The Marvel Cinematic Universe is bigger than ever these days, with a slew of popular and successful movies such as this past weekend's Captain America: Civil War, and a number of hit TV shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Daredevil. Marvel's parent company Disney now has plans to make this universe even bigger, by bringing one of the MCU's most popular movies, Guardians of the Galaxy, to Disney's California Adventure theme park. A new report claims that the company is planning on replacing The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror ride with a Guardians of the Galaxy ride.
While Disney hasn't officially announced these plans, the Disney blog Micechat has confirmed earlier rumors are true, that Guardians is replacing Tower of Terror in California Adventure. This latest report claims that the entire Twilight Zone back story of the ride will be replaced by a Guardians of the Galaxy story, centering on The Collector, who was played by Benicio del Toro in the 2014 blockbuster. If this all pans out, this new attraction could be opened in time for the premiere of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, which is currently in production and slated for release on May 5, 2017.
Reportedly, the Tower of Terror ride will close this fall, with the building getting a complete refurbishment, inside and out. The plan is to have the ride open in conjunction with the Guardians 2 movie premiere, which will be held at Disney's California Adventure the same week the ride opens. The project is expected to get an official green light by August, with this report claiming the only thing that may derail it is a "disastrous" opening for the company's new resort in Shanghai this summer.
It's worth noting that Disney is developing a Tower of Terror movie, with screenwriter John August providing a script treatment that will later be turned into a feature-length screenplay. The attraction is set at the fictional Hollywood Tower Hotel, where visitors step inside an elevator to hear stories about several people who went missing before being dropped from several stories above. The movie will follow five strangers at a posh hotel, who all disappear when the hotel is struck by lightning. While it may seem weird that Disney is getting rid of an attraction that they are about to base a movie on, Disneyland got rid of their Country Bear Jamboree attraction before The Country Bears movie opened in 2002.
This new Guardians ride will be part of a multi-year plan aimed at getting more Marvel-themed attractions into Disney's California Adventure, headed up by new Disney Parks chairman Bob Chapek. The chairman was reportedly "shocked" that the resort hadn't opened any Marvel-themed attractions since Disney acquired Marvel Studios back in 2009. They are planning to move the "Marvel mega-coaster" from its current Califronia Adventure location in the Timon parking lot and fit it into the theme park's Hollywood erea, where Stage 17, Monsters Inc. and the unused Stage 12 buildings are. This saves the Timon parking lot area for future park expansion, and it will serve to better use the under-developed area on the opposite side of Hollywood Land.
This Guardians of the Galaxy ride hasn't been made official yet, and it isn't known if Guardians of the Galaxy and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 writer-director James Gunn will have any involvement in the creative development of this attraction. It also isn't known what other plans Disney may have for future Marvel-themed park attractions, but we'll be sure to keep you posted as soon as new developments arise. Stay tuned for confirmation on the Guardians of the Galaxy ride at Disney's California Adventure.