Aardman is out and Paramount is back in at the oft-delayed and seemingly ever-changing London Resort.
Now slated for a 2024 opening, the theme park resort planned on the Thames River east of London previously signed IP licensing deals with UK networks ITV and the BBC, which will continue. Paramount withdrew from the project in 2017 but now has returned, though it won't be adding its name to the entire resort, as it featured originally when it was the "London Paramount Entertainment Resort."
Along with the Paramount announcement, developers have said that their previously announced deal with Aardman, the British creators of Wallace and Gromit and Shaun the Sheep, will not be pursued. No word yet on which specific Paramount IP are planned to be featured in the resort, though new concept art teases Mission: Impossible.
The project originally was supposed to open this year — at least that was the plan the resort was announced back in 2012. Now developers are talking about a 2021 start for construction on the £1 billion first phase of the project, with an opening three years later.
The London Resort is planned for 535-acre site on the Swanscombe Peninsula in North Kent. The project is owned by the Kuwaiti European Holding Company Group.Tweet
Even the local businesses in Kent on the proposed Swanscombe Peninsula site for this development haven't bothered reacting to London Resort's latest IP deals since they feel no risk at all of being relocated for this. Irony in how this massive project was intended to be first "fast tracked" for UK and EU approvals that no longer matter thanks to Brexit, which didn't exist then.
Guess that means we can expect a Lake Tahoe-themed boat ride as well.
I can't wait for the "Throw a Pizza On the Roof" carnival game!
I do wonder how likely it is that this project will actually go ahead. I know it's not a quick process to build a theme park, but this hasn't even got to the building stage. Add that to the uncertainty caused by brexit and I don't think the investors are as confident in this project as they once were.
We've been promised something on the scale of Universal, but I wouldn't be surprised if we get something a lot less grand and immersive, more of a mismatched collection of rides than well thought out and consistently themed areas.
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Given this project's history, forgive me for suggesting that an IP deal with Sony Pictures Television to allow a Breaking Bad-themed A1A Car Wash might be the most appropriate attraction for this park.