Michael's Corner: Movies That Should Become Attractions

It’s no secret that both Disney's and Universal's Parks do an incredible job of creating attractions that go along with their most popular movies. Toy Story Midway Mania, The Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor, Men In Black Alien Attack, and Jurassic Park River Adventure are just some of the rides on a long list of perfectly adapted movie-based attractions. The only problem with this is, there are so many great movies that have not been turned into attractions (or, at least not yet). 

Both Disney and Universal have so many of their own movies to choose from when it comes to creating their park attractions, that they can’t fit them all in their parks. Not to mention, movies from other studios come in to play occasionally also, hence the soon to be Avatar themed section of Animal Kingdom. 

So with that being said, there are plenty of other movies out there that could be turned into potential fan-favorite attractions. Here is a list of some of those movies:

The Fast and the Furious: Universal Studios has had some photo ops themed to this extremely popular series in the past, but never an actual attraction. There are several different ways they could go about putting an attraction together for these movies. Perhaps the best way would be an action-packed stunt show, not unlike the one over at Disney’s Hollywood Studios. Or they could go with a simulated ride or maybe even a roller coaster. There are many different options here.

Frozen: This is the biggest no-brainer on this list. The immense popularity of this movie gives Disney Imagineers no choice but to get to work on some sort of Frozen themed attraction. They have plenty of theming and photo ops up around the parks, but an actual attraction will no doubt be a huge draw. They could go any way they want with this one. It’s almost a sure thing no matter what they do.

Wreck-it Ralph: This is another very flexible option. This animated hit could be turned into several different types of rides. Obviously some sort of simulated ride is almost always in the mix, but can’t you picture a Sugar-Rush themed roller coaster type ride? As long as, at some point in the ride, it breaks down, only to have Fix It Felix Jr. fix the ride with his golden hammer, I would be happy with any type of ride they choose.

Brave: Pixar never misses. Both the movies and the attractions based off of the movies are always great. So why stop with what we have now? There are plenty of Pixar movies left that don’t have attractions yet. How about some kind of 4-D show based on Merida’s adventures? And the best part about this one is the major role that animals play in the movie allows for this to be an attraction in Animal Kingdom, a park that could use some help in that department. 

The Incredibles: Like Elastigirl herself, this is another very flexible option. Disney could go any number of ways with this movie. Whether they make it a show, a thrill ride or a family ride, the theming could work. Just imagine skating by on Frozone’s ice trail or being flung by Syndrome’s ‘zero point energy’. There are several ways that Disney could make this attraction, dare I say, incredible.

Up: Keep the Pixar options coming. Up is another wildly popular movie with some of Disney’s most lovable characters. Guests might enjoy going on an adventure with Carl, Russell, Dug and Kevin. How about a runaway ride on a balloon lifted house? Whether that be simulated, or an actual parachute type ride, I think visitors would like to see that.

WALL-E: I promise, this is the final Pixar movie on the list. What’s unique about WALL-E is that it gives Disney the opportunity to create an educational attraction. With the underlying theme of humans destroying the planet with their excessive waste, the attraction pretty much sets itself up as a subliminal PSA. All Disney has to do is build it and let the educating begin.

Tron: Sure this wasn’t the most popular movie, but it is an awesome visual journey. Sometimes, that’s all it takes. Tron could easily be turned into a visually stunning dark ride, maybe even with some interactive features. I wouldn’t count on it to be a huge draw, but it could certainly make for a very entertaining attraction.

Alice in Wonderland: Another great option for creating some incredible visual effects. Tim Burton’s 2010 adaptation of the classic story was nominated for dozens of awards, including Academy Awards for ‘Best Visual Effects’ and ‘Best Costume Design’, the latter of which it won. Take those effects and that pageantry, and you’ve got the makings of a fantastic dark ride. Throw in a mesmerizing character like the Mad Hatter and this is a sure thing.

Guardians of the Galaxy: For the past several years, Marvel has been dominating the box office. That proves that there is clearly a huge popularity surrounding the comic book universe. So why not bring those fans to the parks? It has worked at Islands of Adventure with The Amazing Spiderman and The Incredible Hulk being huge draws. I know the theme park rights to certain movies can be a bit difficult to navigate sometimes, but whoever can use this movie, definitely should. It’s certainly going to draw huge crowds into theaters, and once they get a taste of the inter-galactic side of the Marvel universe on screen, you can be sure that they will want to experience it in person. A simulated ride seems like a good fit, perhaps even a replacement for the slowly fading Mission Space at Epcot. 

The rest of the movies on this list are neither Disney nor Universal movies, and thus should be fair game to either entity (barring some more theme park rights agreements that I don’t know about). 

Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs: This is another popular animated couple of movies that should work as a fun and entertaining attraction. Maybe a 4-D show that really incorporates smell would be a good fit for this one. 

Night at the Museum: I know, you probably didn’t expect to see this on the list. But this could easily be turned into a very cool dark ride. Picture being guided through the halls of the Smithsonian or Museum of Natural History in some kind of cart, and everything start coming to life. This could be a great use for those famous Disney animatronics. Getting chased by a giant T-Rex skeleton sounds like a great thrill to me.

Inception: Talk about visually stunning. Could you imagine some kind of walk-through show that would bring Christopher Nolan’s mind bending creation to life? Imagine the walls slowly bending and folding over you. Or just the simple idea of walking through a dream. To me, this could be a major draw and I’m a bit surprised no one has taken a crack at it yet.

Godzilla: Speaking of surprised, it’s hard to believe that no one has turned everyones favorite kaiju into a theme park attraction yet. With all of the dinosaur themed attractions, and even King Kong being brought to life, Godzilla seems like an easy choice. And with the release of the new movie, and the drastic improvement of special effects since rides like King Kong have been shut down, this could be the theme chosen for a ground breaking new attraction. Whether it’s set in Tokyo, New York or San Francisco, fans would flock to the fake setting of any major city to see Godzilla destroy it. This could be a dark ride, a hybrid ride like Transformers or Spiderman, or perhaps even something like we’ve never seen before. 

That’s my list of some of the movie that I would like to see turned into theme park attractions. There are plenty of other great choices out there still. What movie would you like the opportunity to step into yourself?



  1. I think National Treasure could be a great dark ride

  2. Fans of the ride may disagree, but I think it would be great to re-theme the Tomorrowland Speedway into a Sugar Rush Speedway! It's sort of between Fantasyland and Tomorrowland, and Sugar Rush fits both of these lands thematically.


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