Walt Disney World has announced that Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind at EPCOT is getting Christmas music! Here’s what we know so far, plus speculation about whether Walt Disney World tries to run both versions, what the overlay entails, if the virtual queue ends by then, and more.
This announcement occurred as part of the Disney Parks “Halfway to the Holidays” celebration featuring special announcements, recipes for delicious dishes from the parks, and a live tweeting of a Santa Clause virtual watch party coming tonight.
Earlier this morning, we shared that Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party is Coming Back for 2022! Now, we have news about the EPCOT International Festival of the Holidays, which will include a ride overlay for the park’s brand new Marvel roller coaster.
Literally the only thing we know so far is this line in Walt Disney World’s press release that stated the following:
“This season, the Guardians will trade in their classic hits playlist for a mash-up of seasonal jams at Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind at EPCOT. Guests will blast off to the tune of an awesome holiday single, bringing joy to Xandar and Terra, too.”
It’s possible this is just new music, but it’s also possible that this is a tie-in with “Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special,” slated for Disney+ during the 2022 holiday season, which is written and directed by James Gunn.
In that case, the Christmas overlay to the Marvel-ous roller coaster might be something more substantial–especially if footage and dialogue for the Holiday Special were recorded simultaneous with Cosmic Rewind.
Here’s the current, non-Christmas “Awesome Mix” playlist for Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind, consisting of six songs in their classic versions:
- “September” by Earth, Wind & Fire
- “Disco Inferno” by The Trammps
- “Conga” by Gloria Estefan
- “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” by Tears for Fears
- “I Ran” by A Flock of Seagulls
- “One Way or Another” by Blondie
While we don’t want to over-analyze a few sentences, it sounds like the Christmas overlay will only feature one single song.
It’s a bit confusing because the press release says it’ll be feature “seasonal jams” (plural) but right before that says it’ll be a mash-up. After that, it indicates the tune will be an “awesome holiday single” (singular, obviously).
It would make sense for the overlay to only have one track that’s a medley of holiday music. Or, and hear me out, maybe it should be a medley of everyone’s favorite holiday jam: “Wonderful Christmastime,” but performed by different artists and in different languages. 😉
This would also be consistent with past precedent for other Guardians of the Galaxy seasonal ride overlays. That’s right, Guardians of the Galaxy: Christmas Rewind (not its official name to our knowledge) is not the first Marvel attraction to get the holiday treatment.
Over at Disney California Adventure, Mission Breakout becomes “Guardians of the Galaxy – Monsters After Dark” during the fall.
This holiday overlay runs simultaneous with Mission Breakout–there’s a switchover that occurs each evening during the Halloween season.
Starting at 5 pm, guests can experience Monsters After Dark, which is a sequel to the daytime version, Mission Breakout. It’s a lot of fun, and gives the tower same-day re-rideability (which it already had thanks to multiple different songs, just like Cosmic Rewind).
This should also address any concerns about Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind closing for refurbishment to “install” the overlay. It absolutely will not.
Even though Walt Disney World has not confirmed this, we are 99.999% confident there will be zero downtime for the changeover. There are no physical scenes or props to change–everything with this overlay can be accomplished with the flip of a switch, so to speak, via a computer.
We mention this midday switchover between the attractions at DCA because it’s entirely possible the same could occur with Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind at EPCOT. In fact, that might be the preferred approach for the more tourist-centric Florida park.
Walt Disney World has long been averse to ride overlays of popular attractions, which is famously the justification/excuse for Magic Kingdom not transforming Haunted Mansion into the Nightmare Before Christmas inspired overlay, Haunted Mansion Holiday. (The longstanding rumor is that the overlay was even fabricated for Walt Disney World, but shipped off to Tokyo Disneyland because Florida management opted against it.)
With that said, running both Cosmic Rewind and Christmas Rewind (again, not the official name) would likely require eliminating the virtual queue for the new EPCOT attraction. Otherwise, Guest Relations would have to deal with countless complaints about people not seeing the “version” of the ride they wanted.
The good is the end of the virtual queue might not be that far away. EPCOT has been shockingly bearable post-opening of Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind with manageable crowds and wait times. The 1 pm virtual queue for Cosmic Rewind has stayed open for almost a full hour many days, making it incredibly easy to join (and an actual guest benefit rather than a liability!). If this trend continues, it’s likely that the virtual queue will be open past Park Hopping time by mid-August 2022 once schools go back into session and the off-season arrives in full force!
Ultimately, that’s just some fun (?) speculation about what this holiday overlay for Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind might entail. More than anything else, we’re happy to see Walt Disney World embrace overlays to an increasing degree. We’ve long said that WDW’s demo is evolving thanks to more DVC members and a growing Central Florida population, so past excuses to avoid these don’t really hold water anymore.
Even though it’s still brand new, we’re thrilled that Cosmic Rewind is the next ride to get the Christmas overlay treatment. We’re really curious to learn more about Guardians of the Galaxy: Christmas Rewind (or whatever it ends up being called), whether Walt Disney World tries to juggle both versions, what the overlay entails, if the virtual queue ends by then, and more. We will update this post accordingly as soon as we learn more. Stay tuned!
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