MERLIN AND SONY SET SIGHTS ON THEME PARK MARKET
Merlin Entertainments, the company behind Chessington World of Adventures and Legoland, has partnered with Sony Pictures to develop new attractions based on Sony’s intellectual property (IP). The move comes as technology merges with imagination and brands become a crucial factor for consumers looking for a quality experience. The partnership between Merlin and Sony started with the creation of Jumanji-themed attractions in several parks across North America and Europe.
SONY HOPES TO CAPITALIZE ON ITS IP CATALOG
According to Sony Pictures partnerships executive VP Jeffrey Godsick, the partnership between Merlin and Sony is not limited to movies but covers all of the IP content that Sony has. This implies that we may see PlayStation-centric theme parks in the future. Sony will be hoping to follow in the footsteps of Nintendo’s Super Nintendo World, which has been very successful so far.
MERLIN CEO BELIEVES BRAND IDENTITY IS KEY TO SUCCESS
CEO of Merlin Entertainments, Scott O’Neil, believes that a brand identity is crucial to the success of location-based entertainment. Merlin is well aware that using heavily branded attractions can lead to success, and it seems that the company is banking on this strategy going forward. “Is this a brand I know? Is this a brand I love?” are the questions that O’Neil says guests consider when looking for a quality experience.
WORLD OF JUMANJI IS THE LATEST DEVELOPMENT
The World of Jumanji is the latest attraction to come out of Merlin and Sony’s partnership. The $21 million investment in the new ride at Chessington World of Adventures shows the companies’ commitment to creating even bigger and more immersive experiences in the future. Sony’s IP is not limited to Jumanji, and the company is very much open to exploring other franchises.
The future of theme parks seems to be heavily focused on brands and the immersive experiences they can offer. Merlin and Sony are hoping to capitalize on this trend by using Sony’s IP to create new attractions. With Nintendo’s Super Nintendo World proving that branded attractions can be very successful, it wouldn’t be surprising to see more brands trying to enter the market in the future.