I am a huge fan of the “Scream” franchise. I remember as a young teenager hearing so much buzz surrounding the film. It was a sleeper hit that kept growing week after week. It seemed like everyone had seen it except me.
I desperately wanted to see this movie, but I was too young to purchase a ticket to an R-rated movie and nobody I knew would buy it for me. So I did what any high school freshman would do: I bought myself a ticket to a PG movie in the multiplex and got “lost” on the way to the appropriate theater.
I was so excited. I was going to see the most buzzed-about horror movie in recent memory, and boy, it didn’t disappoint. I credit “Scream” with making me the horror fan I am today. So, imagine my shock when my two worlds of “Scream” and theme park love collided when I first heard rumors about “Scream” attractions being developed for both Disney and Universal.
On June 30, 1993, The Walt Disney Company bought Miramax for $60 million. A division of Miramax was Dimension Films, which distributed the “Scream” movies. So, from 1993 until 2010 (when Disney sold Miramax) Disney actually owned the “Scream” franchise. As if that wasn’t mind-blowing enough, I was shocked to find out that Walt Disney Imagineering was rumored to be working on a “Scream” ride for Disney-MGM Studios. Does this sound like a good fit for a Disney Park? No – and the Imagineers probably knew it. To feature a teen slasher movie in a Disney park is lunacy. So how do you get around it? You don’t feature of any of the characters or even the iconic killer from the franchise in the attraction.
Instead, I’ve heard they decided they were going to try and recreate the emotional thrill that the movies gave us. Disney began developing a roller coaster that would take you into some sort of mirror fun maze. It basically sounds like Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith, but instead of Hollywood signs, it would be mirror mazes. They were supposedly looking into a more unique roller coaster vehicle, but development didn’t really get that far; the idea was rumored to be scrapped pretty early on. As much as I love the “Scream” franchise, I wouldn’t want to see an attraction based on it without any of the leading characters.
Enter Universal Studios, who apparently at one point (through a licensing agreement) was working on a 3D “Scream” attraction. This would have been much more like the former T2:3D attraction at Universal Studios Florida, where a 3D movie is mixed with practical in-theater effects, as well as stunt performers. During a portion of the experience, you were going to see the iconic Ghostface cut a hole in the theater screen and a stunt performer in costume would come flying out toward the audience. This 3D movie would have featured the films’ cast, and to me, sounds like a much more appropriate “Scream” experience.
Although neither of these attractions ever came to fruition, it is interesting to think that, maybe at one point, a “Scream” attraction was being developed for both Disney and Universal. Eventually, Ghostface did end up at Universal Studios Hollywood as the icon for Halloween Horror Nights in 2011, as well as the event’s Terror Tram being called “Scream 4 Your Life” that same year.
Would you like to see a “Scream” attraction in one of the theme parks? If so, what kind of attraction would you like for it to be?
If you have any theme park topics you would like to hear my opinion on, let me know in the comments. You might just see it pop up in a future DePaoli on DeParks.
Jeff DePaoli is a producer and voiceover artist living in Los Angeles. He is the host and producer of “That Halloween Podcast,” a new show where you can hear Halloween-loving conversations with fantastic guests from the haunt, horror and entertainment industries every day this October. Listen and claim your FREE Halloween gifts at DePodcastNetwork.com.