I am groot! Walt Disney Imagineering has shared a closer look at their walking animatronic based on the popular Guardians of the Galaxy character.

  • Tech Crunch shared this closer look at the WDI Groot animatronic, which is a result of Imagineering’s Project Kiwi.
  • The objective of this project was to create character experiences with some of Disney’s smaller characters and create them to scale.
  • So, rather than a person in a costume or an anchored animatronic, WDI has created a walking robot that can take the shape of character’s like Groot.
  • Tech Crunch shared a video of the new animatronic in action:

  • R&D Imagineer Principal Scott LaValley is the lead on project Kiwi and came to WDI from Boston Dynamics after it was determined that they would need to build this robot from scratch.
  • The Kiwi platform contains “an enormous amount of custom robotics work,” according to Tech Crunch.
  • Tech Crunch also notes that Project Kiwi is still a work in progress and wouldn’t expect to see this walking animatronic in the parks any time soon.
  • This reveal comes after we got a very brief look at this walking Groot animatronic during the announcement of the opening of Avengers Campus at Disney California Adventure, which will be June 4.

What they’re saying:

  • R&D Imagineer Principal Scott LaValley: “Project KIWI started about three years ago to figure out how we can bring our smaller characters to life at their actual scale in authentic ways. It’s an exciting time for bipedal robotics and with an incredible team and our combination of technology, artistry, and magic, we are bringing characters to life that could not have happened anywhere but Disney.”