When we visit theme parks it's because we want to experience our favorite movies in new and exciting ways. Today you can enter the Marvel Cinematic Universe at Disneyland Resort or pass through the gates of Jurassic World at the Universal Orlando Resort Velocicoaster. But it’s almost always new movies that get the new rides. However, one theme park is getting ready to open an entire theme park land dedicated to one of the most popular movies of all time, The Wizard of Oz. The only problem is if you want to experience the new Wizard of Oz land, you’ll need to take a trip to Australia.
Yesterday, Warner Bros. Movie World, located on Australia’s Gold Coast, revealed plans to open a new precinct in the theme park dedicated to the Wizard of Oz. The area will include two new attractions, a suspended family coaster, and a family boomerang racer. Based on concept art, the boomerang racer will exist in a part of the land that looks like Dorthey’s Kansas home, while the suspended coaster will be attached to the castle of the Wicked Witch. An area that looks like the Emerald City will also be constructed, complete with yellow brick road and looks to be more of a general play area.
Theme park attractions are often a symbol that a movie has achieved a certain level of success and cultural ubiquity. Having said that, they’re also promotional, which means we often see new rides designed to celebrate new movies. It’s awesome to see Warner Bros. Movie World going back and giving a classic like The Wizard of Oz the theme park love that it deserves. If theme parks had been a thing in the 1940s you can be all but certain we would have seen Wizard of Oz attractions, but the movie had seemingly missed its window.
We have an embarrassment of riches when it comes to theme parks in the United States but there are some top quality parks in other parts of the world that deserve notice. Several movie studios have parks elsewhere. Warner Bros. runs a park in Abu Dhabi in addition to Australia. Lionsgate has a theme park in China, and another in Dubai that includes a John Wick roller coaster. Some of your favorite movies have theme park attractions, you just have to leave the country to find them.
Warner Bros. Movie World currently has areas of its park dedicated to the superheroes of DC, as well as Scooby-Doo and Looney Tunes. It also has shows dedicated to moviemaking in general, similar to what you might find at Universal Studios Hollywood. The addition of the Wizard of Oz area will fit perfectly into what Movie World already has going on. The new precinct is expected to be completed in 2024.
CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian. Armchair Imagineer. Epcot Stan. Future Club 33 Member.
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