On March 10, Disney Parks Chairman Josh D’Amaro took the stage at South by Southwest — a series of festivals celebrating everything from tech to music, film, education, and more. D’Amaro talked to an excited audience about how Walt Disney Imagineers bring together the art of storytelling with the most innovative tech science has to offer. Disney Imagineers are masters at taking iconic stories like Star Wars, pairing them with new technology, and doing things like creating an experience where Guests escape a Star Destroyer.
Now, Disney doesn’t have its best people go up on stage and simply talk about the work they have done. South by Southwest was no exception. During his presentation, D’Amaro invited Disney Imagineers on stage, where they showed off something truly incredible — a robot that can fall down, get back up, and even do a somersault!
A video of the robot’s abilities was shared by theme park reporter Scott Gustin.
Disney says the robot is designed to establish an emotional connection with the guest while attempting her stunt.
Disney says the robot is designed to establish an emotional connection with the guest while attempting her stunt. pic.twitter.com/zVnJH82meT
— Scott Gustin (@ScottGustin) March 10, 2023
Now, neither D’Amaro nor the Imagineers said exactly what the robot is, but a close look shows that it appears to be Judy Hopps, the main character in the hit 2016 film Zootopia. The Imagineers who designed the new — and incredibly impressive — Judy Hopps robot are the same Imagineers who designed the Spider-Man robot that swings through the sky above Avengers Campus at Disneyland Resort.
This incredible Jody Hopps robot will most likely be making its way to the Shanghai Disneyland Resort, where a Zootopia-themed land is currently under construction. Here’s what we know about the brand-new area:
Based on the Walt Disney Animation Studios’ hit animated movie, this exciting development will be the park’s eighth themed land and the first-ever “Zootopia”-themed land at any Disney park.
Guests will be invited to experience the mammalian metropolis of Zootopia “where anyone can be anything,” with a new major attraction that will seamlessly blend Disney storytelling and state-of-the-art technology to bring this fan-favorite movie and its characters to life – including Judy Hopps and Nick Wilde. Entertainment, merchandise, and food and beverage offerings will invite guests to fully immerse themselves in the Academy-Award-winning animated movie.
The stunning Judy Hopps robot was the only fun thing D’Amaro and Disney Imagineers shared with the audience. Guests also got a first look at an interactive Tinker Bell that can talk to Guests at the Parks in real-time. Although, we don’t know when she’ll be making her official Disney Parks debut. We also learned that The Incredible Hulk will be making his way to Disneyland Paris after spending time in Avenger’s Campus at Disney California Adventure Park.
The Walt Disney Company has had an incredible 100 years and with the technological progress they’re making, 100 more magical years are truly on the way.