Disney has unveiled its newest prototype, a roller skating bunny.
Revealed for the first time at the South by Southwest tech festival, the robot is so new that it doesn’t even have a name yet.
But it does have a purpose.
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Tony Dohi and Morgan Pope, the Imagineers responsible for the robot, said it was their latest effort to make “robots that can have an emotional connection with our guests”.
This is when we meet the little bunny for the first time.
The robot drops head-first out of a box.
She’s the size of a little girl, but has big droopy ears like a rabbit, and is wearing roller skates.
On shaky legs, she manages to stand up and regain her balance.
With her first moves, it’s obvious she’s already formed an emotional connection with the audience.
She’s described as “dynamic and tough”, but her engineers wanted to test her true capability.
“Can we make an audience actually feel anxious for our little robot here if we ask her to premiere her big stunt in front of this huge crowd?” Tony Dohi said.
And with this, the little bunny robot does a front flip and bumps her head before recovering and finding her footing again.
She’s then picked up and propped onto her creator’s shoulders like a child.
The show garners a loud ‘aww’ from the crowd, so the answer to their question is a resounding yes.
You can watch it all unfold here, and skip to the 6:30-minute mark for the action:
Disney Parks Experiences and Products Chairman Josh D’Amaro said the roller skating bunny was very early in its development process “which makes me much much more nervous about showing it to you”.
“Over the years we’ve made tremendous breakthroughs with what these robots can do,” he said.
“The art and science of storytelling is the secret to how we amaze our guests and deliver memorable experiences.”
The Imagineers responsible for the little flipping bunny are also the brains behind an incredible robot that flies through the air at the Avengers Campus.