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Blog: The curtain rises again for Phantom Theater (includes best POV of the ride I’ve seen!)


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Well, I’ve been waiting for that POV since 2003. That took me back. Wow. Can’t help but marvel at how cool that ride was. It’s a shame it isn’t still around. 
 

Looking forward to the show and the continued use of PT in the park. 

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40 minutes ago, TombRaiderFTW said:

I'm so curious about what kind of show it's gonna be.

Gonna go ahead and be That Guy™: do you think it'll be another Haut-Vol production?

My understanding is that it is not Haut-Vol.

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The question is if Paramount had left the ride, what would've happened to the ride over Cedar Fair's ownership? Would we see an overhaul or renovation, or would we see a replacement if the ride animatronics deteriorated. I mean we've seen the condition of Boocifer, so would we have that same condition for the ride, or would they choose to put something else in?

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49 minutes ago, CoasterJack said:

The question is if Paramount had left the ride, what would've happened to the ride over Cedar Fair's ownership? Would we see an overhaul or renovation, or would we see a replacement if the ride animatronics deteriorated. I mean we've seen the condition of Boocifer, so would we have that same condition for the ride, or would they choose to put something else in?

Oh, I don’t even think they would’ve touched it. It probably would’ve deteriorated to the point where they would’ve closed the ride without a replacement. One of the reasons I think Boo Blasters looks as “good” as it does, is because CF had an easily re-skinnable attraction in SDATHC. That was Cedar Fair then, though. 
 

Now, I truly believe that Cedar Fair (and general park management) is capable of maintaining an attraction of that caliber. Whether they would choose to do so is a different story. But recent additions show that they aren’t afraid of detail or theming. But I do fear something to the tune of what’s at Knott’s now with their rebooted Beary Tales attraction. There’s a place for screens in dark rides, but not to that extent. 

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If the video seems a bit odd to anyone, they said during CoasterStock that they used original audio clips for this video rather than whatever audio was captured when this video was made. I'm curious as to where they even found this footage.

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Posted (edited)
On 5/28/2022 at 12:52 AM, Oldiesmann said:

If the video seems a bit odd to anyone, they said during CoasterStock that they used original audio clips for this video rather than whatever audio was captured when this video was made. I'm curious as to where they even found this footage.

This was probably 10+ years ago, but I remember reading a piece about the closure of the ride. There was a tour before it was removed and I think there was a “raffle” where a POV was given to one of the attendees. So maybe it’s the same video? Totally guessing. 
 

Edit: Found the article. 
 

http://www.dafe.org/articles/darkrides/phantomPharewell.html

 

And here’s a bonus for anyone interested!

https://www.dafe.org/articles/darkrides/phantomTheater.html

Edited by beastfan11
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3 hours ago, beastfan11 said:

This was probably 10+ years ago, but I remember reading a piece about the closure of the ride. There was a tour before it was removed and I think there was a “raffle” where a POV was given to one of the attendees. So maybe it’s the same video? Totally guessing. 
 

Edit: Found the article. 
 

http://www.dafe.org/articles/darkrides/phantomPharewell.html

 

And here’s a bonus for anyone interested!

https://www.dafe.org/articles/darkrides/phantomTheater.html

i completely forgot those article exist.

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  • 2 weeks later...

What id LOVE to see would be a new Peanuts dark ride "...it's a great ride Charlie Brown" that has the Peanuts characters celebrating holiday through the year. It would tie in perfectly to the TV specials and be a subtle nod to the idea of the Smurfs ride. The peanuts are essentially flat 2-D characters so the conversion should be fairly easy. Add in a few dimensional animatronics, but essentially the same approach as BooBlasters

Phantom Theatre (as we knew it) will most likely never return in the 3-d, fully sculpted character form - too expensive to produce and maintain, so instead, build a NEW EXPERIENCE in the turn around of Racer. The queue structure is already there - its already overgrown and haunted looking, its "out of sight" enough so it could be kept unkempt and not interfere with the look of the park. Open up the path around WindSeeker better (that whole area is probably going to get a revamp in a few years with The Vortex replacement). Phantom Theatre there would be a "Midway Mania" style ride with 3-d, screen based games integrated with dimensional sets and props to develop a richer experience that the Disney bare-bones version. Throw coal in the boiler room - throw roses for Hilda's performance. Throw cards at Houdelini. I'd love to see a real dark ride without interactive, but I just don't ever see that happening. 

LAST - Keep the overall look of the "big box" in Rivertown, but put a wild mouse coaster with an elevator lift in it - theme to an abandoned mine shaft of the (net door Miami Valley Mining Company). Minimal theming inside the box (like projection mapping animation on mining equipment, rock slides etc) Then we would have 3 great dark ride experiences. 

 

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1 hour ago, brenthodge said:

What id LOVE to see would be a new Peanuts dark ride "...it's a great ride Charlie Brown" that has the Peanuts characters celebrating holiday through the year. It would tie in perfectly to the TV specials and be a subtle nod to the idea of the Smurfs ride. The peanuts are essentially flat 2-D characters so the conversion should be fairly easy. Add in a few dimensional animatronics, but essentially the same approach as BooBlasters

Phantom Theatre (as we knew it) will most likely never return in the 3-d, fully sculpted character form - too expensive to produce and maintain, so instead, build a NEW EXPERIENCE in the turn around of Racer. The queue structure is already there - its already overgrown and haunted looking, its "out of sight" enough so it could be kept unkempt and not interfere with the look of the park. Open up the path around WindSeeker better (that whole area is probably going to get a revamp in a few years with The Vortex replacement). Phantom Theatre there would be a "Midway Mania" style ride with 3-d, screen based games integrated with dimensional sets and props to develop a richer experience that the Disney bare-bones version. Throw coal in the boiler room - throw roses for Hilda's performance. Throw cards at Houdelini. I'd love to see a real dark ride without interactive, but I just don't ever see that happening. 

LAST - Keep the overall look of the "big box" in Rivertown, but put a wild mouse coaster with an elevator lift in it - theme to an abandoned mine shaft of the (net door Miami Valley Mining Company). Minimal theming inside the box (like projection mapping animation on mining equipment, rock slides etc) Then we would have 3 great dark ride experiences. 

 

Great ideas but I doubt they will invest in 3 dark rides 

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Other than naming a kiddie ride something Peanuts related LOL, I would be surprised if we totally themed a ride to Peanuts or some other IP.

What if they went to the expense to redo Boo Blasters to a Peanuts themed ride (which your idea does sound really awesome) and then two years later CF and Peanuts don't agree on pricing and then they have to de-peanut it.  Then we are stuck with yet another ride that lost its character due to IP de-theming issues.

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Oh I agree, it looks like Peanuts will stick around for sometime with CF, but whenever one pays for IP, something can always come up or the relationship sours.  I think it is why we have seen recent large attractions are IP created by CF so that they maintain control of it.  It is a lot easier to retheme a kiddie land (Peanuts 500 is some paint and decals LOL) than it is a major ride, as anyone around long enough to remember Top Gun to Flight Deck, Tomb Raider to the Crypt, etc. can attest LOL.

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On 5/29/2022 at 11:39 AM, beastfan11 said:

This was probably 10+ years ago, but I remember reading a piece about the closure of the ride. There was a tour before it was removed and I think there was a “raffle” where a POV was given to one of the attendees. So maybe it’s the same video? Totally guessing. 
 

Edit: Found the article. 
 

http://www.dafe.org/articles/darkrides/phantomPharewell.html

 

And here’s a bonus for anyone interested!

https://www.dafe.org/articles/darkrides/phantomTheater.html

The footage used in the KI YouTube video was filmed just prior to its closure.  There are certain unfortunate indicators in the footage that it was near the end of its life - most notably the condition of the attraction's animatronics.  The park edited the footage from the ride too, for instance, the levitating dress does not appear because in its final 2 seasons someone had ruined it with fake blood.   Adding the blood was a poor choice made by someone that wasn't smart enough to realize the ride was designed to be tongue-in-cheek, not macabre.

Prior to the closure, DAFE, as well as ACE was invited for tours.  Most of the figures had been removed by the time of the ACE tour.  There were also several "personal" tours given, both before it was deconstructed as well as after the transformation to Scooby had begun.

Final rides on Phantom theatre were done by the general public.  I was in the 3rd to the last car.  The final 2 were filled with employees that worked on the ride.

Here's some fun, abeit dark & overexposed pics of myself and friends playing around with some of the props during an individual tour we took before PT was removed and during another tour as it was being converted to SDATHC...

 

img759.jpg

img763.jpg

img764.jpg

img765.jpg

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6 hours ago, Shaggy said:

The footage used in the KI YouTube video was filmed just prior to its closure.  There are certain unfortunate indicators in the footage that it was near the end of its life - most notably the condition of the attraction's animatronics.  The park edited the footage from the ride too, for instance, the levitating dress does not appear because in its final 2 seasons someone had ruined it with fake blood.   Adding the blood was a poor choice made by someone that wasn't smart enough to realize the ride was designed to be tongue-in-cheek, not macabre.

Prior to the closure, DAFE, as well as ACE was invited for tours.  Most of the figures had been removed by the time of the ACE tour.  There were also several "personal" tours given, both before it was deconstructed as well as after the transformation to Scooby had begun.

Final rides on Phantom theatre were done by the general public.  I was in the 3rd to the last car.  The final 2 were filled with employees that worked on the ride.

Here's some fun, abeit dark & overexposed pics of myself and friends playing around with some of the props during an individual tour we took before PT was removed and during another tour as it was being converted to SDATHC...

 

img759.jpg

img763.jpg

img764.jpg

img765.jpg

Great stuff! Thanks so much for sharing!

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On 6/9/2022 at 12:20 PM, Shaggy said:

The footage used in the KI YouTube video was filmed just prior to its closure.  There are certain unfortunate indicators in the footage that it was near the end of its life - most notably the condition of the attraction's animatronics.  The park edited the footage from the ride too, for instance, the levitating dress does not appear because in its final 2 seasons someone had ruined it with fake blood.   Adding the blood was a poor choice made by someone that wasn't smart enough to realize the ride was designed to be tongue-in-cheek, not macabre.

Prior to the closure, DAFE, as well as ACE was invited for tours.  Most of the figures had been removed by the time of the ACE tour.  There were also several "personal" tours given, both before it was deconstructed as well as after the transformation to Scooby had begun.

Final rides on Phantom theatre were done by the general public.  I was in the 3rd to the last car.  The final 2 were filled with employees that worked on the ride.

Here's some fun, abeit dark & overexposed pics of myself and friends playing around with some of the props during an individual tour we took before PT was removed and during another tour as it was being converted to SDATHC...

 

img759.jpg

img763.jpg

img764.jpg

img765.jpg

thanks shaggy for these B.T.S. photos

 

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