×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Bob Iger, James Cameron Open Pandora: World of Avatar at Walt Disney World

Disney Chairman and CEO Bob Iger and “Avatar” director James Cameron opened Pandora: World of Avatar at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida on Wednesday.

“This is literally a dream has come true,” explained Cameron, who first conceived the world of Pandora in his sleep as a 19-year-old.

The park — the largest expansion in the history of Disney’s Animal Kingdom — was inspired by that dream and the 2009 blockbuster “Avatar.” It officially opens on May 27, but VIP guests were treated to a special dedication ceremony.

“At Disney we have a ‘how did they do that’ standard,” Iger boasted while standing in front of Pandora’s infamous floating mountains. “I can’t think of a better example of that than what we’re standing in front of right now.”

Iger thanked the imagineers who conceived and executive the project, as well as the man who created the world of “Avatar” — Cameron himself.

“”He does the impossible again and again and again, merging wonderful storytelling with mind-blowing technology to create experiences that no one has seen before. And ‘Avatar’ is definitely one of them,” Iger continued.

Among the attractions in the new expansion: a first person 3D ride called Avatar Flight of Passage, a gentler ride through a bio-luminescent forest called Na’vi River Journey, and the exotic environs of the Valley of Mo’ara.

“This is the kind of emotional experience that is not only part of the brand story for  our films, it’s a reminder of the stunning world created in James Cameron’s imagination — a world that will astonish and delight generations to come, both on screen and through immersive fan experiences like Pandora the World of Avatar.” said Stacey Snider, CEO and Chairman, 20th Century Fox Film.

Many of the “Avatar” cast — including Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, and Sigourney Weaver — joined Iger, Cameron and Snider for the celebration.
According to Iger, “Pandora is just as great in person as it is on screen.”

Check out the dedication ceremony here or above (jump to the 9:50 mark).

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • El Principe

    First Look: Trailer for Venice Critics' Week Prison Drama 'El Principe' (EXCLUSIVE)

    “How did you end up in here?” an older inmate asks Jaime, a young man who unexpectedly finds himself in prison. The answer: He killed his best friend. “El Principe” is Chilean director Sebastián Muñoz’s debut feature and has its world premiere in the Critics’ Week section at the Venice Film Festival. Set in Chile [...]

  • Leonardo Dicaprio Once Upon a Time

    Leonardo DiCaprio's Earth Alliance Commits $5 Million to Amazon Fires

    Earth Alliance, an environmental initiative backed by Leonardo DiCaprio, has committed $5 million toward the preservation of the Amazon rain forest following an alarming surge in wildfires. After launching Sunday, the organization’s emergency Amazon Forest Fund is working to support local partners and indigenous communities in their efforts to protect the sensitive habitats within the [...]

  • (from left) Luke Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson)

    Box Office: 'Hobbs & Shaw' Scores $102 Million Debut in China, Nears $600 Million Globally

    Universal’s “Hobbs & Shaw” returned to first place on the international box office charts, thanks to a massive $102 million debut in China. The “Fast & Furious” spinoff, starring Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham, collected another $120 million overseas, boosting its foreign tally to $441 million. “Hobbs & Shaw” is nearing the $600 million mark [...]

  • Angel Has Fallen

    Box Office: 'Angel Has Fallen' Rises to No. 1 With $21 Million Debut

    “Angel Has Fallen,” the third chapter in Lionsgate and Millenium’s action franchise starring Gerard Butler, had a stronger opening weekend than expected, collecting $21.25 million during its first three days of release. Those ticket sales were enough to top domestic box office charts, bumping last weekend’s champ, Universal’s comedy “Good Boys,” to second place. Starring [...]

  • Amanda

    ‘Amanda’ Takes Home Best Int’l Film at 15th Sanfic

    SANTIAGO, Chile    French director Mikhael Hers’ “Amanda” scooped up the Best Int’l Film award Saturday (Aug. 24) at the 15th Santiago Int’l Film Fest (Sanfic), which reported a 20% audience uptick in the past two years and continues to grow its reputation as the most vibrant and prominent film festival in Latin America’s Southern [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content