[Updated] Lionsgate to build ‘The Hunger Games’ theme park attractions in the US and China

On the heels of a stage show in London, the Exhibition Tour and attractions in Dubai, Lionsgate is now seeking to build The Hunger Games-themed rollercoasters and “other rides based on the movie.”

Yep. You read that right.

We heard the report about a theme park in Atlanta, and now New York Times is confirming the news. What’s more, a second theme park is being built in Macau in China as well.

“The more we thought about it, the more we realized there was a major opportunity — not just to create something smart and captivating that ‘Hunger Games’ fans would love, but to bring all of our franchises alive in new ways,” said Tim Palen, CMO and now Lionsgate’s chief brand officer.

Mr. Palen conceded that some theme park operators initially approached by the studio were not overly encouraging. He declined to say more, but an obvious first stop would have been Universal Parks & Resorts, which licenses movies from various studios, including “Transformers” from Paramount Pictures.

Not the best use of a dystopian story, but we’re interested in how this pans out.

[UPDATE]

Along with the report, New York Times also included a concept art for Motiongate Dubai’s attractions that we missed before. But it’s something worth looking at.

That park, built by Dubai Parks and Resorts, is scheduled to open next year. It will include areas dedicated to movies from Lionsgate, DreamWorks Animation and Sony Pictures. Most of the Lionsgate zone, at least initially, will be devoted to “The Hunger Games.” After passing through the gates, visitors will arrive in a re-creation of the fictional District 12, a mining region where Katniss grew up. There will be costumed characters and real-life versions of Peeta Mellark’s bakery and the Hob black market.

A lavish roller coaster will be designed to resemble the movies’ high-speed Capitol trains, Mr. Palen said. A simulator-style ride, similar to Disney’s well-known Star Tours attraction, will take people on a hovercraft tour of Panem, the post-apocalyptic nation where “The Hunger Games” takes place.

What are your thoughts on a Hunger Games theme park?

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