Disney Imagineering has just released video of “Stuntronics” — robots capable of performing death-defying stunts.
This is the future of animatronics.
Stuntronics are autonomous, self-correcting aerial performers that make on-the-go corrections to nail high-flying stunts every time. Basically robotic stuntpeople, hence the name.
The Stuntronics robot features on-board accelerometer and gyroscope arrays supported by laser range finding. In its current form, it’s humanoid, taking on the size and shape of a performer that could easily be imagined clothed in the costume of, say, one of The Incredibles, or someone on the Marvel roster. The bot is able to be slung from the end of a wire to fly through the air, controlling its pose, rotation and center of mass to not only land aerial tricks correctly but to do them on target while holding heroic poses in midair.
One use of this could be mid-show in an attraction. For relatively static shots, hero animatronics like the Shaman or new figures Imagineering is constantly working on could provide nuanced performances of face and figure. Then, a transition to a scene that requires dramatic, un-fettered action and boom, a Stuntronics double could fly across the space on its own, calculating trajectories and striking poses with its on-board hardware, hitting a target dead on every time. Queue re-set for the next audience.