Looking back: I still remember my first trip to Disneyland as a child. There were so many Amazing things that made you wonder, "How did they do that?" The animatronics were particularly awe-inspiring for a 7-year-old, but on subsequent visits, they seemed — well, robotic. If early testing is anything to go by, the park's newest automaton puts the rest to shame.
Disney engineers (aka Imagineers) have developed an animatronic Spider-Man that will be flying over Disney California Adventure Park soon. DisneyParks announced that the mechanical superhero would debut this summer along with the grand opening of Avengers Campus. It will be performing Spectacular acrobatic flips and classic Spider-Man midair poses over the buildings of the new plaza.
The teaser video, captured at a "top-secret location" (above), gives a small taste of what to expect. However, the behind-the-scenes testing video (below) hammers home how Amazing the Spider-Man animatron will be when it swings into action.
After being flung from a cable, the life-sized robot executes picture-perfect Spider-Man poses in midair. Even a seasoned stunt man would have a hard time pulling off such graceful tricks without quite a bit of practice. Imagineers were able to get the endoskeleton perfectly balanced and articulated so that it does not over-rotate or look clumsy. It is a real engineering Marvel.
Even as an adult, walking in and seeing this would bring back the same feelings of awe and wonder I had on my very first trip to the park. Although I will probably not get a chance to go back, I can't wait to see video of the Spectacular Spider-Man in full costume above the crowds at Avenger Campus.