I am back from the hellhole that was Austin, Texas and the that waste of time known as SXSW.
If there was any positive that came out of my keynote address it was that my security guard kicked the Foo Fighters’ asses. Truly the only enjoyable moment of my trip.
This morning, I received an urgent phone call from the new President of Yemen – Adb Rabbuh Mansur Hadi (spell check didn’t get any one of those right). He said things were going very badly at the Manka Fun Park Yemen site.
In fact, he said he believed that several parts of the park which are still under construction are being used as Al-Qaeda training facilities.
My response to him was “Fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck!”
This park has been a disaster ever since we broke ground five years ago.
March 13, 2008 was a glorious day in our quest to expand the Manka Bros. brand to the Middle East.
On the advice of Ethan Rubidoux (President of Consumer Products, Manka Sports, Broadway Manka, Theme Parks and Digital Distribution), we decided NOT to pursue a golden opportunity in Abu Dhabi in which we would have receive full funding for the Manka Fun Park ($1 billion) as well as a generous license fee for our IP going forward.
Mr. Rubidoux explained to me that every studio was building a park in either Abu Dhabi or Dubai and if we were to go it alone in a undeveloped country like Yemen, we would own the market.
While it is true that there isn’t another theme park in Yemen, there is also such negatives as terrorist breeding grounds, a brewing civil war, not many paved roads, a bombed out shell of an airport, etc. etc.
After my phone call with President blah blah blah, I looked back on the file of the project at the beginning and found this fax (right) that I sent from my room at the San’a Nights Hotel.
If there was ever a red flag at the beginning of a project, this was it.
Building a Manka Fun Park in Yemen has been a nightmare from the very beginning.
But we are already $1 billion dollars into construction and can only hope that things improve over the next few months.
President Abd Rubbuh Mansur Hadi has assured me that construction will continue once U.S. drones bomb the terrorist training grounds (near what was supposed to be the Camel Hump Roller Terror in 3D).
He has also assured me that road construction to the park will start eventually.
That’s where it stands. A total horrific failure.
Next time, no one is allowed to change my mind.
But I am not going to fire Ethan Rubidoux. I am just going to give him another awful division to run – he is now also President of our Anti-Piracy Group.
Good luck with that one, Ethan!
For further background on how this fucking project ever received a greenlight, here is a portion of a presentation Lloyd Grohl gave to the Merrill Lynch Mediatainment Conference a few years back.
Why no one under me was smart enough to stop this Titanic of a disaster from happening, I’ll never know.