ShowBiz Pizza Place, often shortened to ShowBiz Pizza or ShowBiz, was an American family entertainment center and restaurant pizza chain founded in 1980 by Robert L. Brock and Creative Engineering. It emerged after a separation between Brock and owners of the Chuck E. Cheese’s franchise, Pizza Time Theatre. ShowBiz Pizza restaurants entertained guests through a large selection of arcade games, coin-operated rides and animatronic stage shows.
The two companies became competitors and found early success, partly due to the rise in popularity of arcade games during the late 1970s and early 1980s. The type of animatronics used in the ShowBiz Pizza chain distinguished it from its rivals, which offered many of the same services. Following Pizza Time Theatre’s bankruptcy in 1984, ShowBiz merged with the struggling franchise to settle a former court settlement mandate, forming ShowBiz Pizza Time. By 1992, all ShowBiz Pizza locations were rebranded as Chuck E. Cheese’s.