By Amusement Today | November 27, 2012
Beloved Christmas Cast of Characters to Roll-Out in Theme Parks and Aquariums in 2013
NORCROSS, Ga. – Herschend Family Entertainment (HFE) has procured a licensing agreement which provides the theme park company with rights to develop and showcase new entertainment attractions based on the beloved and iconic Christmas character, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and his cast of friends, including the Abominable Snow Monster, Clarice and the Island of Misfit Toys.
This alliance marks the first time that rights have been broadly granted to develop original Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer branded content for the attractions industry, specifically at theme parks and aquariums owned and/or operated by HFE including Dollywood, Silver Dollar City, Stone Mountain Park, Wild Adventures, Newport and Adventure Aquariums.
This agreement further cements HFE’s position as a leader in family Christmas entertainment. With the opportunity to develop original interactive experiences, attraction films, short and long form live stage shows, parades, light shows and other attractions centered on the famed reindeer and his cast of friends, HFE plans to roll out new Rudolph-themed attractions as early as Christmas 2013. This broadens an existing agreement that started with HFE’s Adventure Aquarium near Philadelphia. Since 2008, the popular northeast aquarium has featured Rudolph as part of its annual Christmas Celebration.
“For more than half a century, HFE has successfully created family-centric attractions and experiences which tell classic holiday stories such as A Christmas Carol, The Christmas Story and It’s a Wonderful Life in new ways. We’re thrilled to now bring Rudolph and his friends to life for our guests,” said Anthony Esparza, senior vice president, guest experiences. “Their appeal and story is universal. We’re eager to creatively expand their popularity using new media and environments.”
“It is readily apparent that HFE parks and aquariums place great emphasis on celebrating Christmas traditions and we believe they are the ideal place to develop new ways for families to experience the Rudolph Christmas tradition,” said Jonathan Flom, whose company, Character Arts, represents the Rudolph rights.
HFE’s parks are well-known for their Christmas attractions and traditions, lauded by national outlets like USA Today, People magazine and CNN as the best places to celebrate the season. First airing in 1964, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer is the longest running, highest rated Christmas special in the history of television, sometimes enjoying two network telecasts in the same year. It has also been the leading Christmas special in home video, selling millions and millions of units since its release in 1989.
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