Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Scott And Carol Present - IAAPA 2017

Legends: Adapting Intellectual Properties for Parks and Attractions: What Works, What Doesn't. 

It was Wednesday afternoon again at IAAPA, and that means one thing. The Legends Panel, organized by Bob Rogers of BRC Imagination Arts,, and sponsored this year by Whitewater.

The first order of business was a moving tribute to Marty Sklar, Disney Legend with his own window on Main Street. He has been a mentor to both the panel and many in attendance, and his influence is already sorely missed in the industry

You can see the empty chair next to Scott Trowbridge, in honor of Marty. Who will fill his shoes? Many eagerly await to find out.

Joe Rohde, Executive Designer and Vice President, Creative, Walt Disney Imagineering

Joe is the lead designer of Disney’s Pandora, The World of Avatar and Disney's Animal Kingdom.  Rohde was also the principal creative force behind the park's Expedition Everest thrill ride, which debuted in 2006. He was one of the lead designers behind the Aulani hotel in OahuHawaii.

Thierry Coup, Senior Vice President - Creative Studio, Universal Creative.

Thierry leads the creative development of upcoming attractions for Universal Parks and Resorts globally. He has played an integral role in shaping the blockbuster rides and attractions at Universal Parks and Resorts for more than 20 years. Thierry is probably best known for pushing the envelope in the creative design of world-class projects, such as The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man,  Transformers: The Ride 3D, King Kong 360-3D, and The Wizarding World of Harry Potter.

Scott Trowbridge, Portfolio Creative Executive, Walt Disney Imagineering

Scott is WDI’s creative lead for all things Star Wars, including the design and development of 2 new 14-acre lands going into Disneyland and Disney’s Hollywood Studios, Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.  Scott previously led WDI Research & Development and oversaw the Blue Sky Design Studio where Imagineers from multiple disciplines come together to explore and develop new ideas for Disney’s theme parks and resorts worldwide.  Scott has spent most of his career dreaming up new and unique ways to entertain people, ranging from state-of-the-art themed attractions to film, theater and retail. Prior to joining Disney, Scott worked as vice president for the creative division of NBC/Universal’s Theme Park & Resorts.

Here are just are few quotes from the panel concerning the use of Intellectual Property in amusement parks:

Joe: A film is a 3rd person narrative whereas an attraction is a 1st person narrative. Our artistic medium is direct experience and everything should be based on everyone instead of the purest fans of the IP.

Joe studies classical architecture, searching for what engages the audience.

Thierry: Attempting to exceed the audience expectations is the fun part. we work with a 90-second storyline, and we created Spiderman the Ride before the movie came out.

Thierry finds inspiration from TED Talks, and regularly attends the conference, and also studies Leonardo DaVinci, who combined mathematics, engineering, and art with his work.

Scott: It is our job to understand the DNA of a creative work and distill it into an attraction. Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic. No fad will overcome a weak story. The audience is the park guest, and they own the park, creators are just stewards of the park.

Like all good things, this too had to end. Instead of crying because it was over, most laughed because it happened as they queued up for autographs and photographs. If this doesn't happen next year we might blow off IAAPA.