Published: June 2, 2009 at 11:21 PMGreat interview! This whole series has been. There is such incredible creative work going on at Thinkwell, Imagineering, BRC,... and it is fun to see them profiled and get their insights into the business.
Published: June 3, 2009 at 3:06 AMIt all comes down to one quote: Your interest wanes very quickly when your experience is based just on technology. It's gonna get old really, really fast. It's got to be based on a timeless experience.
Good old Marty Sklar (the soon-to-be retired international ambassador for Walt Disney Imagineering) couldn't have said it any better.
Kudos to Thinkwell Design. Those folks just get it. They really do.
Published: June 3, 2009 at 11:06 AMWell, I guess I now can spill the beans on "'Twilight' Snack: Vampire Attack!" a new 4D interactive attraction that the crew is working on. It's like a "bite-'em-up" thrill ride where visitors where virtual reality helmets fitted with mouth guards, which they use to try to "bite" as many teenage girls before their curfew.
Trouble is, though, some do-gooder, turn-coat vampire is trying to keep you away from the girls, so you have to fight him off with your handheld IR beam gun.
This will be replacing Stitch's Great Escape at the Magic Kingdom for the 40th anniversary in 2011. You heard it here first.
(And, yes, I am totally kidding.)
Published: June 3, 2009 at 2:04 PMSo does it mean that I'm a true theme park addict if I am reading this article while at a theme park?
Published: June 4, 2009 at 11:02 AMHey, *you* might not like "Twilight", but a very, very, VERY large part of the population LOVES it, and it just happens to be a demographic with plenty of disposable income that all sorts of industries would LOVE to connect with.
Don't discount "niche" or polarizing brands when it comes to theme park or "out-of-home" entertainment. The example I always point to is "Waterworld". One of the most critically lambasted films ever, parodied and ridiculed before, during, and after its theatrical release, considered a giant flop -- and yet it's one of the best stunt shows ever created.
One man's trash, as they say. Diamonds in the rough. :)
More importantly, we don't always have the choice in what brands or intellectual properties are used in themed entertainment -- often it's the brand holders who bring these ideas (and money) to be developed. If we *really* think that a brand doesn't have potential, we'll of course offer alternatives -- but this industry is also about keeping an open mind and seeing possibilities.
Published: June 4, 2009 at 1:12 PMYou folks are great. Thanks for the wonderful comments and the great piece on us!