Time FramePreview November 14, 2016 Official Opening November 20, 2016
Disney will officially debut a new holiday nighttime show on November 20th at Disney Springs that utilizes small unmanned drones with multi colored lights. The show is expected to run through January 8th. It will run three times nightly: 7:00 PM, 8:30 PM, 9:30 PM.
The show is called Starbright Holidays - An Intel Collaboration and features 300 small unmanned drones. The show will be performed multiple times nightly near Disney Springs' West Side.
November 16, 2016: The Disney Parks Blog shared a video of a preview of the show as well as additional details:
- The show is called "Starbright Holidays – An Intel Collaboration"
- It will feature 300 drones and be performed multiple times per night near Disney Springs' West Side
November 14, 2016: Orlando Attractions Magazine posted a preview video of the new show.
November 7, 2016: The Disney Parks Blog shared a teaser video of a new show coming to Disney Springs. The holiday show appears to feature the drone technology that Disney is rumored to also be considering for Epcot and Seven Seas Lagoon.
Last Week, Disney received permission from the United Starts Department of Transportation to operate small unmanned drones at Walt Disney World.
November 4, 2016: Disney filed a petition with the FAA on October 30, 2015 to operate small unmanned drones in a specific area (Walt Disney World). The petition has gained approval by the United States Department of Transportation as outlined in the following paragraph:
The FAA’s Flight Standards Service has reviewed your application to ensure compliance with the requirements of 14 CFR 107.200. The Administrator finds that the proposed sUAS operation can be conducted safely under the provisions of this Certificate of Waiver (Waiver) as listed below, because you have established adequate mitigations for risks involved with operating your sUAS in the manner you described. Walt Disney Parks and Resorts U.S., Inc.’s application details the specifics of the company’s risk mitigations based on their prior flight testing, technology, operational history, and flight experience with these unique sUA and specific operations. This data ensures that Walt Disney Parks and Resorts U.S., Inc.’s remote pilots in command and visual observers will always be able to see and scan the airspace encompassing the sUA operational area and assure safety of those not directly participating in the operation. Adherence to the provisions of this Waiver establishes the required level of safety within the national airspace system.
WDWMagic.com user marni1971 is reporting that this technology is expected to be used in the upcoming incarnation of Illuminations.
The assumption is that Disney will use these vehicles in conjunction with a patent filed on August 2, 2016 for "Projection assemblies for use with unmanned aerial vehicles".
August 2, 2016: Disney has filed a patent for "Projection assemblies for use with unmanned aerial vehicles".
January 15, 2016: On Episode 95 of the Unofficial Guide's Disney Dish Podcast with Jim Hill, Jim mentions that the drone technology has been tested for Epcot, but also potentially for the Seven Seas Lagoon. Len Testa also referenced that a replacement for Illuminations has been in development for over a year.
January 8, 2016: Dewayne Bevil of the Orlando Sentinel has reported that Disney has asked the FAA for permission to use drone technology they refer to as "Flixels".
January 1, 2016: On Episode 94 of The Unofficial Guide's Disney Dish with Jim Hill, Jim mentions that the drone technology originally rumored for Illuminations enhancements are now being considered for a new show on Seven Seas Lagoon that will be part of Disney World's 50th anniversary.