Harry Potter, Jaws, Jurassic Park and King Kong have all made the leap from the big screen to entertaining tourists as theme park attractions, and it was just announced that Avatar will be solidifying itself in popular culture by having an attraction built at Disney Parks.
From the Disney Parks blog:
James and his producing partner Jon Landau and their team at Lightstorm Entertainment will serve as creative consultants on the project and will work side-by-side with our Walt Disney Imagineers as we dream up experiences that will take our guests deep into worlds of AVATAR like never before. There are also two sequels to the record setting first film in the works, which will offer more fascinating stories, characters and locations to explore in the AVATAR universe. Disney’s Animal Kingdom at Walt Disney World Resort is planned as the site of the first AVATAR-themed land with construction expected to begin by 2013.
We believe Disney’s Animal Kingdom is a great fit for this project because it was created to give guests the opportunity to experience the worlds of animals and nature – real and mythical – in new ways. Disney’s Animal Kingdom also celebrates adventure, living in harmony with nature and environmental stewardship – themes that are deeply rooted in the story of AVATAR.
James Cameron and 20th Century Fox have a global franchise with Avatar, so the arrival of merchandise, video-games and theme parks is just another way to keeping the money rolling in. An Avatar attraction is a good idea given its popularity and the world Cameron has created, but construction won’t begin until 2013 so tourists won’t be bonding with mechanical Mountain Banshee’s for a few years yet.