The Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser is less than a week from debuting at Walt Disney World. When it opens, there will be lightsaber battles between Jedi and Sith, a dinner show, and roaming droids. If those sound familiar, it’s because they are some of the budget cut elements from Star Wars Land, aka Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.
The loudest argument against the Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser is simple – it costs too much. While Disney’s advertised price for the Galactic Starcruiser is just $6,000 for a family of four, that’s the starting price during a traditionally slow time of year. The price only goes up from there. There’s no doubt that Galactic Starcruiser appeals to the type of clientele that doesn’t give the nearby Pop Century Resort a second glance.
As good as the Starcruiser might be, Disney Parks fans couldn’t help but notice that some of the most exciting elements that were budget cut from Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge will now be found behind the $6,000 paywall known as the Galactic Starcruiser.
The Kalikori Club
Before we jump too far into what The Kalikori Club is, we’re going to discuss a who. More specifically, a female Twi’lek named Gaya. You may have heard her name pop up in Galactic Starcruiser coverage, and for good reason. In 2022, Gaya is the Twi’lek female singer in the Crown of Corellia Dining Room – the restaurant onboard the ship.
So, who was Gaya in 2015? Gaya was originally intended to be the owner of The Kalikori Club in Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. At The Kalikori Club, Gaya would’ve not only been the proprietor, but the performer – like she is in the Starcruiser.
The Kalikori Club was meant to be a converted bathhouse where there would be a cantina upstairs and a table-service dinner show on the lower level. Ultimately, that entire concept was budget cut down to just a cantina and no dinner show…unless you pay up. It’s hard not to see the direct comparisons between what was presented as being a part of Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge and what ended up in the Galactic Starcruiser.
The Kalikori Club is one of the best examples of an idea being cut from Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge and placed in the Galactic Starcruiser instead, but it’s not the only example.
Another example of Starcruiser getting what was promised for Galaxy’s Edge is the roaming droids on the ship. We have to look no further than the Disneyland website circa March 2019. As you can see in our tweet below, Disney had to upload a new version of the Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge concept art after it became clear that they wouldn’t be able to deliver on the promise.
Onboard the Galactic Starcruiser, a roaming droid makes its way around the lobby. Astromech droids really are a massive part of what makes something feel like Star Wars.
When the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular returned, we called live entertainment the pulse of Disney theme parks. Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge has no pulse, no live entertainment, and very little heart thanks to budget cuts. In this screenshot from a video released by Imagineering, we can even see the “Living Land” panel given a prominent spot on the wall behind John Williams.
When it was announced, Star Wars Land was to be a living, breathing environment where various spies and First Order adversaries would face off in their conquest, or defense, of the galaxy. In the concept art below, we can see that Kylo Ren and Rey would face off on the rooftops and elevated spaces throughout Batuu as the struggle for control of this outpost continued.
Indeed, even the earliest concept art showed this scene taking place.
Scott Trowbridge, the creative that Disney poached from Universal Creative following the success of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, said that Star Wars Land would have “action sequences in real-time with you right in the middle of it”.
When showing a clip of a stunt workshop that the Walt Disney Imagineering team put together, Wendy Anderson, Creative Director at Walt Disney Imagineering talked about “using rooftops and ladders” to bring the action to you. She went on to say that guests will feel like “they’re in the thick of it”. Undoubtedly, that’s not what the final product was.
However, if you pull out your wallet and pony up the $6,000 for two nights aboard the Galactic Starcruiser, you will indeed be “in the thick of it”.
Kylo Ren will board the ship and Rey will be there to face off against him – not unlike the concept art seen above of what was supposed to take place within the theme park land.
To say that Disney Parks fans are disappointed is an understatement. If there was any hope that Disney might bring some real entertainment to Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge, the Galactic Starcruiser should be the final nail in the coffin of promises.
As always, keep checking back with us here at BlogMickey.com as we continue to bring you the latest news, photos, and info from around the Disney Parks!