Disney’s Million-Dollar Animatronic Removed From Attraction

in Walt Disney World

na'vi river journey animatronic

Credit: Inside the Magic

One of Disney’s most impressive theme park additions has gone missing, leaving Guests with a lackluster experience.

Pandora World of Avatar at Animal Kingdom
Credit: Disney

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When Pandora – The World of Avatar opened at Disney’s Animal Kingdom in 2017, the Walt Disney World Resort changed forever.

This area is by far Disney’s most ambitious and immersive land to date, featuring a jaw-dropping amount of detail and theming around every corner. Of course, Guests were confused at first when Disney revealed it would be building a new land centered on James Cameron’s Avatar franchise.

Obviously, the first film was a worldwide phenomenon, but many doubted Disney’s decision to anchor an entire theme park destination around this franchise.

Fast forward to today and it’s easy to see that Disney made the right decision.

Disney Imagineer Joe Rohde and Director James Cameron examining a model of Pandora – The World of Avatar
Credit: Disney

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The land features two rides, Na’vi River Journey and Avatar Flight of Passage, as well as a shopping location and dining location. In an exciting move, Disney CEO Bob Iger revealed plans to bring Avatar to the West Coast, sharing that Disney is working on new experiences for the Disneyland Resort.

While Avatar Flight of Passage is the big “E-Ticket” attraction of the land, Na’vi River Journey is a relaxing way to explore the land.

This slow-moving boat ride features one of Disney’s most impressive (and expensive) audio-animatronic figures to date, which greets Guests toward the end of the ride.

navi river journey
Credit: ITM

The animatronic Na’vi Shaman reportedly cost Disney around $23 million, an impressive number even for a company known for its large budgets.

Unfortunately, as shown in the video below, this figure has been removed from the ride:

As you can see, a giant screen has replaced the Na’vi figure at the end of the ride. This occasionally happens whenever the figure needs maintenance, as Disney not wanting to completely spoil the attraction for Guests.

However, it is incredibly disappointing for the main draw of the ride to be missing. Hopefully, Disney can quickly address whatever the issue is and get the animatronic working again!

Animal Kingdom is famous for its collection of animatronics. Whether you’re swinging past the Yeti on Expedition Everest or traveling through time on DINOSAUR, this theme park has an amazing array of Disney animatronics to discover.

Do you enjoy Pandora – The World of Avatar? What’s your favorite ride at Disney’s Animal Kingdom?

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