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Disney unveils real-life lightsaber and it looks awesome

By Kara Santos Published May 05, 2021 11:55 am

Disney has done it. They’ve actually built "real" retractable lightsabers.

Walt Disney has finally given the first real look at their groundbreaking new lightsaber technology, which was previously teased back in April this year.

In honor of Star Wars Day on May the 4th, the company released a new teaser video showing off the lightsaber in action and boy, we really want one right now.

The new lightsaber doesn’t contain the usual plastic prop blades that have a light inside, but instead features a fully retractable light-up blade that extends from the hilt. 

Based on the cool video teaser below, the non-CGI light sword looks extremely close to the weapon we know and love from various Star Wars films over the years.

The new sabers will be part of Disney’s upcoming Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser immersive hotel, which promises to take the initial premise of its Galaxy’s Edge park and expand it to a Westworld-style interactive two-night Star Wars adventure. 

According to Jeremy Schoolfield, Managing Editor of Walt Disney World Resort Public Relations in the latest Disney Parks blog, the new type of lightsaber Rey wields in the video was developed by the Walt Disney Imagineering Research and Development team for use at the theme park.

Lucky guests at Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser will be the first to see the amazingly cool lightsaber in action—along with so much more—when it opens to the public in 2022.

“Watching that lightsaber activate right before your eyes will be just one of the countless ways that, from the moment you arrive to the moment you depart, you’ll be plunged into a Star Wars story where your decisions and actions—or even the casual conversations you may have—determine how your personal journey unfolds,” said Schoolfield.

While these lightsabers will most probably be used by actors around the theme park as realistic props, guests to the Galactic Starcruiser hotel experience will no doubt want to get their hands on one of these as a unique souvenir of their stay.

No details have been revealed regarding how much this new type of lightsaber would cost, but The Verge reports that Disney’s “regular” lightsabers already cost $200 each at Galaxy’s Edge, so any upgraded models with new technology will probably cost more than that.

While details on how this version works have not been officially revealed, Disney holds patents for lightsaber-related technology that describes a  "sword device with a retractable, internally illuminated blade."

Internet sleuths have surmised that the new blade works similar to a modified, motorized tape measure, which retracts and extends a sheet of plastic and LED lights to mimic the sword lighting up from the hilt. Tech new site CNET broke down the teaser video with technology journalist Bridget Carey explaining how the company likely pulled off the feat of engineering.

For those who may not have a chance to travel to Walt Disney Parks, the video also demonstrates how you can build your own lightsaber at home.

Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser at Walt Disney World Resort is set to transport fans to a galaxy far, far away starting in 2022.

(Images via Disney & Lucasfilm Ltd.)