International movie stars, popular athletes and esteemed politicians who call Madame Tussauds Singapore home have some superheroic company. The wax museum has just unveiled its Marvel-themed attraction, which includes three figures with themed displays, and an immersive 4D ride.
inSing paid a visit to the attraction, located on Sentosa island, for the launch of the Marvel Super Heroes display. The event was emceed by stand-up comedian Rishi Budhrani, and since it was the school holidays, many of the invited guests had brought their children along.
“Who doesn’t like Marvel?” asked Alex Ward, head of commercial operations at Madame Tussauds and Images of Singapore. “It appeals to everybody, whether you’re five-years-old, an adult, a local Singaporean or a tourist from overseas.” Ward also observed that with new Marvel movies coming out every few months, the property is “very popular and trendy”.
The three figures are Iron Man, Captain America and Spider-Man. Iron Man and Captain America, based on how they appear in the 2012 movie The Avengers, are new additions to the museum’s collection, while Spider-Man (who isn’t movie-specific and has a comics-based look) has been relocated from elsewhere in the museum to join them.
Sanira Beevi, who oversees the maintenance and and restoration of the statues whenever they sustain damage from overeager visitors, spoke a little about her job. She explained that the standard Madame Tussauds figure has a wax head and a fiberglass body. Iron Man, on the other hand, is made of resin, metal and fibreglass, and is fitted with cables so his eyes, arc reactor and repulsors can light up.
Comedian Rishi Budhrani demonstrating the interactive Iron Man exhibit
“We make sure that the figures look perfect from head to toe,” Beevi said of the morning routine she undertakes before the museum opens for the day. She ensures that “their hands, their face and their ears are intact.”
When Budhrani asked if she talked to the figures, Beevi replied that she did. Budhrani joked about asking the Brad Pitt figure about his breakup with Angelina Jolie – for this writer, the Hollywood supercouple’s split finally hit home when he saw Pitt and Jolie’s wax figures standing on opposite sides of the room. Beevi said she doesn’t ask about the figures’ personal lives, but rather wonders aloud “how his day was, who messed up his hair?”
The 4D ride was developed by Iwerks-SimEx, the same company which created the Marvel Super Heroes 4D attractions at other Madame Tussauds locations around the world. Audiences find themselves attending a presentation by Tony Stark, which is interrupted by a marauding supervillain or two. Tony, taking on his persona of Iron Man, gets some help from his friends, as audiences experience atmospheric effects like spurts of water, jets of air, strobe lights and rumbling seats.
This iteration has been localised: Stark’s facility appears to be situated in the Marina Bay area in Singapore. The ride seemed a little too intense for some of the younger children, but the other kids -and adults- had fun.
When Budhrani asked Ward who his favourite Marvel character was, Ward chose Thor, for “his beautiful hair.”
“He used to have beautiful hair,” Ward corrected himself.