harry potter video game ride

Harry Potter doesn’t own wizards and magic wands — though The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios Orlando certainly popularized selling them in merchandise form.

The magic wand is a particularly clever piece of marketing that also is deeply connected to the world of Harry Potter — there are whole subplots about the importance of a wizard’s bond with his wand and how the “wand chooses the wizard.” Heck, the entire finale of Harry Potter hinges on the ownership of a wand! Merlin’s wand in Disney’s The Sword in the Stone? Not so pivotal.

But Disneyland Paris is piggybacking on the success of the Harry Potter wands, and creating their own brand of magic wands that can be sold at a Merlin’s Shop near you! And by near you, I mean exclusively in Disneyland Paris.

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BBC theme park 1

Whovians rejoice: A BBC theme park is coming to the U.K. Attractions based on Doctor Who, Top Gear, and Sherlock are thought likely, though they haven’t yet been confirmed. A Doctor Who ride is not as novel an idea as you might think — Disney considered bringing the sci-fi property to Tomorrowland back in the ’80s.

Since the new park is backed by Paramount Pictures, it’s also expected to feature various Paramount franchises — possibly including Star Trek and Transformers. More on the planned BBC theme park after the jump. Read More »

Working Title Developing New Screen Version of Merlin

There’s no accounting for logic when it comes to film development, but that is both the beauty and the insanity of the business. This past summer audiences had a chance to see The Sorcerers Apprentice, in which Nicolas Cage played one of three disciples of Merlin. (Alfred Molina and Monica Bellucci played the other two disciples.) And audiences shrugged. So, now, when it comes to developing a new film about Merlin, some will point to The Sorcerer’s Apprentice and say, “but that didn’t work!” Never mind that audiences didn’t skip Apprentice because it had anything to do with Merlin; they skipped it because it looked superficial or silly or just not entertaining enough.

So, when you see that Working Title is developing a Merlin film that, like The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, will set the magical character’s story in the present day, what’s the response? Read More »