Which Of These Mega Movie Franchises Started Off As An Amusement Park Ride?
Answer: Pirates of the Caribbean
If you ask somebody today if they love Pirates of the Caribbean, they’ll likely give you an opinion on Pirates of the Caribbean, the grossing-in-the-billions multi-film franchise production that was kicked off in 2003 with The Curse of the Black Pearl.
If you asked anyone the same question in the 20th century, however, they’d probably tell you that love was a strong word for an amusement ride, but that they did rather enjoy the silliness of the Walt Disney pirate-themed attraction.
The original Pirates of the Caribbean opened at Disneyland in 1967, and was the last Disney attraction whose direction was overseen by Walt Disney himself. The ride was originally intended to be a walk-through wax museum attraction, but thanks to the success of It’s a Small World at the 1964 New York World’s Fair, was changed to a log-ride attraction. The ride takes you through a series of chambers, snapshots of pirate life focused on treasure (guarded by skeleton pirates), imprisonment, shipwrecks, Davy Jones and Blackbeard, and a town overrun by pirates, among other scenes.
Not only was Pirates of the Caribbean based on many of these iconic scenes (and the levity found therein), but after the success of the movie franchise, the rides at Walt Disneyland, Disney World, and most of the other Disney parks have been updated with characters from the films and Easter egg references to them hidden throughout.