Renamed Rides

Sunday, June 21, 2009 10:38 PM

I have a question about ride names and renaming. When parks name their rides after something say like, Superman, Batman, Terminator, etc., are they being paid by those companies to name the rides for cross promotion? Or is it the parks who are seeking names that people are familiar with to sell their rides to the public? I've seen some rides get renamed, most notably at Kings Dominion. They had the movie theme going strong at the park while it was under Paramont ownership. Now that it's owned by Cedar Fair, some of the rides that had borrowed names from Hollywood have been modified/changed. For example:

  • Outer Limits Flight of Fear > Flight of Fear
  • Tomb Raider > The Crypt
  • Italian Job Stunt Coaster > Backlot Stunt Coaster

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Sunday, June 21, 2009 10:59 PM

It's all licensing. Six Flags licenses the Warner Bros. Looney Tunes characters as well as the Britt Allcroft Shining Time Station characters for use in their parks and in promotional materials. I know it's for a set amount of years, and the park can opt to extend the license.

I suppose the same is said of movie and television tie-ins.

In the case of Cedar Fair, they most likely did not want to pay to license out the monikers some of the rides they acquired with the parks. Either that, or Paramount refused to allow the continued use of their "intellectual" property once the parks were sold to Cedar Fair.

You're also missing:

Drop Zone Stunt Tower > Drop Tower

Top Gun > Flight Deck

Face/Off > Invertigo

Last edited by kRaXLeRidAh, Sunday, June 21, 2009 11:22 PM
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Sunday, June 21, 2009 11:37 PM

So you're saying usually it is a mutual agreement between the park and media company, not one paying the other for the rights?

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Sunday, June 21, 2009 11:55 PM

There has been a rumor going around that Cedar Fair will not renew it's contract for the Nick characters when the time comes, because of the fee that the park chain has to pay.

Also, part of the reason Hard Rock Park failed is because of the high licensing fees that they had to pay to the Hard Rock brand, along with the bands that the rides were themed after.

So I am going to assume that the tie-ins are more than likely something that the parks have to pay for. There are probably some instances where the park gets the use of an intellectual property as a trade for advertising, but if so it isn't common.

The park business has to figure out if paying the fees benefit them. I think it does. I'm sure the tie-ins help, at least the popular ones anyway.

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Monday, June 22, 2009 12:24 AM

One ride comes to mind.....voodoo.

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Monday, June 22, 2009 10:11 AM

It seems like the costs associated with such licensing is pretty high. It obviously works best if the company which owns the park also owns licensing rights (Disney/Universal/Paramount). Otherwise you might pay an arm and a leg.

As for the Nick stuff, Sponge Bob was a money tree 10 years ago, but not as much anymore. Maybe I'm just out of the loop, but Nick doesn't seem to have the big impact it did when they first added it.

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Monday, June 22, 2009 12:19 PM

I don't understand why it cost's so much to get licensing for cartoons like sponge bob and dora.

They are basicly paying the cartoon makers to advertise the cartoons. I don't get it.

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Monday, June 22, 2009 12:31 PM

Because things like Spongebob or Peanuts or Looney Toons are successful creations that create interest and have value.

You have it almost exactly backwards. The park doesn't get people to watch Spongebob and Dora by having the characters there, Spongebob and Dora get people to the park by being there.

Or at least that's the prevailing wisdom.

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Monday, June 22, 2009 12:57 PM

What's wrong with the prevailing wisdom is that both sides do get benefits (not unlike ACE and parks). Although clearly the IP is created thru television shows and the park(s) get more out of the characters than they put into them, there is some value to the network(s) as well. If not for the Cartoon Network Superstore at SFoG, I'd never have gotten merchandise for ATHF, Harvey Birdman, SeaLab 2020, etc.

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Monday, June 22, 2009 1:03 PM

rollergator said:
Although clearly the IP is created thru television shows and the park(s) get more out of the characters than they put into them, there is some value to the network(s) as well.

That's why the price is what it is.

It'd be more if the parks had less to offer and less if the IP holder had more to gain. :)

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Tuesday, June 23, 2009 12:04 AM

Paramount Parks ditched the Outer Limits license years before Cedar Fair bought the parks.

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Tuesday, June 23, 2009 3:00 PM

Had to go back to this again to add some more:

rollergator said:
...there is some value to the network(s) as well. If not for the Cartoon Network Superstore at SFoG, I'd never have gotten merchandise for ATHF, Harvey Birdman, SeaLab 2020, etc.

I'm not sure how it works (anyone?), but I imagine there's a split on the money you paid for that merch. Who gets how much is probably the terms of the deal.

I guess that's pretty much what I said above, but it's kind of a different angle on the same idea. The point is that compromise is made that best suits everyone. (the definition of doing business, really :) )

Both sides have something to offer and the money exchanged makes it an "even trade" in the eyes of the two sides involved.

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Tuesday, June 23, 2009 3:03 PM

Paramount dropped "Outer Limits" from the name when the TV show got canceled.

Last edited by robotfactory, Tuesday, June 23, 2009 3:03 PM
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Tuesday, June 23, 2009 3:49 PM

Word on the street is that the merchandise issue is exactly what makes the Dickster loath the licensing agreement. He doesn't like sharing that money, and (mistakenly, I suspect) believes they could make just as much selling Snoopy and Woodstock plush.

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Tuesday, June 23, 2009 4:50 PM

^Jeff 1, Kinzel 0 (well, -2, but there's no negative scoring in baseball).

Lord Gonchar said:The point is that compromise is made that best suits everyone. (the definition of doing business, really :) )Both sides have something to offer and the money exchanged makes it an "even trade" in the eyes of the two sides involved.

Which is why I'm still puzzled by the Snoopy thing at MoA. I'll never understand how come Snoopy's handlers couldn't (wouldn't?) "find a way" to keep the beagle in that mall.


Oh, and ummm...I got the coveted double Gonch-quote...so nyah. :)

Last edited by rollergator, Tuesday, June 23, 2009 4:52 PM
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Wednesday, June 24, 2009 1:17 AM

Don't know why this topic keeps coming back to me, but I came across an article about TV ratings.

In one half hour on any given Sunday morning, more eyes are on Spongebob than any of the regional, seasonal amusement parks get in an entire season. (around 3.5 - 4 million for Spongebob)

If you want the tween market, in the 2nd week of may one episode of Nickelodeon's iCarly drew more viewers than any of the NBA playoff games that week and was the most watched show on cable TV. (6.5 million viewers)

Nickelodeon has been the number-one rated basic cable network for the past 14 years.

That's why they pay to put those characters in the park.

Although I do wonder how much power these licenses hold. Do they really draw? Do certain ones sell more merch? How much does having them in your advertising help?

Apparently Dickey K. thinks he'd be better off selling less with more of the cut. I wonder if that's true? You'd think they'd have the numbers - especially with Peanuts in some parks and Nick in others. Certainly enough info to make some decent decisions.

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Wednesday, June 24, 2009 11:44 AM

But something Dicky K. probably didn't consider is the memories people will attach to the licensed merch that they bought at the park. Every time a kid hugs his Mr. Crabs plush, he will be reminded of the awesome day he spent at the park, for example. Selling more merch like that might be more helpful, overall.

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