Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run is an anchor attraction inside the new Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Florida. It combines immersive storytelling with interactive gameplay to make guests the protagonists of their own Star Wars adventures in a way never before undertaken by Disney Parks.
Lovingly described at various times as a “piece of junk” or “bucket of bolts,” the Millennium Falcon is the most famous of all Star Wars starships. On Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run, guests 38 inches or taller climb aboard the Falcon in all her ramshackle glory and settle into the cockpit to operate “the fastest hunk of junk in the galaxy.” They could just discover the ship has a few surprises left in her, because the Millennium Falcon may not look like much, but she’s got it where it counts.
Following the events of “Star Wars: The Last Jedi,” Chewbacca brought the Falcon to Black Spire Outpost for repairs at this spaceport on the edge of the galaxy. In exchange for some much-needed replacement parts, Chewie is loaning the Falcon to Hondo Ohnaka, a smuggler who is now making good use of the ship that made the Kessel Run in less than 12 parsecs. It is at this point guests enter the story of Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run.
Smuggler’s Run Queue
The queue for Smuggler’s Run is mostly indoors (unless the line gets super long). The queue is a series of ramps that lead up to the area where Hondo gives you his orders.
Do I need to know Star Wars to enjoy this ride? You do not need to be a big fan of Star Wars to enjoy this ride. This ride is a fun experience without any Star Wars knowledge at all. Disney does a great job of telling the story to you within the land and within the ride.
If you are a Star Wars fan, you will love and notice all the same details put into the ride and the queue. I am a newer fan of Star Wars but my husband which grew up being a fan fulfilled a childhood dream of flying the Millennium Falcon. He loved every detail and was constantly pointing things out to me that he noticed in the architecture. Lots of things that seemed unimportant were actually part of something bigger. Star Wars fans will get it.
Who Is Hondo and What Does He Want?
A fan-favorite miscreant from the “Star Wars: The Clone Wars” and “Star Wars Rebels” animated television series, Hondo is a Weequay pirate always looking for the next big score.
Hondo is running a “legitimate business” out of the spaceport, called Ohnaka Transport Solutions. When guests meet Hondo in Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run, he tells them he has more cargo than he can handle and needs extra flight crews to make some runs for him – especially crews that won’t ask too many questions about the cargo or how Hondo acquired it!
Step Aboard the Falcon
Once you accept Hondo’s offer, you enter the Falcon via an access hatch on the ship’s port airlock. Once aboard, you spend some time in the ship’s main hold and lounge, where they can sit at the famous Dejarik (chess) table or poke around at other equipment in the room. Since there is not a Photopass photographer most people offered to take pictures for each other. You don’t have much time in this room so usually, the picture is a quick one.
Role Descriptions on the Millennium Falcon
When it’s time for the mission to begin, guests strap themselves into the Falcon cockpit in groups of six. Each person is assigned one of three critical roles to complete their mission, and guests know it’s their turn to act when buttons light up in the cockpit:
Pilots (2) – Work together to steer the ship – the left pilot controls horizontal motion, the right pilot controls vertical motion – avoiding obstacles that could cause damage.
This is the most challenging role and probably the most exciting. While this is the most coveted role and I was able to partake in the pilot’s role, it is a lot of responsibility since the team is depending on you. I didn’t do a great job since it was my first ride and I feel as if I let my team down. Thankfully each role hs their own score.
Gunners (2) – Use blasters and missiles to defend the Falcon and its precious cargo (switching to manual targeting creates an even greater challenge!)
Flight Engineers (2) – Keep the Falcon from falling apart on its mission by managing the ship’s systems, repairing any damage the ship encounters and take control of the “special modifications” Hondo installed for these unusual missions
Smuggler’s Run Gameplay
Guests begin their adventure by powering up the Falcon and making the jump to lightspeed. From there, Hondo Ohnaka (with occasional input from Chewbacca) helps guide guests along in their mission.
If the Falcon sustains damage – such as smashing into obstacles or taking enemy fire – and is not properly repaired, the ship’s handling is affected.
At the end of the mission, Hondo informs guests how well they accomplished their objectives. If guests’ mission aboard the Falcon doesn’t go quite as planned, the ship’s hallways will show damage as they leave the attraction.
Once you come off of the ride you are a floor above from where you started if you were in a mobility device such as a wheelchair or ECV it will be there waiting for you and there is an elevator to go downstairs.
Millennium Falcon Details
- Walt Disney Imagineers worked with Lucasfilm to ensure authenticity in every detail of the Millennium Falcon – down to the hoses, pipes, switches and even the stickers on the exterior hull. Imagineers visited Pinewood Studios in the United Kingdom to study Falcon film sets and pored over archival Lucasfilm photographs of the ship.
- Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run marks the first time Hondo Ohnaka has been seen in any form other than an animated on-screen character. Walt Disney Imagineering consulted Hondo’s creator, Dave Filoni, in designing the smuggler’s physical look, ensuring the essence of his character was authentically captured in his Audio-Animatronics figure inside the attraction.
- Over time, the Millennium Falcon has undergone many modifications. For this mission, Hondo altered the control sticks for the pilot and co-pilot and supplemented the Falcon’s arsenal with a harpoon, among other tweaks.
Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run Fast Facts:
- Height Requirement: 38 inches
- Fastpass+: Not Yet
- Single Rider Line: Yes
- Plus-Size Friendliness: Very plus-size friendly, single seats with no armrests, large pullout seatbelts
- Photopass Opportunities: right in front of the Millennium Falcon there are 2 locations, along with a Magic Shot (with a Porg). There is another photographer near the entrance of Docking Bay 7 Food & Cargo.