Wednesday, November 4, 2009


So yes. From the sounds of things, Disney is going to be opening a park in Shanghai, making it the second park in China.

You can read about it elsewhere so I won't bother to rehash links just give you a few thoughts. (I will have some essential links in the next News From Around The World, most likely.)

Do I think they should build another "Disneyland" style park? Absolutely not. Do I think moving into Shanghai is a bad idea? Absolutely not. It's an opportunity to reach a lot of consumers and, as much as I favor embargoes in some situations, I don't think this is a case where we should say that China is "bad" and Disney shouldn't be there. As the great and sadly fictional Albie Duncan said, Chinese political prisoners are going to be sewing soccer balls with their teeth whether we sell them cheeseburgers or not, so let's sell them cheeseburgers.

That having been said, with a Disneyland already in Hong Kong (albeit a crappy one) I think it is something of overkill to put another one on the main land in China. I think this is a great opportunity for Disney to develop a new theme park concept for the Chinese audience. This doesn't mean they have to re-invent the wheel. They can easily import some aspects of the Disneyland formula like the hub-and-spoke design only don't put a castle in the middle and revolve something different. Maybe bring over New Orleans Square or build a Caribbean land to give Pirates of the Caribbean a home in China. Maybe make the "Studios" concept smaller and turn it into a land for Tower of Terror, Rockin Roller Coaster, and Lights Motors Action. For as much as I hate it, even bring Pixie Hollow over.

My point is, this does not have to be over-saturation for Disney, it can simply be an extension and evolution of a popular concept.


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