Joe Rhode Speaks On Wakanda Coming to Animal Kingdom

in Marvel, Walt Disney World

A person sitting on a bench and a view of a city skyline

Credit: Joe Rhode Instagram (left) Marvel (right)

Disney is always changing and evolving, with new things being added to each theme park worldwide all the time. Many Disney IPs have found their way into Disney parks, including Marvel. Now that the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe) has really blown up and expanded through so many storylines, many Marvel fans are looking to see how it can be integrated into more Disney parks.

chadwick boseman statue
Credit: Marvel Studios

Related: Kevin Feige Confirms More ‘Avengers’ Movies to Come

On the West Coast, Disneyland Resort is getting ready to launch Avengers Campus at Disneyland Resort’s Disney California Adventure Park! Because both Disneyland and Disney California Resort are currently closed due to the ongoing pandemic, the Avengers Campus debut has been delayed, but Disney does intend to debut it sometime this year. That being said, Disneyland Guests can still visit the Downtown Disney District (and by extension, Buena Visa Street) for some eating and shopping fun. 

black panther
Credit: Marvel

But, what about adding more Marvel to Walt Disney World Resort? There are licensing agreements that Universal Orlando Resort has with Marvel that could hinder any Marvel-themed lands at Disney World, but that has not stopped Disney fans from wanting to see Wakanda somehow incorporated Animal Kingdom. 

Related: ‘Black Panther 2’: Is Disney Recasting Chadwick Boseman?

Ryan Coogler’s highly popular Black Panther movie, which starred the late Chadwick Boseman as T’Challa, takes place in Wakanda, which many thought would be suited in Animal Kingdom — a park that is not new to IPs, with Pandora: The World of Avatar added in 2017.

Credit: Marvel

Previously, we reported on why Wakanda could fit into Animal Kingdom, that Akon plans to build a real-life Wakanda in the small African country of Senegal, and that even Whoopi Goldberg is all for Disney including the land in one of their parks. Considering Wakanda is a proud African nation, it does make some sense that Disney would include it in a park that has an African section. However, former Imagineer Joe Rhode has seemingly debunked the idea.

Related: ‘Black Panther’ Wakanda Series Coming to Disney+

Credit: Marvel Studios

Theme Park Duo Podcast (@ThemeParkDuo) posed the question to Rhode via Twitter:

@Joe_Rohde how would you feel about Wakanda being added to Animal Kingdom? And if Wakanda, as a themed land, would be added to a Disney Park, which do you think it best fits?

Rhode (@Joe_Rhode) responded:

Hm. Essential questions. How does this subject advance conservation advocacy? Is the IP inherently about animals in nature? Will it compromise the photorealistic look of the park? Marvel/BP, Wakanda is mainly about human concerns, so why at the “animal” park?

It seems that Rhode is not dispelling the possibility of Wakanda one day coming to Disney, but stating that for Animal Kingdom, the land wouldn’t really make sense considering it is not heavily focused on animals.

Do you want to see a Wakanda in a Disney park? Where do you think it would best fit?

in Marvel, Walt Disney World

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