction surveys make Disneyland’s Batuu the Park’s most popular land. So while numbers are down overall, the lands certainly haven’t been a massive failure. When Rise opens in December, it’ll be interesting to see how Galaxy’s Edge performs.

What do you make of the numbers and crowds for Galaxy’s Edge? Have you visited Batuu? Let us know in the comments! 

 

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59 Replies to “Why Was Disney World’s Galaxy’s Edge Dead? Was It All Dorian’s Fault or Was There Another Force?”

  1. They messed up the new Star Wars movies. I skipped the second one entirely because the first new one was pretty lame. Additionally, WDW costs too much and is too crowded for most people. I will go next year when everything is open in the new land.

    1. The new movies had too much political commentary injected repeatedly into the first two of the sequel movies. The movies killed off and/or minimized the legacy characters, had several large plotholes, and probably the worst, undid the character arcs of major characters from the first two sequels. Disney did away with the old, thinking that “new fans” would pick up the slack. The older legacy fans are the ones with the money to drop at Disney, also introducing the next 1-2 generations to the content they grew up with.

      Unfortunately, the new “Star Wars” movies and theme park have little content to associate them with the Star Wars content and mythos of the original and prequel trilogy. Disney has clearly overplayed their hand.

  2. Was Dorian a factor? Yes.

    Kids went back to school? Disney oversold how crowded it would be? E Ticket ride not open yet? All factors, true.

    But I believe that the massive, possibly fatal flaw in their planning was centering GE around the current crop of movies rather than the original trilogy. Many people, including myself, were excited when they thought the new Star Wars land would be a place where we could go to live adventures with the characters we loved. Instead, we got the ‘they’re okay, I guess’ characters.

    Very few people love the new movies, but there are still lots of us who remember thrilling to all the now iconic moments in the original trilogy. “I am your father”, “I know”, “Do or do not. There is no try.” I can’t think of a single moment like those in the new movies. This is why the echoes of the first movies, like the Chewbacca meet and greet and R2D2 and CP3O in Star Tours, are still so popular.

    After the new ride opens, Galaxy’s Edge may find its footing. We’ll just have to wait and see.

  3. I abhor the “Star Wars Fatigue” argument. The problem is quality, not quantity. One needs only look across Disney divisions to Marvel, who targets three MCU releases per year, for proof that the fatigue argument is nonsense.

  4. A total bore. And hot as hell. One attraction…and the rest of the place is completely barren. The marketplace is tiny and that’s going to be a problem if the crowds ever do come. And I didn’t even know you were only allowed one visit to the land per visit to Disney. Is that even true??? Disney is losing it’s mojo. Where is the “plus” factor? Flight of Passage was the last of it, I guess. And there was supposed to be so much more to Pandora! But they ran out of money presumably. Remake after remake after remake. Somebody needs to take a long awaited “journey to imagination”.

  5. I just visited Batuu in Disney World. The experience was positive, however I think there are too many legacy rides in need of a make over… Just to keep it fresh…

  6. I wanted to love it, I really did. When I saw that Disneyland had record low summer attendance, we’re talking a crowd level of 1 or 2 max, I piled the teens in the car, and off we went. We are huge Star Wars fans, the original, the prequel, and the new movies too. But, and it’s a big but, although the land is beautiful, it lacks everything Star Wars. The only character seen in a three day stay was Chewie. No stormtroopers, no Luke, no Han, no Leia, no Ray or Finn or even Poe. Lots of big buildings, but nothing at all felt familiar or beloved. I could stay in Harry Potter World forever marveling at all the minute details from the books and movies, so so many details, from the buildings to the store fronts, from the butter beer to the meat pies, form the knit beanies to the robes, the castle, the candy store… your heart explodes with fandom happiness. But Bantu, nothing, nothing to make the heart putter pat. When I asked a salesperson if they had any Leia dolls or Rey dolls, they looked at me confused and went into roll playing that Bantu is real, not movies, like I was an embarrassment for even asking about the movie characters. Wanted to live it, but left feeling so disappointed. And the Millenium Falcon? The way the job assignments are handed out with job tickets, it quickly became apparent that a middle aged woman like myself was never going to get handed the pilot job, nope, stuck in the third row every time. Disney missed a magical opportunity with this one, sadly.

  7. The reasons im not there

    1) cost. Its effectively $500/day for my family to visit disney. It takes me 2.5 days to make $500 – and my bills arent going to stop just because im on vacation. Add in housing, food, transport, and merch – im saving for a year just to spend a week there.

    2) the reviews all say Galexys Edge is a mall. 1 ride (a 2nd in the works, but the reports are that rides facing budget cuts and wont impress). So, they want me to pay $500/day to come in and spend more? The activitys are spending money on a droid or spending money on a saber?

    3) the new trilogy isnt interesting. Last Jedi really ruined things, and the cartoons havent been spectacular. “Theyre for kids”, and my kids would rather watch Last Airbender, because “Resistance” is a poor series. Rebels was better.

    Disney; heres an idea. Listen to the fans who are left. Ditch Rey Poe Finn Rose Kylo. Give us Interesti g Characters (not politically correct diverse casts whose sole qualification is diversity). And put in rides. Make my kids want to be there. Quit with the blatant cash grabs, stop the short term snatch and consider that you’ll make more on a longer time line by giving the fans what they want.

  8. Could it be as simple as people expecting INSANE crowds and wanting to just stay away? Not to mention the opening coinciding with the start of school and the slow September season. Normal, run of the mill families that make a trip to Disney once a year or every few years aren’t going to shell out major $$ to potentially be around chaotic, masses of fanatic Disney/Star Wars fans. They’re gonna wait out the initial rush and enjoy it during their regularly planned family vacation… probably over Spring Break or Summer ‘20. Just my two cents without overanalyzing!

  9. All year long I had been following Galaxy’s Edge from the food to knowing what pieces of “scrap metal” I wanted. I finally was able to visit DW Galaxy’s Edge on Sept 5th and I was in awe. I do feel that because of the Dorian scare, because of school just starting, and possibly because Rise of Resistance isn’t open yet, the crowds were low (the crowds were low everywhere to be honest, it was nice haha). But I enjoyed the land a lot, I didn’t want to leave, and the finite details they put into it.. it made me cry a little

  10. We were there for opening week of the land and low attendance was mostly due to the hurricane. The airport was closed, people left in droves ahead of the hurricane arrival and every single park was more dead then I’ve ever seen. It was amazing:) no or short lines for everything.

  11. We’re local to Disney World, and I go often with my teen triplets. However, with the exception of the data pad in the Play Disney app, I find it kind of lacking something. I had read that people felt “transported to another planet.” The tunnel did nothing to inspire an otherworldly feel. I also expected interaction. Often, you see the Cast leaning on walls looking bored. I tried to interact with Rey once, never again. I figure I’ll join the First Order and show the storm troopers where she is next time.

    1. I agree about the tunnel. I remember as I walked through it for the first time, I was so excited and expected to be blown away as I entered the land. Nope- all I saw were a bunch of regular-looking trees and umbrellas. I didn’t feel “immersed” at all. Seeing Chewie and some stormtroopers walking around was cool, but other than that, I didn’t feel as though I was standing in a Star Wars planet.

  12. There are a good number of people who are not fans of the latest trilogy. Compound that with the new Star Wars land having very little to do with the original trilogy, which has the largest fan base and generally in the age demographic who can comfortably afford to vacation at Disney World, there is a significant lack of fan base who are not interested. It is not Star Wars fatigue (see MCU). It is lackluster films that fail to excite and get people to spend. Merchadise sales are also down for Star Wars. I loved Star Wars growing up, but the Last Jedi disappointed me, my wife, and both kids and we ended up going to Universal two times this year and passed on Disney World (which we generally visit once a year).

  13. My reason for not going is the fact that you are only allowed one visit to Galaxy’s Edge per visit to Disney. Even if you are there for several days. One four hour visit and thats it. Yo stay a week at the park you get one visit period. Plus the price increase compounds that into basically an insult to guests.

    1. We were there for a week and were able to go back more than once… perhaps it depends how busy it is? There was no problem even going to Olga’s Cantina. We did wait about 30 minutes since reservations were full but didn’t mind. I do wish there was more to do though. Won’t be paying to return again for the second ride.

    2. They were doing this at the beginning of the opening of Galaxy’s edge and it’s not like that anymore you can go in there and you can spend as much time as you want as many times as you want

    3. This is true only if the land is at capacity and the reservation system needs to be used. Crowds are so low that you don’t even need the reservation system. People can stay in Galaxys Edge for the whole day if they want and can come and go as they please.

  14. People enjoy Hagrids Motorbike Adventure more than Galaxy’s Edge and Hagrids had a year (at the most) of hype. I loved seeing theme park enthusiasts waiting all day, in the rain, in the heat, for something that was WORTH the wait. Disney can walk the walk, but right now Universal is winning (in terms of NEW attractions)

  15. In Carsland you visit Radiator Springs and the stoplight that blinks yellow.
    At Universal you visit the streets Harry and his classmates walked.
    You get to walk into the actual movies. That’s fun.
    Where is Batuu? What movie is that from? None.
    It’s like building an attraction around Seattle and making up a building called the Sky Point. Why do that?

    1. yeah i think trying to come up with an original idea turned around ot bite them. the falcon is the only familiar icon in the land. and the roleplaying cast members, that can turn people off. we had fun with it when one asked us if the symbols on our shirts (the incredibles logo) was a symbol many people on our planet followed. another cm tried to buy my daughter’s new droid. but i can see how it can really turn people off if they aren’t expecting it. but i’d prefer to visit tatooine mos eisley or naboo. not something not tied to the films at all.

  16. Two plus years in and Avatar still boasts 2+ hour lines day in and day out. There is another attraction but it pales badly in comparison.

    Looking at the Disney app almost daily the Millenium Falcon ride rarely hits an hour wait.

    Seven Dwarfs, Slinky Coaster and Test Track have longer lines day in and day out.

    I’m left with Star Wars is a bust and will limp forward while other attractions burst at the seams.

  17. Disney has mastered making dining and shopping “opportunities” (as they so gleefully announce) theme park attractions, and guests have been just eating it up. From popcorn buckets to spirit jersey, Disney can’t keep merchandise or strange good combo’s stocked.

    Galaxy’s Edge is no different. They made assumptions that this is what we wanted. What we got was land with beautiful detail, no doubt, but there’s just no kinetic energy in this land. It’s all static and just ….. there. Sure, look closely and you’ll be amazed and props to the designers, but with a restrictive budget … because you know, what does a Billion get you now days.. the artists and imagineers did what they could. But it was poorly planned and laid out.

    I love Star Wars, but this land? Not so much. I’d rather have Big Thunder Ranch and it’s BBQ. Especially with the holidays coming up.

  18. “What in the name of Luke Skywalker is going on here?” That’s just it, there isn’t any Skywalker in Galaxy’s Edge – no familiarity. They’ve themed the land for the “new generation” of Star Wars fans forgetting that it is the Original Trilogy fans who can actually afford to go there.

    1. This is I think is the main reason. And not only are the original trilogy fans the ones that can afford to visit, but they’re also the ones bringing kids to the parks. Alienating them is not a good idea. But It’s the same “for a new generation” mentality that’s poisoned the new movies (which of course ignores the fact that the original trilogy had a universal message that appealed to ALL generations).

  19. I grew up a Star Wars fan but would never have visited just for the land because it evokes no feelings of nostalgia. I ended up going because I had a trip planned to Epcot’s Food and Wine. I wanted to like it but there just was not much to do there. You walked around. There was a Kylo Ren helmet for $600. Hard pass. There were no R2D2 shirts or Leia mugs or anything else I could have gotten on board with. I actually wanted to buy something but couldn’t find anything remotely appealing. Even the Millennium Falcon ride was just ok. It was a one and done for me. I expected more in the queue as well. Nothing great there. Disney did a way better job with Avatar in Pandora. Flight of Passage is superior in every respect to the MF ride. And Pandora as a land is more enjoyable with much more going on there. Don’t get me started on the $13 hot dogs at Ronto Roasters. Seriously subpar. Ogas was a great one time experience but I would never go back. Too overpriced. All in all, it tried to be generic and embrace everything Star Wars and as a result ended up being nothing memorable.

  20. They forgot what makes a theme park fun. There’s a ride, there’s some food, there’s some shopping.

    Where are the games? If this is a smugglers Outpost, how is there not a guy in the corner letting you place a wager on some futuristic three card Monte?

    Why is there no shooting gallery along the lines of an updated frontierland? Or a light saber game where you try to protect yourself from a flying droid?

    Where are the actors in costume having a gun fight in the streets? Where’s the drama? The drones dressed up to look like droids zipping around the sky that makes a kid point and go “woah, mom!”

    Where’s the dang fun?

  21. The real reason, is because the ticket prices are too high. Disney and the other parks compete in their annual price hike wars. Hurts attendance. They might have finally hit the too high mark.

  22. I read a rumor on another site that the December 5th opening will be pushed back till next year. Apparently the ride is a mechanical nightmare. But Disney isn’t announcing it yet because they don’t want to scare off people booking tips during the holidays. That’s why I’m waiting till at least December before I book my trip there.

  23. I saw Galaxy Edge last week. I planned my trip in sept. the “slow season”. I was happy to experience Galaxy Edge but I feel it’s once and done. Nothing to do except walk around. It looks amazing but wish Hans and Luke were represented. Oga cantina was nice but outrageously expensive. $14 for a beer? $200 lightsaber? $100 droid? The land needed a full service restaurant reasonably priced.
    Not to mention annual passes price increase twice in one year. I guess Disney thinks everyone is wealthy.
    I enjoy Epcot, AK and MK.
    I think people are waiting. Thought it would be overly crowded.

  24. You totally missed the actual reason in your analysis – it’s the huge price increases that came along with Galaxy’s Edge.

    That – and in CA at least, the removal of Mickey’s Halloween Party to California Adventure outside of the main park.

    I understand they kept it in the main park in Florida, but my family is definitely not going to DLand this year in CA because of the Halloween Party shift and the price increases.

  25. I can tell you what the problem is! These attractions are basically really cool, but really expensive, themed shopping experiences. I can’t afford to go there one time and buy anything, forget going multiple times. $200 to make a light sabre and you don’t even get all the parts? Then they nickel and dime you for any cool extras! You can expect most families will plan for one big trip of a lifetime if they can afford it. There isn’t enough to do there to make it worth the money. Plus you get a bunch of new characters I don’t even know. They should have themed it with Luke, Han and Princess Leah areas as well.

  26. I think one factor is that they announced the opening date too last minute. Most people start booking their disney trips more than 6 months out these days. Coupled with the fact that prevailing knowledge was that it was opening late fall, and when they did announce, it was minus one major attraction, it doesnt surprise me.

  27. As Rizzo the Rat famously said: “Hey, I’m creating scarcity – drives the prices up.” Scarcity is what is lost from the Star Wars franchise (and from the animation franchise as well). Flooding the Studios with all things Star Wars for the last several years caused me to look forward to the new land for the sole purpose of getting Star Wars out of the way and giving me back Hollywood. Sure, rides will draw people into the land. But I don’t think I will ever get the feeling I had for Star Wars in the 1980s back again. I’m in no hurry to visit the land and don’t plan to stay long when I do.

  28. Disney also shot itself in the foot by raising annual pass prices right before it opened. The prices are exorbitant there and it needs an outside show. Once you’ve wandered around you’re done. Oga’s Cantina is popular but there needs to be more happening outside like a droid and human show.

  29. A few reasons. 1. The school year either just started or was about to start throughout the US. 2. With Food & Wine just around the corner, many guests already had their plans made. 3. Galaxy’s Edge opened sooner than most expected, another reason why guests already made plans for later in 2019. 4. Die-hard Star Wars fans are waiting for Rise of the Resistance to open- and will make plans to visit then

  30. I will certainly wait to see this new attraction during the off season. Nobody likes the ridiculous hours long lines and the oppressive Florida Summer heat. Its NOT Star Wars overdose as some state. I am looking forward to seeing the new lands at Walt Disney World but cannot deal with the crowds.

  31. It is the slow season. The few weeks after Labor Day are always slow. Between this and the other reasons listed all combines for lower attendance. On the other hand, Disney could only run the attraction as half capacity and have several hour lines like other theme parks…

  32. We are just going to have to admit it. For whatever reasons, (good, bad and ugly,) The Last Jedi has killed people’s love for Star Wars. Rian Johnson and the forces at Lucasfilm’s 2nd part to the new trilogy will ultimately cost Disney BILLIONS. I expect “The Rise of Skywalker” to vastly underperform expectations and the new Star Wars Hotel will be a huge failure as well. “Killing Han and Luke will be a very costly choice.

    1. I dont agree with this. Last Jedi was a dud, true. I know a ton of star wars fans and none have given up the franchise over one movie. Plus, Pandora was successful despite Avatar being a largely forgotten movie. There’s more at work here than star wars fatigue

      1. Avatar is still super popular. I know quite a few fans that gave up on Disney n won’t go near any of their new stuff. Lucasfilm insulting fans is also a factor too. I don’t think these are the only reasons, but they are factoring in as well. I hope Disney course corrects and fast or Star Wars will be dead

    2. Wrong. This is what angers me so much about Disney’s Star Wars films. It wasn’t “The Last Jedi” or Rian Johnson that were horrible for Star Wars. It was the piece of crap known as “The Force Awakens” which ruined everything. Aside from that, the other 3 Star Wars movies by Disney (including The Last Jedi) have been pretty good. But the direction that Jar Jar Abrahms, Kathleen Kennedy & Bob Iger decided to go with The Force Awakens was to make a new trilogy about younger, newer characters who nobody knew or cared about & at the same time try to plagiarize as much as possible from A New Hope, while simultaneously using as little creativity as possible. The Force Awakens should have never been made as a movie. It was absolutely awful. And Rian Johnson, who does circles around Abrahms when it comes to his storytelling and directorial quality, did everything in his power to un-screw everything that Abrahms ruined about Star Wars. While Johnson did a pretty good job (with a couple glaring exceptions), it was almost too big of a mountain for Johnson to climb. The new trilogy, as introduced by Jar Jar Abrams & Disney has dumb heroes & poor villains and it makes absolutely no sense how “the First Order” ever even got to its position of dominance after the Rebellion won the war against the Empire.

      Anyway, that’s me going all Star Wars geek, but I wish that we could just have Disney admit to its mistake, have them bring back George Lucas & let him tell us the actual story of the real Star Wars sequel trilogy that he had always envisioned, instead of using this fake Star Wars story to which we have been subjected so far.

      So with all of that said, this partially explains the problems with Galaxy’s Edge at Disneyland and Disney World. It’s called Star Wars Land, but it actually has nothing to do with the Star Wars that we all knew & loved. Just because you have the Millennium Falcon there and have a few Stormtroopers around doesn’t make it have anything to do with what people loved about Star Wars. We want to see Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Han Solo, Darth Vader, and the Emperor on occasion. And out of the entire galaxy that George Lucas had created, instead of making it someplace that actually appeared in any of the movies, Disney chose to make it into a place that wasn’t even part of the movies. If Star Wars Land had been a re-creation of the Jedi Temple, how awesome would that have been? Or, it could have been any number of actual places that were in the real Star Wars movies. But instead, Disney wanted to focus on its own new characters and ignore what made everyone love Star Wars so much in the first place. So, the big problem with Star Wars Land is that it’s not really Star Wars Land at all; it’s just a bastardized version of something that is somehow loosely affiliated with Star Wars. I read somewhere where somebody compared what Disney was doing with Galaxy’s Edge to what it would have been like for Universal to make their Harry Potter land about a different magic school other than Hogwarts. And that’s exactly what has happened here. Why would any Harry Potter fans want to go see a different school instead? It was just a boneheaded and tone-deaf decision by Disney to ignore actual Star Wars fans when they decided to expand Disneyland by adding a Star Wars-themed land but avoid anything to do with Star Wars.

      And the new ride, Rise of the Resistance (which I keep hearing rumors doesn’t even work as intended & will likely be further delayed) might be awesome, but once again, it’s something to do with the new trilogy and nothing to do with the old trilogies because it focuses on the nonsensical First Order instead of the Empire, or it focuses on the Resistance instead of the Rebellion.

      If Disney can give us an actual Star Wars Land, we will come.

    3. I agree 100%
      Before The Last Jedi many of my friends, family and I were super excited to visit Star Wars land here in CA but once the movie came out we realized how little Disney cared about the franchise. They just let Rian Johnson do whatever he wanted without making sure it made sense or was true to the Start Wars universe because they expected people to love it no matter what. That and the ridiculous AP price increases made it so we all (10+) let our passes expire and have no immediate plans to renew. Sucks because now we won’t have those great Disney days anymore, but honestly it’s not worth it.

    4. 100% agree. The political and social messaging in the new films is a priority over storytelling and character building. Does anyone really care about Ray, Finn, and Poe? They should have centered the park around the original trilogy because the new one stinks.

  33. I have my own theory about the initial low crowds…in Florida at least. If many non-locals like myself planned their vacations the same way I did, then they saw the vague timeframe of “fall 2019” that Disney originally gave and assumed that late fall or early winter would be a safe time to book a hotel room in order to coincide with Galaxy’s Edge opening. Then Disney surprised a lot of people by announcing an opening date that was significantly ahead of schedule, and I’m guessing most of them just decided to keep their original vacation plans, which could mean all the previously expected crowds will manifest later this year. I suspect Disney will have cause to resume its “extra, extra magic hours” benefit by the time December 5th rolls around.

    1. Yes, crowds are down, but does that mean it’s a failure? In Disney’s eyes, not likely. We won’t know until they release the quarterly reports from the Disney’s parks division, but if profits increase, then it will be considered a success. Remember the last quarterly reported stated that, while attendance was down, profits were up because of higher per-person spending due to higher ticket prices and other price increases.

      This is the new norm for Disney. They are targeting an audience that can afford to spend thousands for a week. Oga’s Cantina is still full of customers buying $14 beers. Hundreds of $200 lightsabers are leaving the park daily. Disney is a business, and the company’s leaders and shareholders are content with smaller crowds as long as profits continue to increase.