When Walt Disney Co. debuted its Cars Land themed area at its California Adventure park in 2012, celebrities and TV crews stretched for blocks along a red carpet leading to the resort.
The park’s newest attraction, the Marvel-superhero-themed Avengers Campus, debuts this weekend without that level of fanfare. The company held a relatively subdued opening ceremony Wednesday evening. It was livestreamed with some celebrities — and fireworks — but without the usual hoopla.
“I’m excited to see the world returning to some level of normalcy,” Josh D’Amaro, head of the entertainment giant’s parks division, said during the event.
Theme parks in California are still operating at 35 per cent capacity limits — until at least June 15, when the caps lift statewide and non-California residents can attend. Even then Disney will likely be limiting crowds as it looks to enforce its own social-distancing targets.
The world’s largest theme-park operator is requiring reservations to enter its resorts. And both Disneyland and the adjacent California Adventure, located in Anaheim, California, are already sold out for much of June. As a result, Disney may be holding back on its promotions, billboards and TV commercials for fear of disappointing fans.
“It’s not like they have to promo — if they do it, they just have to say ‘no’ to people,” said David Price, a theme-park consultant whose father worked on the original Disneyland. “That may be part of their slow opening.”
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