Real Jurassic Park

Until we find dinosaur DNA in tree sap, an Australian theme park has created something as close to Jurassic Park as is humanly possible. Read about that, and the following Theme Park Bits, below.

  • Twentieth Century Fox World is opening in Malaysia.
  • Check out an image of Harry Potter‘s Diagon Alley’s facade at Universal Studios Orlando.
  • Wreck-It Ralph hosts New Year’s Eve at Disneyland.

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Doc Brown Chicken

Super packed edition of Theme Park Bits featuring lots of closings. Below, read about the following:

  • The Back to the Future themed restaurant Doc Brown’s Chicken at Universal Hollywood is closing in January.
  • The Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage at Disneyland is closing for refurbishment.
  • Universal Studios Japan gets $250 million investment to build a Harry Potter park.
  • A Pirates of the Caribbean ride at Shanghai Disneyland might use new technology.
  • Check out an image of where Harry Potter land will be in California.
  • Disneyland and Walt Disney World visitors can enjoy some Mary Poppins exclusives starting this week.
  • See photo and video from the new Raving Rabbids, The Time Machine ride at Futuroscope in France.
  • Rumor has it there might be a Warcraft presence at Universal Orlando in the future.
  • Listen to some of the original sounds and music from the Haunted Mansion.

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Darth Vader Instagram selfie

Darth Vader signs up for Instagram, and posts his very first selfie. Also after the jump:

  • Michael B. Jordan addresses those Episode VII rumors
  • Katee Sachkoff teases big news, but it’s not Star Wars related
  • David Prowse would like to see Darth Vader resurrected
  • The Star Wars Identities exhibit will head to Paris next year
  • Han Solo’s DL-44 blaster is going up for auction this month
  • Is EA Vancouver working on an open-world Star Wars game?
  • Why has Disneyland‘s Star Wars land really been delayed?
  • Check out a behind-the-scenes video from Star Wars: Rebels
  • Take a peek at the new Star Wars art available on Acme Direct

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Disney Star Wars Weekend 2012 4

There’s some potentially soul-crushing news for Disney theme park fans in the latest installment of the excellent insider column MiceAge. None of this is officially confirmed by Disney (then again, when is it?) but the latest column claims plans to turn Disneyland’s Tomorrowland in Anaheim into a more Star Wars centric world have been on hold. Similar plans in Orlando, FL have all but been cancelled.

Then there’s the rumored Monsters Inc. roller coaster that was discussed for Disney’s California Adventure. According to MiceAge, those plans have now been totally scrapped. Read some more details, and find out why, below. Read More »

Gary Goddard Jurassic Park

Disney, Marvel and Universal all get some ink in this edition of Theme Park Bits. Below, read about the following

  • Will a Indiana Jones ride open at Disneyland Paris?
  • The Ratatouille ride will open in Summer 2014.
  • Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige admits to wanting more Marvel rides.
  • Get a glimpse of the new Frozen-influenced World of Color show at Disney California Adventure.
  • Disney legend Richard Sherman wrote a new song for a show based on the ride It’s A Small World.
  • Check out the cover to the Haunted Mansion-inspired comic Disney Kingdoms: Seekers of the Weird.
  • A Frozen meet and greet is now open in Epcot.
  • Read a fantastic interview with the man behind Universal rides like Jurassic Park, King Kong, Terminator and Spider-Man.

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Harry Potter cast drinking butterbeer

Butterbeer is available at every corner pub within the wizarding world, but it’s been considerably more difficult to find in the Muggle realm. For the past few years our only real option has been try and replicate it at home, or to pick up an officially licensed tankard at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Universal Studios Orlando.

However, one non-magical establishment has finally figured out a way to make butterbeer as accessible to Muggles as it is to any pureblood. Starbucks has quietly begun offering the drink on its “secret menu,” though you have to know exactly what to say in order to get it. Hit the jump to get the details.

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Jennifer-Lawrence-in-The-Hunger-Games

Briefly: This probably won’t be exactly the theme park you’re looking for — we presume there will be no killing — but everyone wants to be a victor, and theme park companies know it. Lionsgate announced today that it is considering a new theme park attraction based on The Hunger Games. In the same conference call that brought us the news of Ender’s Game possibly migrating to television, Lionsgate CEO Jon Feltheimer said that the company has had offers in “two territories about potential theme park opportunities” based on The Hunger Games. We don’t know what territories, or what parks.

Still, for certain types of film series, the theme park attraction can be a great money machine that goes beyond what disc media sales and other licensing can create. And so Feltheimer says “We’re excited about those opportunities and we’re pursuing them.”

Maybe someone will design a great attraction that puts attendees not in the Games, but in the crowd during the Reaping, or just throws visitors into the poorest District areas, and has them try to feed a family. That would be a neat twist. Because otherwise a shiny theme park attraction seems like a really weird and even inappropriate way to keep The Hunger Games going.  [The Wrap]

Bob Iger Star Wars

Briefly: Three numbers made Thursday a big day in the world of Star Wars: 12/18/15. That’s the day J.J. Abrams’ Star Wars Episode VII will finally hit theaters in what’s sure to be one of the most hyped openings of all-time. In a new interview, Disney CEO Bob Iger spoke about choosing that date and also confirmed there are lots of Star Wars-centric plans not only for Disneyland and Walt Disney World, but international theme parks too. Watch a video of him discussing it all, below. Read More »

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