By Scott Fais


Bob Rogers of BRC Imagination Arts has earned a reputation during Expo week for bringing together the legendary planners of the world's most beloved attractions.This year, some of the brightest minds responsible for some of the most notable theme park expansions in the modern era will sit down for a spirited discussion about adapting intellectual properties into fully realized attractions. Star Wars, Guardians of the Galaxy, Harry Potter, and Avatar started as blockbuster films that made a successful jump from cinema screens to immersive environments; some of the creative people behind those projects will be on hand to discuss those endeavors during IAAPA Attractions Expo 2017. Bob Rogers 2017
“Our pre-panel planning discussions have been filled with some of the most thoughtful, intelligent and practical insights ever,” said Rogers. 
On Wednesday at 3:30 p.m. in Room S310, Rogers will again moderate a lively discussion between representatives of Walt Disney Imagineering and Universal Creative during the session: “Legends: Adapting IPs for Parks and Attractions. What works, What doesn’t.”
Together at the same table this year will be Joe Rohde, Thierry Coup, and Scott Trowbridge. The panel of attractions industry giants will talk about how innovation and expertise have created the guest experiences of yesterday, today, and tomorrow.
Joe RohdeRohde, the leader of Imagineering’s creative team for Pandora—The World of Avatar at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, will speak about the industry’s newest destination attraction. Rohde’s portfolio of triumphs also includes “Expedition Everest” at Animal Kingdom and “Guardians of the Galaxy—Mission: BREAKOUT!” at Disney California Adventure.
Coup, senior vice president of the Creative Studio at Universal Creative, leads the development of upcoming attractions from concept through opening at Universal Parks and Resorts. He has played an integral role in shaping blockbuster rides and attractions, including “Transformers: The Ride-3D,” “Skull Island: Reign of Kong,” and The Wizarding World of Harry Potter expansions.
Trowbridge, a portfolio creative executive with Walt Disney Imagineering, will share how Disney integrates Star Wars content across its theme park destinations. Trowbridge previously led WDI Research & Development and oversaw the Blue Sky Design Studio.Scott Trowbridge
“What a rare learning opportunity,” Rogers said. “I’m advising my friends to get there early because the drawing power of these three Legends could fill the hall.”
Also to be remembered this year is Disney Legend and IAAPA Hall of Fame member Marty Sklar. The industry lost a creative genius in late July when Sklar passed at age 83. He was one of few people who was present for the opening of every Disney park, from Anaheim in 1955 to Shanghai in 2016. Sklar was an annual fixture of the Legends panel, where crowds looked forward to his wisdom and stories of working as Walt Disney’s right-hand man.
Rogers, founder and chairman of BRC Imagination Arts, is a notable designer himself. A member of the IAAPA Hall of Fame, his portfolio of innovative attractions traces back to the opening of Epcot and includes designs for clients like Heineken, Ford, The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library, the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, and the European Union.
“Bring a notepad,” Rogers suggested. “I’ve been in this industry four decades yet I was blown away by some of the helpful ideas these three have to share.”
Here is a preview of some of this year’s Legends Panel questions:  
Thierry Coup LR* How do you deal with an IP owner who knows nothing about the attractions medium,
but thinks they do?  
* If you are allowed to select the perfect IP for your attraction, what do you look for?   
* What do you avoid?  What is the true value of an IP?  
* How do you know when things are going well?  
* How do you know when things are going bad? 
* How do you get things back on track?  
* What do you need to remember and what do you need to forget?  




“Legends: Adapting IPs for Parks and Attractions. What works, What doesn’t.”

Wednesday, Nov. 15: 3:30-6:15 p.m. Room: S310ABC