Archive for Universal Studios

HARRY POTTER FILM STARS RUPERT GRINT, MATTHEW LEWIS, KATIE LEUNG, BONNIE WRIGHT AND EVANNA LYNCH TO APPEAR AT “A CELEBRATION OF HARRY POTTER” AT UNIVERSAL ORLANDO RESORT

Harry Potter film stars Rupert Grint, Bonnie Wright, Matthew Lewis, Evanna Lynch and Katie Leung will appear at “A Celebration of Harry Potter” – a special event hosted by Universal Orlando Resort and Warner Bros. Consumer Products. Creative talent also set to appear includes Pierre Bohanna, head prop maker for the Harry Potter film franchise, Paul Harris, the world’s only Wand Combat choreographer, and designers Eduardo Lima and Miraphora Mina of MinaLima, who established the visual graphic style of the Harry Potter films.

“A Celebration of Harry Potter” will take place from January 29 – 31, 2016 at Universal Orlando, allowing fans to celebrate all of Harry’s adventures, from the beloved books to the feature films and more. Guests will enjoy three days of incredible experiences, including Q&A sessions with Harry Potter film talent, special panels and demonstrations with creative talent, and access to the Harry Potter Expo – where fans can enjoy the Sorting Hat experience, an interactive mini tour from Warner Bros. Studio Tour London and more.

Guests can also experience Harry Potter’s world for themselves by visiting The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade at Universal’s Islands of Adventure and The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley at Universal Studios Florida. Vacation Package guests and those with a park-to-park ticket will also be able to board the iconic Hogwarts Express and enjoy a unique journey as they travel between King’s Cross Station and Hogsmeade Station.

Access to “A Celebration of Harry Potter” is included with regular theme park admission or with an annual pass, with admission to certain activities being granted on a first-come, first-served basis. While most of the activities for “A Celebration of Harry Potter” will be open to all Universal Orlando park guests and will take place at both Islands of Adventure and Universal Studios Florida theme parks, guests who purchase the exclusive event vacation package will enjoy certain special benefits and reserved sections for the panels and demonstrations.

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JIMMY FALLON TO GET HIS OWN RIDE AT UNIVERSAL ORLANDO RESORT

The host of America’s No. 1 late-night talk show will soon get his very own theme park attraction at Universal Orlando Resort.

In 2017, Jimmy Fallon – host of “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” and one of today’s funniest comedians – will be the star of a brand-new hilarious ride experience at Universal Studios Florida called, “Race through New York Starring Jimmy Fallon.” Guests will enjoy the full “Tonight Show” experience as they’re transported to Studio 6B to race against Jimmy in a crazy adventure that only he could imagine.

Jimmy and his creative team are working closely with Universal to develop the ride’s storyline and bring his vision to life. The experience will seamlessly blend the playful and irreverent world of “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” with the incredible technology and imaginative storytelling for which Universal Orlando is known.

The adventure will begin as guests step right into Studio 6B, where Jimmy will challenge them and their fellow audience members to a white-knuckle race. Guests will twist, turn and laugh as they speed through the streets – and skies – of The Big Apple – encountering everything from iconic landmarks to the deepest subway tunnels – and anything else that comes to Jimmy’s mind.

Race through New York Starring Jimmy Fallon will open in 2017 at Universal Studios Florida and join the incredible lineup of experiences at Universal Orlando Resort. It will replace Twister…Ride It Out, which will close on November 2 to make way for the new experience.

AMC’s “The Walking Dead” Returns to “Halloween Horror Nights”

The nation’s insatiable appetite for AMC’s “The Walking Dead” will continue to terrify Universal Studios Hollywood and Universal Orlando Resort when the most intense moments from season 5 of the critically-acclaimed, Emmy Award®-winning television series take a bite out of “Halloween Horror Nights,” beginning Friday, September 18, 2015.

Attempts to evade the terror of the undead and the inhumane brutality of mankind will be the underlying theme of these mazes as guests navigate authentic three-dimensional recreations of one of television’s most talked about shows, “The Walking Dead.”

Following in the footsteps of “The Walking Dead” cast, guests will begin their journey at the Terminus safe-haven compound, where an unspeakable hunger has consumed the demented souls of those dwelling within. As the chaos ensues, guests will encounter even greater atrocities as they stumble upon dismembered “W” walkers, witness the horror of victims besieged by the living dead, and step onto the loading dock of the Del Arno Food warehouse to face hordes of “W” walkers.

“I couldn’t be more delighted to continue and expand ‘The Walking Dead’ universe with Universal Studios Hollywood and Universal Orlando than by having fans experience some of the most harrowing and suspenseful moments of our show,” said Greg Nicotero, executive producer and special effects makeup supervisor for “The Walking Dead.” “‘Halloween Horror Nights’ is the gold standard to which all other Halloween-themed events try to emulate, so to bring authentic walkers to this event, alongside other horror greats, is the ultimate thrill.”

“We love giving fans of ‘The Walking Dead’ as many ways as possible to experience the series, so we’re thrilled to be collaborating once again with the teams at Universal Studios Hollywood and Universal Orlando on these mazes that really bring the intensity of the show to life,” said Theresa Beyer, senior vice president of promotion, activation and partnerships for AMC. “We’re excited to have fans come face to face with some of the most memorable and shocking scenes of season 5.”

This year, when Universal Studios Hollywood introduces the all-original “The Walking Dead: Wolves Not Far,” it will come to life as the biggest, longest, most gruesome maze ever built at the West Coast destination of “Halloween Horror Nights.” This all-new experience will feature twice as many, never-before-seen walkers and will be situated within an entirely new theme park location.

“Just like the fans who wait anxiously for the next episode or season return of ‘The Walking Dead,’ this phenom of a show has become a ‘Halloween Horror Nights’ tradition and our guests look forward to a new ‘Walking Dead’ maze each year,” said John Murdy, Creative Director at Universal Studios Hollywood and Executive Producer of “Halloween Horror Nights.” “We’re fortunate to have the expertise of the show’s creative team working collaboratively with us to create an authentic living representation of the series, and for fans, our maze experience is the next best thing to living in the aftermath of a zombie apocalypse.”

At Universal Orlando Resort, “The Walking Dead: The Living and the Dead” will feature hordes of walkers and eerily recreate the scenes, settings and terror that guests have seen on their TV screens. The twisted minds of Universal Orlando’s Halloween Horror Nights team are using first-ever tactics to bring the horror of season 5 to life in this year’s maze – even placing guests in the iconic flooded food bank scene where they’ll be surrounded by hundreds of gallons of water as flesh-hungry walkers attack.

“We’ve been fortunate to recreate many horrific moments over the past few years, and as the series raises its own bar every season, so have we with our environments, said Michael Aiello, Director of Creative Development for Universal Orlando’s Entertainment team. “Faithfully representing season 5 has brought with it all-new elements, and we will literally place our guests in the lead role as they escape hordes of walkers.” Universal’s “Halloween Horror Nights” is the ultimate in extreme Halloween events. For more than 20 years, guests from around the world have visited “Halloween Horror Nights” in Orlando and Hollywood to become victims of their own horror movie. Multiple movie-quality haunted houses are constructed throughout the event, inspired by iconic slasher films, hit horror movies and television series or hauntingly real original stories. Numerous scare zones also infiltrate “Halloween Horror Nights,” designed to provoke an unrelenting sense of fear and terrorize guests as they navigate the darkness from one frightening maze to another.

Additional details about Universal’s “Halloween Horror Nights” will be revealed soon. For more information about “Halloween Horror Nights” at Universal Studios Hollywood or Universal Orlando Resort, visit www.HalloweenHorrorNights.com.

To learn more about the all-new “The Walking Dead” maze at “Halloween Horror Nights,” click here.

Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort Announces Guest Room Expansion

Universal Orlando Resort and Loews Hotels & Resorts are excited to announce an expansion of Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort. Four-hundred new rooms will be added to the retro-themed hotel due to its tremendous success and positive guest response since opening in March 2014.

Opening in 2017, the expansion will consist of two additional towers that will be located at the south end of the property, adjacent to the Continental and Americana guest towers.

In addition to the remarkable amenities and on-site benefits, select rooms in the new towers will offer spectacular views of Universal’s Volcano Bay – the resort’s third incredibly immersive park that will forever change the perception of water theme parks when it opens in 2017.

The retro-inspired Cabana Bay is a destination within itself – featuring a stunning design with bold colors and sweeping vistas that transport guests back to a time of relaxation and endless family fun. Cabana Bay guests can experience remarkable amenities, including two zero-entry pools, a waterslide, a lazy river, a 10-lane bowling alley and more. With 900 existing standard guest rooms and 900 existing family suites, guests can choose between two incredible room options. The family suite is a unique room option that sleeps up to six people and includes two queen size beds, a full-size pull-out sofa, a kitchenette area, a sliding partition for privacy, two flat-screen TVs and a compartmentalized bathroom with preparation spaces for three people at once.

Cabana Bay guests also get exclusive benefits only available to on-site hotel guests at Universal Orlando, including Early Park Admission one hour before the theme parks open and complimentary transportation to and from Universal Orlando’s two incredible theme parks and Universal CityWalk.

Additional information will be available in the future. To learn more or to make a reservation, call 1-888-273-1311 or visit www.universalorlando.com. Universal’s Cabana Bay Beach Resort is co-owned and operated by Loews Hotels & Resorts in a joint venture with NBC Universal.

Fast & Furious Thrill Ride Races Onto the Scene at Universal Orlando Resort in 2017

One of the most successful film franchises of all time will soon become one of Universal Studios Florida’s most action-packed ride experiences. Universal Orlando Resort announced today that Fast & Furious: Supercharged will join its incredible lineup of attractions in 2017 – continuing the unprecedented growth of the destination.Food-and-Wine-Classc-300x250-v4

Guests will experience a high-octane journey that fuses an original storyline and incredible ride technology with everything that fans love about the films—popular characters, exhilarating environments, nonstop action and, of course, high-speed cars.

Led by film stars Vin Diesel (Dom Toretto), Dwayne Johnson (Hobbs), Michelle Rodriguez (Letty) and Tyrese Gibson (Roman), guests will feel like part of the “Fast family” as they embark on a thrilling new Fast & Furious adventure. They will be immersed in the underground racing world made famous in the films, explore the headquarters of Toretto and his team and even get to check out some of the supercharged cars they’ve seen on the big screen. Then, guests will board specially designed vehicles and take off on an adrenaline-pumping ride with their favorite stars from the films.

Fast & Furious is Universal Pictures’ highest-grossing film franchise of all time. Since the release of the first film in 2001, the Fast & Furious series has become a cultural phenomenon. Together, all seven installments have grossed nearly $3.9 billion at the worldwide box office. The most recent film, Furious 7, was released in April and became the fifth-highest-grossing film of all time, with more than $1.5 billion in global box office. In addition, Universal Studios Hollywood introduced its own Fast & Furious—Supercharged this summer, which serves as the grand finale to its world famous Studio Tour.

Fast & Furious: Supercharged will replace Beetlejuice Graveyard Revue and Disaster: A Major Motion Picture Starring You! at Universal Studios Florida. Disaster will close on September 8, 2015 and Beetlejuice will close later this year to make way for the new attraction.

More details about Universal Orlando’s Fast & Furious attraction will be released in the future. Stay tuned to www.universalorlando.com for more information.

THIRD ANNUAL “A CELEBRATION OF HARRY POTTER” EVENT COMING TO UNIVERSAL ORLANDO RESORT JANUARY 29-31, 2016

Universal Orlando Resort and Warner Bros. will host the third annual “A Celebration of Harry Potter,” a special gathering of Harry Potter fans from around the globe. The three-day weekend event will take place January 29 – 31, 2016 and will feature an array of experiences.

All general admission park guests will have the opportunity to:

·         Attend Q&A sessions with Harry Potter film talent (complete talent lineup will be announced at a later date)

·         Experience and participate in the interactive and unique exhibits at the “A Celebration of Harry Potter” Expo, featuring Harry Potter brand partners such as Warner Bros. Studio Tour London, Pottermore, Scholastic, MinaLima, and Harry Potter: The Exhibition

·         Enjoy special panels and demonstrations regarding various aspects of the Harry Potter stories

Additionally, guests will be able to visit The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade at Universal’s Islands of Adventure and The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley at Universal Studios Florida. Plus, ride the Hogwarts Express between the two lands with a park-to-park ticket.

Special vacation packages, including annual passholder packages, will go on sale at noon EST on August 19. On-site hotel packages start at $235 per adult per night and include exclusive benefits such as special guest access to the “A Celebration of Harry Potter” Expo, admission to a private evening reception in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter and special guest access to panels and demonstrations. Packages also include three-night hotel accommodations, three-day park-to-park tickets to both Universal Studios Florida & Universal’s Islands of Adventure, a special welcome parcel and more. For complete package details, visit www.universalorlando.com/celebration.

Comcast Invests by the Billion in Theme Parks, Hogwarts and All

The Universal theme park chain was the last thing Comcast was interested in when it bought NBCUniversal four years ago. Endless upkeep? Endless spending on new rides? Endless anxiety about public safety?

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New NBC Sports Grill & Brew Joins Impressive Roster At Universal Orlando’s CityWalk

The world’s first-ever NBC Sports Grill & Brew is coming to Universal CityWalk – bringing an entirely new level of sports-dining experience. Opening this fall, the all-new restaurant is designed to reflect the excellence and excitement of NBC Sports’ award-winning coverage.

The new restaurant will combine a sophisticated and stylish setting with wall-to-wall sports coverage, a specially created menu that includes all your favorites and more – and an amazing beer selection.

A massive HD stadium screen more than 100-feet wide will tower over guests as they enter the restaurant. Searchlights will span the sky. And then – as guests enter – the real MVP experience will begin. Food will be prepared on open kettle grills set where everyone can watch the action. And every fan will have the best seat in the house thanks to nearly 100 HD TV screens that will be playing a constant stream of live sports content and in-depth sports coverage.

And no sports dining experience is complete without the perfect beer. NBC Sports Grill & Brew features more than 100 unique selections, ranging from craft beers to regional brews to an exclusive draft you can only find at the restaurant.

NBC Sports Grill & Brew continues the epic growth at Universal CityWalk. The entertainment complex recently underwent a historic expansion that included the opening of eight new venues in just one year. The two-tiered, 30-acre complex features a collection of themed restaurants, shops and nightclubs, including The Cowfish, VIVO Italian Kitchen, Emeril’s Restaurant Orlando, Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville, Antojitos Authentic Mexican Food and Rising Star.

NBC Sports Grill & Brew will be located right before the entrance of Universal Studios Florida, next to Element. For more information about Universal CityWalk, visit: https://www.universalorlando.com.

The ‘Wizarding World of Harry Potter’ Coming to Universal Studios Hollywood in 2016

The countdown to “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™” begins today as Universal Studios HollywoodSM announces the Spring 2016 arrival of the West Coast’s most anticipated entertainment experience and the introduction of the land’s signature attraction, “Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey” in hyper-realistic 3D-HD.

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More than five years in the making, and inspired by J. K. Rowling’s compelling stories and characters and the Warner Bros. films, “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter” at Universal Studios Hollywood will bring guests the same authenticity and storytelling found at Universal Orlando Resort and Universal Studios Japan and is expected to attract Harry Potter fans and visitors from all over the globe for decades to come.

Visitors will be swept into a fully immersive themed land that brings the Harry Potter fiction and films to life with impeccable detail and precision. “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter” will be faithful to the visual landscape of the fiction and films, including Hogwarts castle which will serve as its iconic focal point.

“Harry Potter is an exhilarating multi-generational global phenomenon that has captivated the world’s attention across every one of its mediums, from books and movies to exhilarating theme park adventures,” said Larry Kurzweil, President of Universal Studios Hollywood. “With its imminent arrival to The Entertainment Capital of L.A., Universal Studios Hollywood is thrilled to bring our guests a new, compelling experience of ‘The Wizarding World of Harry Potter’ as we embark on this next chapter in our storied history.”

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King Kong Roars to Life at Universal Orlando Resort in Groundbreaking New Attraction

King Kong will rule at Universal Orlando Resort next year in the groundbreaking attraction, “Skull Island: Reign of Kong.”

The new attraction will open in the summer of 2016 at Universal’s Islands of Adventure – and will be an intense, all-new adventure brought to life in a dramatically themed environment. Skull Island: Reign of Kong will pull guests into a powerfully told story where they become part of the next generation of the Kong legend.

Skull Island Reign Of Kong universal orlando
It begins as guests are transported deep into a wild and mysterious world, where their mission is to discover creatures of unknown origin – but where they are soon fighting for their own survival. Their journey will take them through an ancient temple inhabited by hostile natives, a perilous jungle ruled by prehistoric creatures, a foreboding underworld of caves concealing unspeakable terrors – and face-to-face with the colossal Kong himself.

Universal Creative is working closely with Peter Jackson, famed director of 2005’s blockbuster movie, “King Kong,” to immerse guests in this incredible adventure.

“King Kong is a Hollywood movie legend and a huge part of both our history and our future,” said Mike West, Executive Producer, Universal Creative. “He gives us the opportunity to tap into everything that makes our film history so special and everything that makes our theme park attractions so spectacular. We can’t wait to bring him to life in such an epic way.”

Known as “the eighth wonder of the world,” Kong has been called “the experience for which movies were invented.” Since first appearing on screen in 1933, “King Kong” has been re-made twice – each time on a tremendous scale – earning seven Oscar and three Golden Globe nominations.

And now – in even grander and more realistic form – the Kong story continues to grow. “Skull Island: Reign of Kong” will open in the summer of 2016. More details about the mega-attraction will be released over time. Visit www.universalorlando.com/ReignofKong for more information.