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Marvel Expanding Into Theme Parks, Films

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David Jones reports that comic powerhouse Marvel has entered into a deal for major a theme park in Dubai.

Marvel Entertainment Inc. said Tuesday that it has teamed up Al Ahli Group to develop a $1 billion theme park in Dubai based on Marvel superheroes, including Spider-Man, The Incredible Hulk and The Fantastic Four.

This must mean that Universal’s theme park rights to some Marvel characters is not worldwide.

The agreement marks the first major deal completed by Marvel Studios’ new Chairman David Maisel, who was named to the post earlier this month amid a shakeup of the company’s feature film business. Michael Helfant, who had been president and chief operating officer of Marvel Studios, was ousted.

Marvel is making a big push to become a stand-along film studio after years of collaborating with established studios like 20th Century Fox.