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Just a day after The Walt Disney Co. released a trailer for its latest “Star Wars” movie, Disneyland dropped a major hint of what might inhabit Star Wars land: Galaxy’s Edge in 2019.
An orange and white J4-K3 droid better known as “Jake” was seen roaming around Tomorrowland on Tuesday, Oct. 10, beeping, interacting and mingling with visitors in front of the Star Wars Launch Bay building at Disneyland.
Guests followed, took photos, and posed with the 3-foot droid that glided around like a Roomba, with some curious kids wondering aloud if a small person was inside the tiny bot..
It’s unclear whether Jake was autonomous or being manually operated. A young woman, who blended in with the crowd, was seen within 10 to 15 feet of the droid and could have been operating Jake using a smartphone.
This is the first time the Jake droid has been seen outside the Star Wars Launch Bay, where it was first introduced and tested about a year ago. The Jake droid was also part of the exhibit at the Disney Parks and Resorts pavilion at the D23 Expo – Disney’s biennial fan convention – this past summer.
This is the only week Jake will make random appearances at Disneyland, according to an official.
A Disneyland spokesman said Disney is testing the new technology to give Jake an opportunity to sense the world around it. Jake might not be a permanent attraction.
The much anticipated 14-acre Star Wars Land: Galaxy’s Edge is expected to open sometime in 2019 at Disneyland and Walt Disney World. The Star Wars-themed land is the largest themed expansion in the park’s 60-year history.
A Millennium Falcon simulator ride, which guests can pilot, and a second attraction that pits the First Order against the Resistance, will anchor Galaxy’s Edge, which is being built to resemble a landscape similar to that of the “Star Wars” films.
Disney officials have previously stated that Star Wars land will be an immersive and interactive experience for visitors and be filled with droids and other alien inhabitants.