Merlin Entertainments buyout completed

Discussion in 'European Parks and Attractions' started by Lurker, 23rd May 2019.

  1. OilyWater

    OilyWater TowersStreet Member

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    Disney have hated Merlin using Star Wars ever since they got Star Wars, and probably waited for the nearest opportunity to force Merlin to shut their attractions.
     
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  2. Tim

    Tim TowersStreet Member

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    I can not confirm or deny anything, but from my understanding Disney have not been forcing other Star Wars attractions to close. What they have been doing is increasing the licencing costs year on year until it's no longer viable for any other Star Wars attractions to exist.
    And they charge per character. So if for example you have a platoon of Storm Troopers march through the park the licence is payed individually for each one.
     
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  3. jon81uk

    jon81uk TowersStreet Member

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    But they added Star Wars at Madame Tussaud’s since the Lucasfilm takeover. I don’t quite see why Legoland is more of a threat than Madame Tussaud’s.

    But the Star Wars display opened in Windsor in 2012 so I would expect it to have 10 year lifespan. But the 8 years it lasted doesn’t seem unreasonable either.
     
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  4. Jb85

    Jb85 TowersStreet Member

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    Nobody owns Star Wars - we the fans do. Silly mouse
     
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  5. DiogoJ42

    DiogoJ42 TowersStreet Member

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    If only that were true.
     
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  6. bluesonichd

    bluesonichd TowersStreet Member

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    then why why why was - Starwars Rise of Skywalker was ever made o_O
     
  7. Jb85

    Jb85 TowersStreet Member

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    You could say that about the Disney trilogy full stop
     
  8. TheBolt

    TheBolt TowersStreet Member

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    Assuming Star Wars has gone because the contact ended, what would either party have gained from renewing the deal?
    I guess Merlin probably sell a few more Star Wars Lego sets off the back of it, but they are never going to get the right to build a Star Wars ride in the parks, just in case it was any good and took the spotlight off Disney's parks.
    All Disney could gain is money whilst helping a rival, but probably pocket change tothe Star Wars machine.

    It just seems like something that reached the end of the road, and opens up a window for something fresh to go into those areas. It is now one for the archives and retro websites to record.
     
  9. bluesonichd

    bluesonichd TowersStreet Member

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    More like in case is was crap and reflected bad on Disney
    ....Merlin building something Disney would be worried about ... :tearsofjoy::tearsofjoy:
     
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  10. jon81uk

    jon81uk TowersStreet Member

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    Did you visit the Star Wars miniland? My memories are that it was pretty good.

    It is likely that it just reached the end of the license and Disney/Lucasfilm decided not to renew.

    But also remember that Disney bought Lucasfilm in 2012, a new Star Wars area opened in Madame Tussauds London in 2015 and (I haven't visited) seems to be reported as being a quality attraction. Lucasfilm is listed on the Merlin website as a partner. I don't think there is a big thing of Disney closing down the other Star Wars exhibits.
     
  11. OilyWater

    OilyWater TowersStreet Member

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    Yeah the Star Wards miniland was pretty good actually.
     
  12. Bert2theSpark

    Bert2theSpark TowersStreet Member

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    Bit off-topic, but with most theme parks closed across the world and Merlin keeping their UK parks open, Merlin are at the moment the biggest theme park operator in the world.

    Leaked image from Merlin HQ
    [​IMG]
     
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  13. Alsty

    Alsty TowersStreet Member

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    Watch this space. I feel some Merlin news is brewing...
     
  14. DistortAMG

    DistortAMG TowersStreet Member

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    Slightly off topic. But also slightly not.

    I was watching this lost interview the other day from the late Steve Jobs. Giving his opinion into why big companies sometimes seem to make bad products. I think this resonates quite well into the situation Merlin found themselves in and why they have seemed to be so off the ball with developments at parks for some time. The products being the parks and rides and the product development people mentioned in the video, equating to people at Merlin Magic Making, or there abouts.

    Hopefully this buy out will bring a big shakeup to the structure.

     
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  15. BarryZola

    BarryZola TowersStreet Member

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    Some good points in there. Just reminds you of John Wardley really and people like that who had the experience of creating these products and built up the experience over many years and understood what people wanted. Then the marketing took over and the product has suffered since (until they allowed him to save Wicker Man towards the end). At the end of the day if you become complacent and therefore allow your product to deteriorate it will catch up with you over time and people will choose something else which excites them more or meets their needs in a better way.
     
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  16. Mr Pearse

    Mr Pearse TowersStreet Member

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    it Will be interesting to see what merlin do in the future with the uk portfolio. In my personal opinion it feels very disjointed you have the successful midways that are constantly pushed. But then you have the theme park division that does very well but sticks out like a sore thumb. I still stick to my thoughts that some point in the future they will sell off the theme park division and focus on the midways more. But then is their any midways or attractions they would also unload to make it more manageable.
     
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  17. DistortAMG

    DistortAMG TowersStreet Member

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    I think it is undoubtedly obvious that Merlin has been a company that has primarily been driving by the marketing department for some time. Which has had a hugely detrimental effect to the end product. To what we see it today.

    Back in the 90's and early 2000's. The company was no doubt driven by the creatives. Then it all changed.

    I hope we see sweeping changes. They have some world class products. The right direction is needed again. Hopefully now that the shareholders are not as important. It is easier to shift the power from within the company, to the departments that make it count.
     
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  18. OilyWater

    OilyWater TowersStreet Member

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    Tussauds' park developments was led by marketing since the early/mid 90s but with better marketing teams that didnt control every single step of the way, and had far better ideas
     
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  19. RicketyCricket

    RicketyCricket TowersStreet Member

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    The Imagineering Story on Disney + gives a great insight to how incredible these creative people can be if they've got support from the suits.

    Must be a nightmare working for MMM.

    Edit: to elaborate on that, Michael Eisner came in and let them go nuts after years of neglect. They responded with the likes of Tower Of Terror, Indiana Jones, Star Tours etc.
     
    Last edited: 17th May 2020
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  20. DistortAMG

    DistortAMG TowersStreet Member

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    While this is true I guess. John Wardley was the director of a company called Tussauds Park Developments from it's creation in the early 90's. I feel this company had much more of an influence and clout when it came to installing attractions. Which I believe is evident in the quality of the developments in the 90's.

    The company now seems to be very vertically structured, with marketing at the top. As opposed to then, where I believe Tussauds attraction developments sat more parallel, rather than below marketing. In a totally different organisational structure. But a structure which ultimately allowed the creativity and innovation to come through. Because marketing, the people who have no idea in building attractions were not the only ones making all the decisions major decisions, like now.
     

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