After being caught spying on Darth Vader’s latest Death Star plans, I was sentenced to eternal imprisonment frozen in carbonite. Maybe it didn’t go quite like that, but I did indeed step into a carbon freezing chamber at Walt Disney World, voluntarily, as part of the newest line of custom collectibles offered during Star Wars Weekends 2012, which began yesterday.
Disney calls the experience “Carbon Freeze Me,” enabling theme park guests to have their faces scanned and 3D-printed onto a small collectible figurine featuring their likeness sculpted onto Han Solo’s body, frozen in carbonite, a la “Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back.”
With the aid of my pal Kenny the Pirate, I recorded my trip into the Carbon Freeze Me experience at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, seen in the video below, including the variety of amusing faces I made while trying to act like I’d just been doomed by the Dark Lord of the Sith.
Video: Carbon Freeze Me experience at Star Wars Weekends 2012
UPDATE (7/5/12): My Carbon Freeze Me figure has arrived and it looks fantastic:
I also have posted photos and a full report here.
For the duration of Star Wars Weekends, which takes place every Friday, Saturday and Sunday through June 10, Carbon Freeze Me is setup inside the ABC Sound Studio, formerly home to Drew Carey’s “Sounds Dangerous” attraction. But for this new experience, Disney has decked out the stage to resemble the famous carbon freezing chamber from the second (or fifth?) “Star Wars” film.
Complete with dramatic shades of orange, blue, and red, winding ducts overhead, and plenty of fog, the ominous setup certainly sets the mood for being turned into Jabba’s next wall decoration. And Disney’s Cast Members were playing the part too, frequently referring to me as a “rebel spy” and asking what I “did” to receive my sentence.
In the end, the product that’s being created from Carbon Freeze Me is an 8-inch tall, highly-detailed Star Wars figurine, featuring Han Solo’s famous pose but with the 3D face of whoever takes part in the experience.
The actual “carbon freezing chamber” is a comfortable seat situated between a blue screen, several bright lights, and a small LCD monitor. After brief instruction and requiring me to pull my long hair back away from my face, a robotic voice counts down from 3 before my first 3D photo is snapped. Instead of smiling for the camera and saying “Cheeeeeeese,” the proper expression here is to wince in pain as the voice exclaims, “Freeeeeeeeeze.” Clever.