'Night at the Museum' Theme Park Concept Art Reveals an Unmade Ride Based on the Film Franchise

While plenty of films lead to theme-park attractions, especially films designed for the whole family, not everything makes the successful shift. But some get close. Recently, some concept art for a theme park ride tied to the Night at the Museum franchise was unearthed online, allowing us to get a glimpse at what might have been.

Theme Park University found some concept art for an unmade attraction designed for an un-named park themed to the first movie in the Night at the Museum franchise, courtesy of Legacy Entertainment. From the looks of it, the dark-ride-style attraction would’ve sent its guests through a facsimile of the American Museum of Natural History in New York City, where they’d encounter many of the exhibits that come to life at night and torment Ben Stiller.

Never Say Never

When Night at the Museum opened in 2006, its distributor, 20th Century Fox, wasn’t yet owned by the Walt Disney Company. Now that Disney does own Fox, there’s always the slight possibility that this concept art – or just the very idea of a Night at the Museum attraction – could turn into something real.

But it’s a little surprising that this specific art never turned into something real. The film franchise grossed more than a billion dollars, and the first film spawned multiple sequels. More to the point, the idea of the movie lends itself quite naturally to theme-park attractions. (And anyone who knows the Disney theme parks knows that they love…or, well, they used to love the balance between education and entertainment.)

Of course, if we can now ask ourselves, “What Fox films may lead to theme-park attractions from Disney?”, the possibilities extend far beyond Night at the Museum. This concept art only opens doors that some of you may never have thought possible before. How about a whole section of Disney’s Animal Kingdom themed to the Ice Age series, including the looming reality of extinction for many of the animals in the franchise? Or a section of the same theme park tied to the very grim and very adult rehash of the Planet of the Apes series? Or maybe even a land themed to James Cameron’s Avatar? Well…scratch that last one, it’s far too crazy to ever succeed.

Seriously, though, if Disney ever does decide to dig through the Fox archives to expand its theme-park reach, this Night at the Museum concept art is a pretty cool way to start. No reason they can’t go back to the drawing board.

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