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Disney's 'Avatar' land opens in May, Star Wars land coming in 2019

LOS ANGELES - Eight years after James Cameron's "Avatar" hit theaters, fans will finally be able to enter the alien world of Pandora. Disney CEO Bob Iger announced during the company's first quarter earnings call that "Pandora - The World of Avat...

LOS ANGELES - Eight years after James Cameron's "Avatar" hit theaters, fans will finally be able to enter the alien world of Pandora. Disney CEO Bob Iger announced during the company's first quarter earnings call that "Pandora - The World of Avatar" will open on May 27 at Disney World's Animal Kingdom in Orlando.

Disney first announced in 2011 plans for a park , based off the hit sci-fi space epic Cameron wrote and directed in 2009. The film went on to earn big bucks at the box office -- becoming the highest-grossing film of all time -- and took home three of the nine Academy Awards it was nominated for.

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"This is a very big land with an extremely unique design and architecture because it does make you feel that you're in Pandora, the great world [James Cameron] created," Iger said. "To the extent that we can know this, we really believe in coming years that the interest in 'Avatar' is only going to grow."

Iger also noted that "Pandora" will help expand the Animal Kingdom park, which is not yet a full-day experience. This will be the biggest new land the entertainment giant will have opened in Florida since 2012.

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"The World of Avatar" will include a family-friendly water ride the "Na'vi River Journey," which will bring journeying guests through a bioluminescent rainforest, showcasing native fauna reminiscent of the film's glowing environment. The "Avatar Flight of Passage," similar to Disney's "Soarin'" ride, will be a motion simulator flight that allows guests to take a trip atop a Banshee over the world of Pandora. Visitors can also take a break for food at Satu'li Canteen, have a drink at Pongu Pongu, and shop at the gift shop Windtraders for Na'vi cultural items, toys, science kits, and more.

Iger also revealed on the call that Disneyland will soon see new attractions as well, with a new "Guardians of the Galaxy" ride debuting this summer and Star Wars Land set to open there at at Disney's Hollywood Studios in 2019.

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