The Marvel Cinematic Universe has grown into the most successful pop culture franchise running over the last twelve years. It's been an especially good trend for the Walt Disney Company, who purchased Marvel Studios back in 2009 and have made the MCU an integral part of the Disney family.
Disney+ will serve as the streaming home for at least a dozen already-confirmed series set within the MCU, six releasing in 2021 alone. Disney is also utilizing wildly popular MCU characters and locations in its theme parks all over the world as well.
California Adventure in Anaheim, CA will house an entire world called Avengers Campus, which is loosely based off the MCU and is currently being built. Previously, the Tower of Terror ride was re-imagined into "Guardians of the Galaxy - Mission: BREAKOUT!" with scenes directed by the MCU’s own James Gunn.
Another similar expansion is happening on the East Coast of the United States, with another top director from Marvel Studios reportedly working on its material.
In a new episode of The Disney Dish podcast, host Jim Him reports that Taika Waititi is filming new material for scenes in the "Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind" ride at Disney’s Epcot Resort.
"They haven’t filmed the film elements...There’s a lot of folks at Imagineering that are just thanking the lord that Taika Waititi is shooting Thor: Love and Thunder starting in January in Sydney."
The ride is set to release in either late 2021 or early 2022, and Waititi will apparently work on these scenes as he directs Thor: Love and Thunder for Marvel Studios.
"This is the first time Taika’s shot for a theme park ride."
WHAT THIS MEANS
"Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind" will be unlike anything at any of Disney’s theme parks. The roller coaster attraction will feature vehicles with 360-degree motion and reverse launch capabilities, which is vastly different from Mission - BREAKOUT! being a straight forward drop ride at California Adventure.
The one similarity between this ride and its Californian counterpart is that it will include scenes specifically to add to the experience, likely utilizing the stars of Guardians of the Galaxy again. Taika Waititi will already be hard at work on Thor: Love and Thunder while utilizing his talents with the world’s favorite “bunch of a-holes,” and these new scenes should help bring the MCU into a new interactive experience at Disney’s Epcot.
A full breakdown of the vehicle in the ride can be seen below:
Now the wait begins to find out exactly what kind of story will be explored in this one-of-a-kind ride upon its release. The California Adventure experience had the Guardians locked up as a part of the Collector’s exhibit on Knowhere, and it will be exciting to find out from where in MCU lore they find inspiration for this unique story.
This also raises questions of when this extra material will be filmed, especially with the entire Guardians rumored to be involved with Thor: Love and Thunder. Chris Pratt and Pom Klementieff are already confirmed as a part of the cast in Taika Waititi’s next MCU feature, so it's likely that the coaster footage will be filmed before or after they complete their production on the fourth Thor film.