According to Variety, movie studio Lionsgate has announced that it’s dropping a plan to make a ridiculous “indoor entertainment center” in New York’s Times Square that would’ve been like Disney World for fans of the Lionsgate family of products. Apparently, the plan was to include such tourist-friendly attractions as a Mad Men-themed “dining lounge experience,” an obstacle course inspired by the very popular and successful Divergent movies, a “shooting ride” based on John Wick: Chapter 2, a Hunger Games “flying simulator attraction,” a Hunger Games-inspired bakery, and “the first-ever Lionsgate Studio Store”—a one-stop shop for fans of things that Lionsgate put its name on.
It’s literally the exact thing that Disney does, but skipping the step where you actually build up so much goodwill with fans that merch and a theme park based entirely around a brand doesn’t seem completely absurd. Also, Disney at least has some sort of unifying identity in its products, but nobody lines up at the theater to see the new Lionsgate movie, they want to see the new John Wick movie or Hunger Games movie or Divergent movie (just kidding). Of course, the Variety story does note that there is already a Lionsgate Zone at Dubai’s Motiongate theme park and a Saw-branded escape room in Las Vegas, plus a Lionsgate-branded “vertical theme park” will be opening in China at the end of this month and the Lionsgate Movie World theme park will be opening in South Korea in 2020, so maybe we’re the ones who are wrong on this one and Lionsgate totally deserves its own chain of branded theme parks.
Oh well. Hopefully the people of New York can survive the disappointment of missing out on this weird thing opening up in Times Square. At least they’ll always have Madame Tussauds and the M&M store.