Disney Theme Parks Install Metal Detectors, Halt Sale Of Toy Guns, Ban Costumes On Over 14s

Disney has begun using metal detectors given the increased risk of terrorism and gun violence, according to New York Daily News.

In December 2015, all three major Disney theme parks in Orlando installed metal detectors at the front of their attractions. Disney has not given any indication as to how long it is planning to keep the metal detectors in place.

Disney’s idea was followed by SeaWorld and Universal, with the former saying that it has installed metal detectors for the holidays, and the latter claiming it is only testing them. Disneyland and Universal Studios in Hollywood are also reportedly planning to install metal detectors soon.

After recent terrorist attacks in Paris and California, security measures have been strengthened around the world. With the federal Department of Homeland Security saying that it is concerned terrorist-inspired individuals and homegrown violent extremists could be encouraged to target public events or places (such as Disney theme parks), the public is to expect more police and tighter security at public events and places, as reported by Voice of America.

Disney has recently announced it is halting the sale of toy guns after a man was arrested, attempting to enter the Magic Kingdom with an authentic gun. People 14 and older have also been banned from wearing costumes at Disney events, including at Halloween parties.

Disney visitors have also noticed more police and security guards at the theme parks lately, as well as specially trained dogs patrolling areas that could be of interest of terrorists. The movie theater at Disney Springs, which showed the premiere of Star Wars: The Force Awakens on December 17, 2015, also noticeably featured at least one metal detector at the entrance.

In other Disney news, Walt Disney Co. and Alibaba have announced they are jointly launching an over-the-top content system in China in a bid to skyrocket the sales of movie-related toys and books, as well as trips to Disneyland, according to Wall Street Journal.

A multilayer licensing agreement between Alibaba and Disney allows Alibaba’s online shopping site Tmall to begin pre-sales of the system called DisneyLife. The DisneyLife began shipping on December 28, 2015, according to WSJ citing a Disney spokeswoman.

The DisneyLife, shaped as a Mickey Mouse toy and costing $125, will give access to Disney content: movies, cartoon series and games. The device will also enable the users to plan their visit to the Hong Kong and Shanghai Disneyland theme parks.

The DisneyLife offers a one-year subscription to content, which can be extended after it has expired. However, the charge after the first year has not been announced by Disney.

Walt Disney Co. has begun to actively use its marketing techniques on the Star Wars franchise, while consumers were able to find Star Wars merchandise in pretty much every U.S. store this past holiday season, according to Market Watch.

While an orange toy droid has been warmly received by veteran and new fans of Star Wars, some of the merchandise, such as a bag of oranges with the image of that same droid, left fans unimpressed.

With Star Wars: The Force Awakens, undoubtedly a hit, the two other films of the franchise, which are set to be released in 2017 and 2019, will likely support Disney’s marketing drive.

However, Star Wars fruit and vegetables have been laughed at by consumers for their absurdity. But it doesn’t come as a fresh idea, as Disney claims Marvel and Disney-branded fruits and vegetables have been sold in North America since 2006, according to Market Watch.

[Composite image containing photos by Handout/Getty Images]