The first contemporary Star Wars on Earth jet has been rolled out. ANA (All Nippon Airways) of Japan’s newest Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner came out of the paint shop in Everett, Washington, sporting a fun R2-D2 look.
The Dreamliner is the first of three planes to be decorated with Star Wars characters as part of an agreement between ANA and The Walt Disney Company. The R2-D2 design was unveiled to Star Wars fans at the Star Wars Celebration in Anaheim, California earlier this year. Today marks the first time a Star Wars character appears on the exterior of an actual commercial aircraft.
On October 18, the R2-D2 ANA Jet is scheduled to go into service on international routes, initially as flight NH116 between Tokyo and Vancouver, and then fly between Japan and other cities including the US (Seattle and San Jose), Europe (Munich, Paris and Brussels), Australia (Sydney), China (Beijing) and Indonesia (Jakarta). The R2-D2 motif is imprinted onto the cockpit and front half of the jet’s main fuselage, while the Star Wars logo spans the length behind the wings.
The interior of the 215-seat passenger plane will feature themed in-flight decorations, such as headrest covers, paper napkins and cups, and passengers will be able to enjoy all six of the currently released Star Wars films as part of ANA’s extensive in-flight entertainment options. This will be the first time that any of the Star Wars movies have been included as part of an in-flight entertainment system.
Two additional planes will follow. One will be a Boeing 767-300 decorated with BB-8, a brand new character from Star Wars: The Force Awakens. A second R2-D2 Boeing 777-300ER is planned to go airborne in March 2016.
Featured image: The first R2-D2 jet of modern times – a Star on Earth (Image © ANA)