The iconic Green Army Men just got a major update — and an influx of new recruits.
At the new Toy Story Land, which opens June 30 at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Orlando, the two-inch tall “men” come to full-size life and interact with guests. And for the first time, the troops will include women.
“This is important to all of us — it’s the right thing,” says Toy Story Land’s show director of live entertainment, Tom Vazzana.
Visitors to the new land, which is inspired by the blockbuster Pixar films, can take part in the Green Army Patrol, a parade that features games like “Sarge Says.”
“We set up a boot camp,” says Vazzana. “We invite anyone who wants to play with us to become a Green Army soldier. They take an oath and have a series of really funny exercises.”
There’s another change to the troops: “soldiers” are now free of the mesh face covers worn by previous performers at the theme park.
“Now everyone’s able to talk and interact,” says Vazzana. And the land’s three stars — Woody, Buzz and Jessie — are free to roam in ways characters at the other Walt Disney World parks are not.
“They’re not hidden away in rooms,” says Vazzana. “They’re alive. I’m thrilled about that accessibility.”