Who is winning the big game between Disney and Universal franchises?
Disney and Universal both dropped new trailers for some of their top franchises during the Super Bowl last night. Universal served another Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom trailer, while Disney promoted Avengers: Infinity War and teased Solo: A Star Wars Story before dropping a full trailer on its ABC network this morning.
Let's take a (or another) look:
Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom - Official Trailer #2:
Marvel Studios’ Avengers: Infinity War - Big Game Spot:
Solo: A Star Wars Story Official Teaser
Frankly, I don't know what to think about trailers anymore. For major studio franchises, they no longer have to serve as introductions to a film. They're now pretty just hype videos, especially the trailer for Infinity War, which just ought to be called
Marvel: All-Stars at this point.
Perhaps that fatigue with franchise hype videos is why I found the Solo trailer most compelling of the lot, as it actually did call back to that traditional function of trailers as an introduction to a new story, even if it does feature some very familiar characters and themes. But we are here to talk about theme parks, so let's consider that angle.
Each of these franchises is well represented in Disney and Universal theme parks (and with Marvel, across both!). We know what Disney is doing next with Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge. But Disney's only vaguely teased its plans for Marvel in California, and its Orlando plans are limited by Universal's rights to so many of Marvel's core characters. And it's been ages since Universal did anything fresh with Jurassic Park, as evidenced by the fact that its lands are still called "Jurassic Park" and not Jurassic World.
The development of theme park attractions almost always lags the movies, so perhaps the films can give us a better sense of the direction in which a company is taking the franchise than just watching theme parks can. So... what do you think about these trailers? And what do you think about the state of these franchises... in theaters, in theme parks, and beyond?
As someone who has never seen a Star Wars movie, it still has my vote. I saw Jurassic World in theatres, but I think the reason that movie did so well at the box office was because it was the 1st in a generation for a franchise that had only been through one previous cycle. It benefited from both nostalgia and curiosity in a way that subsequent releases will not. I'm not as optimistic on that franchise's future (relative to the others) and I think Universal is smart to play it a bit conservative with that franchise in their parks. My excitement for Marvel is just held back by the fact that I know there will never be a new world class theme park attraction built on the east coast.
How come there isn't a choice for 'Dark Universe'?
I think they're all getting pretty tired at this point. Last Jedi was a great stand alone movie but pretty off when taken in context of the saga. Jurassic Park went the wrong way long ago by ignoring what dinosaurs were really like and instead making them into ravaging monsters. I would have been far more interested in a Boba Fett film instead of recasting such an iconic character like Solo.
These films are getting to be like the Fast and Furious franchise... nice for fans but forgettable for a whole lot of audiences. I wish they would take a few years to build tension for Marvel and Star Wars films again, as they no longer feel like event films.
In the context of the movies, I'm most excited for Marvel. In my opinion, Phase Three has been the best of the MCU so far. I've enjoyed every film that has come out in the past couple years, and both Black Panther and Infinity War look great. Conversely, I've liked each of Disney's Star Wars films less than the previous one, and I just can't get excited about Solo. I'll still go see it, but The Last Jedi didn't inspire confidence that Disney will stick to what Star Wars should be.
While the ‘Dark Universe’ has repeatedly stumbled at the box office, it has the potential to KICK ASS as an immersive themed land that, wait for it, opens at dusk. Universal Creative knows it can be a real winner, but the repeated box office set backs have Comcast gun shy.
I voted Marvel. I enjoy both Star Wars and Jurassic Park/World, but both have had some missteps film-wise. The MCU has a pretty clean record so far.
I am excited about none of these. I am actually pretty tired of all of these franchises. I hope to see something original soon.
Marvel is still going strong 10 years in. Advance ticket sales put Black Panther to be one of their biggest grossershighest grossers.
Jurassic Park has limited attractions besides the water ride at Universal parks. They added a roller coaster at Japan. Orlando has the touring ride that doesn't always work. Maybe they should consider another huge ride, but the use of Dinosaurs in the Kong attraction removed the opportunity for more dinosaur rides.
I think it's hard to be excited for Marvel's future right now. Phase 3 is coming to a conclusion, and Kevin Fiege has stated that Infinity War Part 2 would be the end of the MCU as we've known it. Where Marvel goes beyond Phase 3 is a complete mystery. Certainly, they have a strong track record, but it's unclear what Marvel will do now that they have the X-Men and Fantastic 4 back under their control following the Disney acquisition of Fox, along with the completely unknown future for Spiderman, which is still under Sony/Columbia's control. I'm concerned that if Disney spends big bucks on theme park attractions based on the current MCU that by the time they are finished, the way those characters are portrayed on film may be completely different. Committing limited resources to overlay an existing attraction is no big deal, but spending hundreds of millions of dollars on a new attraction could ultimately lead to failure if Marvel pivots dramatically at the end of the current MCU.
Bravo, above poster person! The idea for a DARK UNIVERSE land or park, or one inspired by the classic Universal Monsters, sounds more fun than any of these film franchises have been lately. I know I'm showing my age, but it's gonna take a helluva performance to fill Harrison Ford's boots as Han or Indy. Good luck, kid. While we're at it, can we re-theme PANDORA: THE WORLD OF AVATAR to ANNIHILATION? Now THAT would be cool. It'd give HALLOWEEN HORROR NIGHTS a run for its money.
I actually like all these franchises.
If done right they will all three be able to do well, but Jurassic Park simply does not have enough room to go as far, and Universal (and other studios) are trying too hard to develop franchises. The point about the Dark Universe is an important one, but could be stated differently. Universal tried to make it an action movie, which was a huge mistake. At best, it should be a mid to low budget gothic horror, and Penny Dreadful was an example of how to be on the right track, but that is not really the way to go for a theme park. Universal could have given it to Guillermo del Toro. Disney did not make Star Wars or Marvel. They bought them. A franchise does not happen over night. I will say that Disney did the right thing by Marvel, and D.C. has completely blown their universe by poor management, and Warner Brothers via New Line blew Middle Earth by greed. The Hobbit could have come out immediately after the LOTR in a much different form, and we might not have to stream future Middle-Earth installments on an Amazon Prime App. I would be critical of Fox, but it seems that Disney now owns them too. The real big question will be Solo. There has been so much spin that industry insiders have been all over the place on their predictions. The fact is they did the same thing with Rogue One, and it was beyond excellent to me. The bottom line is Disney cannot allow it to be a letdown, and I hope it lives up to the advertisements from today.
For those doubting the power of the Jurassic Park/World franchise...
None of the above. Franchises are just another opportunity for tasteless MBA goons to rip off the idiot masses. Great stories have a beginning, middle and end. Franchises only end when the corporate drones run out of suckers willing to turn over their hard earned peanuts for the same recycled storylines, the same cardboard characters and the same worn out cliches.
I voted Jurassic World, mainly because I'm getting fatigued from all the Superhero movies.
Considering 1) Last Jedi was the best franchise film released this century and 2) Galaxy's Edge looks absolutely incredible, it's Star Wars in runaway fashion.
@evanweston - I would say that Thor: Ragnarock was a refreshing entry into the MCU, and early reviews have Black Panther as possibly the best Marvel film ever. However, my issue with Marvel is not that their films have been bad or in any sort of creative rut (they actually are hitting their stride even as they ramp up their releases). The issue is that they have no plan after 2019. Are they going to start integrating X-Men and Fantastic 4 into a 4th phase of the MCU now that Disney owns Fox? Will Disney finally cave and buy Spiderman from Sony/Columbia and integrate him into official Marvel Studios productions? Will all of the characters be rebooted after Infinity War Part 2? I think the MCU has been handled with expert levels of precision, but I'm concerned that Fiege and Disney have no idea what to do or how to build on what has become an established box office juggernaut.
I'd love to see a Jurassic World ride at Universal, with updated AAs -- although I still enjoy the existing ride.
@ Russell, I think Marvel does have a plan in place after 2019. Infinity War Pt. 2 ends Phase 3 & many of the original actors contracts are up.....but they have releases scheduled after 2019. Spider-Man has a sequel, James Gunn has spoken about Guardians 3 (post Infinity Pt2) Captain Marvel, Black Panther will have sequels, etc. There's even been a talk of a Black Widow solo film.
@184.108.40.206 - That's my point. There's a lot of uncertainty moving forward. Yes, Marvel has loose plans, but nothing concrete at the moment (no directors, no release slots, nothing). Feige wasn't even told about the Fox acquisition until after it happened, so now Marvel would probably have to re-calibrate any long term planning if they wanted to incorporate X-men and/or Fantastic 4 into the MCU. I didn't say they weren't planning beyond Phase 3, but those plans (just a little over a year away), aren't very concrete at the moment. This could perhaps cause a gap in releases as Marvel awaits a decision on the Fox acquisition or a final say from Disney as to what the expectations for Marvel studios will be beyond 2019. FWIW, multi-movie franchises typically plan and announce releases more than 2 years in advance (mostly because it takes a minimum of 15-18 months to take an effects-heavy movie from production to the theaters), so Marvel is getting up against it.
If I understand the question right it's what the parks do with the respective ip's (or could do). In that regard Jurassic Park is the winner theme wise. I love the whole setting and I love the boat ride (much better than the overly bumpy dino ride at AK imho). I think the meet and greet they added after World is a hit and a lot of fun.
Jurassic Park: The Ride= AWESOME
This article has been archived and is no longer accepting comments.