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Sun 14 Sep 2014 12:17 PM

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Alwaleed-backed Disneyland Paris said to be planning Star Wars attraction

French theme park will celebrate its 25th anniversary in 2017, which will also be the 40th anniversary of the first movie

Alwaleed-backed Disneyland Paris said to be planning Star Wars attraction
Disneyland Paris

Disneyland Paris, the theme park which is part-owned by Saudi billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal Al Saud, is planning to celebrate its 25th anniversary in 2017 with the opening of a new attraction based on the Star Wars series of films.

“We are looking at updating Star Tours at the moment..... We want to do some special stuff for the 25th anniversary as well,” Björn Heerwagen, show design and production manager at Euro Disney and head of the department which develops the rides and attractions at the park, was quoted as saying by Forbes.

The move comes after Disney’s $4 billion purchase of Lucasfilm in 2012 and its aim to further develop the Star Wars movie brand, with the seventh instalment in the film franchise already underway, part of which was filmed in Abu Dhabi earlier this year. While 2017 will be the theme park's 25th anniversary it will also be the 40th anniversary of the first Star Wars movie.

The Paris-based theme park, which is 38.9 percent owned by the Walt Disney Company, was rescued from bankruptcy in 1994 when Prince Alwaleed injected $350m into its parent company Euro Disney.

In a bid to attract more visitors from the Gulf region, Disneyland Paris announced in February it had struck a deal with Qatar’s Regency Travel & Tours.

“There is a huge demand for Disneyland Paris from this part of the world,” Regency Travel & Tours CEO Tareq Abdullatif Taha was quoted as saying by Gulf Times.