North Texas Daily

Celebrities, fans experience Marvel first hand

Celebrities, fans experience Marvel first hand

Celebrities, fans experience Marvel first hand
January 20
00:15 2015

Nicholas Friedman / Features Editor

Celebrating the start of its world premiere weekend Thursday night, The Marvel Experience brought fans young and old together to fly through New York as Iron Man or to smash baddies as Hulk.

Employing a combination of motion rides, curved projector screens and video games using Microsoft’s Kinect technology, attendees were immersed in the world of Marvel Comics, a world made popular by the Iron Man, Captain America and Avengers movies of the last five years. The event runs from Jan. 15 to Feb. 1 at Fair Park in Dallas.

The masterminds behind the show, event production company Hero Ventures, held a red carpet premiere party Thursday night to introduce local fans and celebrities to The Marvel Experience.

Co-founders Doug Schaer and Rick Licht were both in attendance, and with Thor’s hammer and Captain America’s shield in hand, they posed for photos and talked to press.

“Rick and I had a silly idea and a blank piece of paper,” Schaer said. “With an elite group of investors and an incomparable creative and technical team, we began to create.”

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Co-Owners of Hero Ventures pose on the red carpet with their wives. From left to right: Doug Schaer, Karen Schaer, Lanisha Cole and Rick Licht.

Schaer said from pen and paper to the premiere, they shortened a five-year odyssey to a year and a half, bringing the project from its conception in May 2013 to production this year.

Many celebrities attended the premiere event with their families as a way to get out and spend time together. Among them were former and current NFL and MLB players, local and national radio hosts and investors looking to see the show and jumpstart their weekends.

“I’m excited for it for my kids,” Mark Cuban, Dallas Mavericks owner and investor on ABC’s Shark Tank, said. “I’m a fan myself but I know that they are over the top fans. The smiles on my kid’s faces make it worth it.”

Cuban confessed to having a favorite superhero as well.

“It’s all about Iron Man,” he said. “I’m an Iron Man fan because, well, he’s kind of me. He does my kind of thing.”

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Tiffany Paisley, left, and Allen Anders play with interactive touch screens at the Marvel Experience on Jan. 15. Their goal was to separate debris from a virtual crash site.

Cuban, his wife Tiffany, and his three children Alexis, Alyssa and Jake spent the night making S.H.I.E.L.D. identification cards, fighting Super Adaptoids (a villain that can replicate any hero’s power) and experiencing the 4-D motion ride.

Heisman Trophy winner and former Oakland Raider Tim Brown told a reporter from ABC  he was amazed at what Hero Ventures had put together.

“My son found out about it and gave my wife the phone number, but she couldn’t come so I’m here,” Brown said. “This is amazing. I’m all about Thor right now, even though I’m holding the hammer and the shield.”

Also in attendance was television host and political commentator Glenn Beck, who said he was a big fan of dreamers and that is what drew him to the premiere.

20_marvel_web6A plethora of Spider-Man cake balls sit atop a pyramid of other superhero-themed baked goods.

“I know the people behind it, and they are big dreamers,” Beck said. “I like people who push the limits, and this is pushing the limits. Whether it can be pulled off or not means you’ll just have to experience it.”

Beck and Cuban posed for photos on the red carpet together before heading into the event.

Sports reporter and former MLB pitcher Mike Bacsik brought his three children, Mary Grace, Jake and Cal to the event where they could rock climb on a moving platform like Spider-Man or take virtual photos with Black Widow, Hawkeye and The Hulk.

“I’m just excited to get in there and be a big kid and play with my kids,” Bacsik said.

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S.H.I.E.L.D. agents-in-training play games powered by touch screens and Microsoft Kinect at the Marvel Experience at Fair Park. Other attractions included a light-gun game and motion ride.

Additional attractions included a 3D light-gun shooting gallery, a Black Widow stealth simulator and Marvel-themed food and drinks.

Those interested in going to The Marvel Experience can purchase either a general admission pass for $37.50, or one of two VIP packages that offer custom merchandise, commemorative photos, valet parking and more.

“We hope fans like it as much as we enjoyed building it,” Schaer said. “We set out to break new ground, and now it’s your turn to be the judge.”

Featured Image: A giant inflatable sign sits inside the entrance of Fair Park. The Marvel Experience will be in Dallas from Jan. 15 – Feb. 1 and offers an interactive superhero experience. Photos by Edward Balusek – Visuals Editor

About Author

Nicholas Friedman

Nicholas Friedman

Nicholas Friedman is the Editor In Chief of the North Texas Daily. In addition, he's had his work published at The Dallas Morning News, GuideLive and the Denton Record-Chronicle.

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