Marvel Character Dining Returns to Islands of Adventure – Shouldn’t Disney World Offer the Same?

Fans of Marvel Comics/Marvel Entertainment and Universal’s Islands of Adventure theme park will be excited to hear the news reported by Orlando Informer: Marvel character dining is returning to a Park restaurant.

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Frequent Guests to Islands of Adventure’s Marvel Super Hero Island (not ‘Marvel Superhero Island,’ contrary to belief) are probably familiar with the Captain America Diner and Cafe 4, but did you know about the Marvel Character Dinner?

Marvel Character Dinner is located in Cafe 4, and it gives Guests the opportunity to take a photo with a Marvel super hero such as Cyclops, Wolverine, Spider-man, Captain America, Storm, and Rouge.

But anyone who’s seen a recent Marvel Cinematic Universe movie or series is probably wondering, “Why doesn’t Walt Disney World have its own version?”

Universal Islands of Adventure

Credit: Universal

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Islands of Adventure’s Marvel Super Hero Island is home to attractions such as the Incredible Hulk Coaster, the Amazing Adventures of Spider-man, and more. While Walt Disney World’s EPCOT may have Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind and some merchandise, there is little representation of Marvel Entertainment in the Parks compared to Disneyland.

Spider-Man Avengers Campus

Credit: Disney

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This is due to the incredibly specific terms of the agreements Marvel has made with Universal Studios and the Walt Disney Company, as well as the timeline. In short, Universal Studios’ deal with Marvel came first, and it states that the theme park was allowed permission to create a Marvel-themed land “in perpetuity.” As in indefinitely until either party dissolves the agreement.

When the Walt Disney Company purchased Marvel, this contract was and is still valid. Precisely enough, the agreement states that Universal owns the rights to the Marvel property they are currently using “for all areas East of the Mississippi River.”

universal studios

Credit: Universal

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That’s why Disneyland has an entire Marvel-themed land while Walt Disney World has one attraction. In actuality, the rights are quite convoluted (InsideUniversal.net has an excellent guide breaking the situation down), but in short: don’t expect to see any of the superheroes in Islands of Adventure at Walt Disney World.

If it already exists on Universal Studios’ property, it won’t be making its way to the Disney Parks.

About Isabella Reimer

Isabella Reimer grew up visiting Walt Disney World and relocated to Central Florida to be even closer to The Most Magical Place on Earth. She earned her Bachelor’s from Florida State University, where she studied Creative Writing and Women’s Studies. Her biggest hobby is bonding with the ikran at Avatar Flight of Passage, and her retirement plan includes becoming the 1,000 Happy Haunt of the Haunted Mansion.