'Fast And Furious' Theme Park Ride Coming To Universal Studios
Theme parks have a long history with tying into film and television properties, and if there is a king of such marketing practices, itís obviously The Walt Disney Corporation. As of late, the park has aggressively developed attractions based on their original (and acquired) intellectual properties, and they havenít been shy about it. This doesnít sit well with long time, and now recently motivated rival Universal Studios and now there's news that they're doing something about it. According to The New York Times , the Hollywood location in the theme park division of the Comcast owned entertainment giant (whew, that's a mouthful) is looking to become a more aggressive competitor to Disneyís typical brand of family friendly excitement, and that begins with developing a new ride based on one of their most popular franchises: Fast & Furious.
Their tactic is one that sounds both oddly familiar and refreshing at the same time, at least according to the description of Fast and Furious: Supercharged, which promises to be:
...a movie-thrill ride hybrid in which occupants of Universalís famed back-lot trams will be encircled by 400-foot-long movie screens. "Weíre going to make it feel like those trams are being pulled through the streets at speeds of over 100 miles per hour," said Chick Russell, an executive producer for Universal Creative.
Sounds cool, doesnít it? However, if you know the Universal Studios park, or theme parks in general, you know that new attractions mean one of two things: either thereís going to be an expansion built, or a less-popular attraction is going away. Given that the park is also planning a village based off of The Simpsons, not to mention the fact that theyíve already spent tons of money on the West Coast version of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, it's possible that another expansion to the park isn't really feasible. For that reason it sounds far more likely that their King Kong 360 3D attraction is going to be going away.
The specifications of the Fast and Furious experience sound like an almost perfect fit for the location of the four year old attraction, which was based off of one of Universalís more recent lackluster legacy titles. The loss of King Kong Encounter bummed out a lot fans, since it was an attraction that existed since1986, but nostalgic connection alone doesnít make a memorable attraction. With the Fast and Furious franchise more popular than ever, this is the perfect move to not only fight off the sorcery of Mickey, but also to generate lines out the door. How this attraction will age is another question, but for now itís kind of exciting to imagine scenes like the one below being translated into a thrilling (but safe) theme park experience.
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