If you live in Hollywood or are just visiting for the holidays, you may have noticed a bright light in the sky last night. Don't worry, we weren't begin invaded by UFOs. Universal was just making one of it's biggest announcements in years by lighting up Hogwart's Castle to display the new grand opening date for The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. This new part of the park completely devoted to the magic of Harry Potter is set to open its doors at Universal Studios Hollywood on Thursday, April 7, 2016. Which is just a few short months away!
Not only did the date loom magically over Hogwarts Hollywood castle, the eagerly awaited news was launched as part of a new campaign for this theme park attraction. Universal Parks released two videos this morning. One is a stylistic TV commercial for The Wizarding World of Harry Potter designed to sweep guests into the land's magical world through the lens of imagination. It helps build suspense and wonder, immolating a sense of the appeal this franchise has for audiences of all ages. We also get a short teaser featuring Harry Potter actress Evanna Lynch, who plays Luna Lovegood, and art director Alan Gilmore as they light up the castle.
More than five years in the making, and inspired by J.K. Rowling's compelling stories and characters that were brought to life in the Warner Bros. films, The Wizarding World of FRoJcl10mDvVrs|+Harry Potter is being masterfully recreated with impeccable detail as a real-world interpretation at Universal Studios Hollywood. The land will be faithful to the visual landscape of the fiction and films, including Hogwarts castle which will serve as its iconic focal point. From its snow-capped roofs and cobblestone streets to the historic British sensibilities that characterize the whimsical look and feel of the land, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter will transport guests of all ages to the very places they read about in the stories or watched on the silver screen.
Upon entering the land through the archway, Hogsmeade will bustle to life with the same vitality of a quaint local village: merchants hard at work, a train conductor welcoming new arrivals and a pub packed to the gills with hungry patrons, but with the added element of enthusiastic guests intent on experiencing them all, including the land's signature ride, "Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey," and the family outdoor coaster, "Flight of the Hippogriff."
An achievement in pioneering theme park ride technology, "Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey" will make its U.S. debut at Universal Studios Hollywood in hyper-realistic 3D-HD designed to further immerse guests in an already engaging storyline. The multidimensional thrill ride features a groundbreaking robotics ride system, fused with elaborate filmed action sequences and immersive visceral effects. In this updated adaptation of the ride, guests will sport Quidditch-inspired 3D goggles as they venture through journeys experienced by Harry and his friends, spiraling and pivoting 360-degrees along an elevated ride track on a whirlwind adventure of a lifetime.
Also within The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, the enchanting family coaster, "Flight of the Hippogriff™" will open as Universal Studios Hollywood's first outdoor roller coaster. The Wizarding World of Harry Potter will resonate with immense detail, inviting guests to revel in Harry Potter's world with the opportunity to enjoy authentic food and beverage at multiple locations, including Three Broomsticks, and Hog's Head pub, as well as the Magic Neep and Butterbeer carts.
A foray through the shops will add to the authenticity of the land with eight retail venues and locations, including Honeydukes, Ollivanders, Owl Post, Zonko's Joke Shop, Wiseacre's Wizarding Equipment, Dervish and Banges, Gladrags Wizardwear and Filch's Emporium of Confiscated Goods. Currently, Universal Studios Hollywood in-park guests can experience and purchase authentic merchandise, including wands, robes and other collectibles from The Wizarding World of Harry Potter available within the Features Presentation shop, located just inside the theme park's main entry. Take a look at these two new commercials making the exciting announcement.