Let's play armchair Imagineer. Disney will be looking to see recovery in the global travel industry before it commits to any new expansion plans. But when Disney decides that it is ready to start designing new attractions again, it will have plenty of IP to theme it.
Thanks to Bob Iger's spending spree, Disney owns a ton of intellectual property for its Disney+ and Hulu streaming services, much of which has zero presence in Disney's theme parks. Most never will sniff the inside of a theme park, but Fox brought some interesting animation franchises to the table that could add something fresh to the Disney parks.
Of the animation franchises below, I have no idea which ones Disney might now own or control theme park development rights. So it's possible that Disney could not develop attractions based upon these franchises, even if it wanted to. Remember, Fox's biggest animation franchise is The Simpsons, and those rights are locked away to Universal in the United States.
Among Fox's animated movies, Ice Age and Rio are enduring franchises, for which Fox has developed theme park attractions outside the United States. Titan AE and Anastasia might be ancient history for many consumers, but both have their fans and some potential for exploring in a theme park environment.
But it's the TV shows that get my mind spinning when I think about how they might fit in the parks. Who wants lunch at Bob's Burgers? Or to spend some time with the family from Family Guy? A Futurama land could be amazing. But if I had to pick just one, I would love to experience an immersive theme park attraction based upon Archer. Yeah, that would never fit well in a kid-friendly environment, but a fan can dream, right?
Let's hear your armchair Imagineering concepts, in the comments.
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To my mind Ice Age is the obvious IP here. It’s the most ‘Disney-esque’ and it’s a great series of films with memorable (and cute) characters and loads of humour.
I think plenty of these IPs are great, but very few hit the right level of "family friendly" that most Disney attractions aim for. I think Ice Age is without a doubt the best Fox animated franchise that hasn't been leveraged in the parks.
I think Anastasia has a serious cult fandom which really crosses over with the Disney fan crowd. Also the musical was pretty well regarded. I think a stage show like the Frozen musicals from DCA would be a great fit for Hollywood Studios.
I'd love to see a Night at the Museum attraction similar to Mystic Manor with Haunted Mansion vibes. Go through the museum at night and all of the props and figures come to life, or maybe an attraction similar to Monsters Inc Hide and Seek.
I agree with @David Brown, Ice Age is the most Disney kind of property and I'm sure many people out there believe that Disney actually made those movies.
Dinoland USA re-skin to Ice Age? It has dinosaurs in it, for some reason.
Also, a slightly more mature fifth gate in Florida, based around Fox properties, might be worth considering. Universal is always seen as the more "mature" option for theme park goers in the Orlando area. A 20th Century studios park might be the answer to compete with the big globe down the road.
I'd personally rather see more presence of Pixar in the parks. WALL-E, Up, inside out, Soul, great properties which could be timeless attractions
While I'm okay with the Marvel brand mixing into Disney World, I think most of those other animated franchises can only dilute the Disney brand. Give me a Fantasia dark ride/art experience that ends with a Night on Bald Mountain.
A follower on Twitter suggested an Archer bar in Disney Springs, and I endorse this idea if only to see how much Disney would charge for a plate of Eggs Woodhouse.
My favorite Fox animated film is a rather forgotten one, but that would be Robots. Perfect for Epcot maybe.
Honestly Robert, I’ve long said that Bob’s Burgers would do decent business as a quick service restaurant at Disney Springs. Then I’d be down with calling that a theme park.
As much as I like(d) Futurama and Family Guy, I wouldn’t be excited to see any of the above choices added to a Disney, or any other, park.
Ignoring the fact that none of these are close to the top of the list for what IPs I’d choose to add, I went with Rio. Ice Age is probably the easiest one to add, but I never really enjoyed the movies for some reason and they don’t seem that great, even though I was the target audience for the earliest ones. Rio, on the other hand, I enjoyed more, and I think it lends itself better to an attraction, especially in Animal Kingdom. Whether that means a re-skin of something like Bugs Life or that awful Up bird show, I think the message translates well and has potential
there are 2 questions at play here... what do we want... and what is the best fit?
I want Futurama, becasue, well I love Futurama.
Is it a good fit? No.
Rio or Ice Age are probably the best fit in that they are popular enough (a few sequels) so they clearly have an audience. They are at least Family friendly (unlike Futurama :( )
When people visit a Disney park, they want to see Disney. Fox properties are not Disney, and the only reason I'd ever want to see one in a Disney park would be if it was an IP completely unlike anything in Disney's library and it was a perfect fit for a minor attraction somewhere at the resort. Anything that doesn't satisfy both of those criteria would be a worthless investment IMO.
Ice Age at Animal Kingdom! Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs and Ice Age: Continental Drift are two of the highest grossing CGI animation films of all time. The five films have grossed over $3.2bn! Lovable/likeable/distinctive characters, great for merchandising and further spin-off programmes/series. Replace Dinoland with Ice Age for the kids.
Rides and attractions around Crash & Eddie, Sid and Scrat plus an Ice Age show and they surely have a winner. Hurry up Disney!
Unfortunately I couldn't vote for any of these (edit: ok the Bob's Burgers idea is pretty good). Futurama is my favorite show (paradoxically I love it more than Star Trek), but Disney couldn't do it right. Given the crossovers the best I can hope for is that the rights were thrown in with the Simpsons' to Universal. And the best case scenario I can think of from that would be one of several new alternate storylines for the Simpsons ride. Maybe we bump into Bender in the Simpsons' basement? Maybe we do some timey-wimey stuff and end up on a jaunt from Planet Express HQ to Luna Park? (shut_up_and_take_my_money.jpg) Or maybe just some merch?
The fox properties strike me as a repeat of the power Rangers mistake. Their content doesn’t really gel with Disney’s brand proposition.
I could have fun in an H Jon Benjamin Land.
No, wait, Family Guy Star Wars Land!
I can definitely see Blizzard Beach being completely re-themed with Ice Age characters. (And Watch it become the busiest water park in Orlando after that).
Disney might be hesitant to include Fox characters in the main parks but I don't think there is much risk of push-back if they slowly start introducing them to the water parks.
Bob's Burgers might work as a restaurant... somewhere? I can't think of a logical place though, except maybe Disney Springs.
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None of that rises to a level that warrants inclusion at Disney imo, especially given how many worthy Disney properties are still underrepresented.