The CEO of the soon-to-be Marvel Stadium Michael Green has revealed how the name change came about and what it means for patrons.
As of September 1st, Etihad Stadium is set to be renamed thanks to The Walt Disney Company purchasing the rights for the next eight years.
Green said you can expect a lot of changes to the stadium internally and externally.
“We’re going to start small, but yes there will be a retail presence from the start, but what you will see certainly from the get-go is a really immersive experience,” he told SEN’s Whateley.
“There’s lots of street art going to be up and we’re going to be bringing content and characters to life from day one.
“I think this is going to be a relationship that is so much more than a name on a building, we’re working with Marvel to really deliver an immersive and interactive experience for all patrons coming into the building from September 1st.”
Green explained how the deal eventuated.
“We’ve been in discussions with The Walt Disney Company Australia for just over six months now and it’s just evolved and certainly discussions started at a smaller end, but now they’ve grown and we’ve gotten to the announcement today,” he said.
“To my knowledge, it’s the first time a national entertainment brand has teamed up with a major stadium.”
While AFL will obviously be the primary function for Marvel Stadium, Green said they would remain respectful of teams if they don’t wish to get among the festivities.
This would include things like Marvel themed AFL guernseys or mascots.
“We’re really respectful that those that come into the stadium have their own rights and their own sponsors and we’ll continue to respect that, but what we will be doing is running Marvel content in parallel,” he said.
The CEO explained how big a job the changeover from Etihad will be over the next few months.
“As you can imagine there’s literally thousands of signs that need to be changed, there’s the major signs exterior, but also public transport, Melbourne city council signage so it’s a big project, but we’ve got three months to deliver it,” he said.
The deal means if a final needs to be played at Docklands – the first time Marvel Stadium will be unveiled will be a final.
The most likely scenario for that at this stage would be North Melbourne finishing fifth or sixth and hosting an Elimination Final.