Hold on to your brains as two Disney theme parks welcome a unique new attraction.
When somebody talks about zombies in Florida, it’s usually in a news story that involves someone ingesting a questionable substance and then trying to eat a stranger’s face.
There was also a zombie alert during a power outage in the city of Lake Worth. “Power outage and zombie alert for residents of Lake Worth and Terminus. There are now far less than seven thousand three hundred and eighty customers involved due to extreme zombie activity. Restoration time uncertain,” reported the Palm Beach Post on a page that’s no longer active.
Terminus is, of course, the town from The Walking Dead and city officials moved quickly to reassure residents that there were no actual zombies.
“I want to reiterate that Lake Worth does not have any zombie activity currently and apologize for the system message,” reads the statement.
Now, Walt Disney (DIS) – Get The Walt Disney Company Report plans to bring actual zombies (of the television kind) to both its Disney World resort in Florida and Disneyland in California.
Wait, Disney Has Zombies?
Parents of tweens likely know about Disney Channel’s “Zombies” franchise. It’s sort of a supernatural “High School Musical,” with few actual scares (since it’s for kids). If you’re not familiar, here’s how Disney describes the latest installment.
“It’s Zed and Addison’s final year at Seabrook and things are better than ever. The town has finally accepted monsters as a part of Seabrook and has become a safe haven for monsters and humans alike. …. However, the town is shocked by the arrival of a new group of intergalactic outsiders — Aliens, who show up to compete in the cheer-off.”
Yes, that sounds ridiculous, if you are an adult, but it’s a fairly typical Disney franchise built around good-looking football players and cheerleaders with the whole zombies and aliens thing making it a new spin on that tired genre.
Zombies Make Way for Disney’s Theme Parks
With the release of “Zombies 3” imminent, Disney plans to bring the music from the series to its theme parks. Dubbed “Zom-Beats Bash,” the show will come to Disney World’s Disney Springs while the Disneyland version will be at Downtown Disney.
“Zom-Beatz Bash is a 20-minute stage show event for guests of all ages to enjoy. Try out some zombie dance moves, sing along to favorite songs or snap a pic with a “Zombies 3”-inspired photo wall during the DJ-hosted event. Come in costume and BAMM to the music!” the company said in a news release.
And while Zombies is hardly a top-tier Disney property, this show demonstrates the company’s ability to leverage every asset.
Adults without tweens at home likely don’t know this franchise, but the target audience that has watched these movies has a connection to the series. That should drive them to want to see the live show, giving Disney more foot traffic to its two theme-park-adjacent shopping areas.
Disney knows how to squeeze every last ounce of revenue from every character it owns. This seemingly minor move makes clear that the company knows how to extract value not just from Marvel, Pixar, and Star Wars, but also its lesser (and much more ridiculous) properties.
“Zombies 3” will premiere July 15 on Disney+ and Aug. 12 on Disney Channel.