Part of the NYDSW events we have visited this week was a tour of Madame Tussauds in Times Square. Probably one of the most famous wax museums you may wonder what we were doing there during a digital signage week. Well, the group at OpenEye Global was contacted by Madame Tussauds to help create the new Ghostbuster’s attraction.
From a pure experience part it was not what I was expecting; wax figures of the various characters from the new movie. It was a mix of that plus ghosts that interacted with you, a walk through the Ghostbusters’ offices, and a chance to catch the infamous Slimer in a ghost catcher. At the end you are treated to a surprise that involved projecting on a fog/smoke screen.
From a digital signage and AV perspective it was pretty impressive what they had done. This was a museum installation with triggers, repeatable events, and innovative uses of projection and display technology. When looking into the ghost keepers it is difficult to tell what the projector is actually projecting on. The only part of the attraction I didn’t get was a walk through a Chinese restaurant. There was nothing particularly special. During the tour, however, I discovered that in the new movie the Ghostbusters’ office was above a Chinese restaurant.
The other remarkable story here is the timeline. About a year from conception to completion. According the Madame Tussauds, they came up with the general idea in July of 2015, contacted Sony for the intellectual property, and got to work. OpenEye was brought in around February and the attraction opened July 1, 2016. It’s also important to note that due to the ongoing production of the movie the team working on this attraction wasn’t given a great deal of direction from Sony. They were helped with various ghosts and such but could not guarantee that an element they had provided would not end on the cutting room floor.
Afterward we toured another OpenEye install at the facility; the sports arena. A mini-jumbotron was in the center giving stats on the athletes that were in the space as well as up to date sporting news. There were interactive parts of this attraction as well.
Overall, good hour spent. Madame Tussauds also has a “4D” experience after the walkthrough we did not take part in. It is a virtual reality game where you shoot ghosts and walk around with a proton pack on your back.