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The Wizarding World of Harry Potter Getting Nighttime Light Show

Universal City, CA, May 18, 2017 – Beginning June 23, guests are invited to see “The Wizarding World of Harry PotterTM” in a whole new light when Universal Studios Hollywood introduces its all-new “The Nighttime Lights at Hogwarts TM Castle,” featuring a dazzling light projection experience against the backdrop of Hogwarts™ School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

As night falls on Hogsmeade village, “The Nighttime Lights at Hogwarts Castle” will shine brightly with an awe-inspiring spectacle that showcases the four houses of Hogwarts: Gryffindor, Ravenclaw, Hufflepuff and Slytherin that culminates with awesome beams of lights that fan into the night sky.

The colorful state-of-the-art light display and special effects projection, designed to dance across the stunning Hogwarts castle, will be accompanied by a special musical arrangement created by Academy Award-winning composer John Williams based on his original scores composed for the film series. The musical arrangement that will emanate in a surround sound environment was conducted by prolific arranger William Ross and recorded by the London Symphony Orchestra in London.

This new summertime feature will take place multiple times a night during its run.  Live rehearsals with annual pass previews and very limited guest access will begin in June in preparation for the June 23 grand opening.

Inspired by J.K. Rowling’s compelling stories and characters that were brought to life in the Warner Bros. films, “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter” at Universal Studios Hollywood is a masterful recreation, faithful to the visual landscape of the fiction and films, including as its iconic focal point, Hogwarts castle.

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” transports guests of all ages to the very places they watched on the silver screen.

The architecturally stunning land also includes the incredibly captivating and highly acclaimed “Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey” thrill ride, now enhanced with 4K-HD and ride film projecting at an astounding rate of 120 frames-per-second for an even more immersive glimpse into Harry Potter’s world, as well as Flight of the Hippogriff™,” Universal Studios Hollywood’s first outdoor family coaster.

“The Wizarding World of Harry Potter” resonates with immense detail, inviting guests to revel in J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World with the opportunity to enjoy authentic food and beverages 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 adds 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.

More information is available at www.UniversalStudiosHollywood.com. Join the conversation online using #WizardingWorldHollywood. Like Universal Studios Hollywood on Facebook and follow @UniStudios on Instagram and Twitter.

Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey 4K Upgrade Review

The good people over at Universal Studios Hollywood’s PR team allowed us entry into the park to check out the upgraded Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey attraction located within the park’s Wizarding World of Harry Potter area. Recently, the ride’s projection system was upgraded once again – this time, to ultra-high definition 4K resolution and a higher frame rate of 120 FPS! You might recall that, originally, the attraction opened with a 3D projection system that relied on riders to wear special 3D goggles. The ride experience left something to be desired, so the park smartly transitioned the ride back to 2D. The standard definition version of the ride was immensely-fun, but you could see a lot of blur in the image quality of the projection system. This is party due to the fact that the ride video is rear projected onto curved screens. So with the 4K upgrade, I just had to come out and experience the ride again – at least it would provide a good excuse for drinking more butterbeer!

Arriving at the park early, one of the Universal Studios PR team members escorted us onto the attraction and actually rode it with us as she had yet to experience it for herself. The ride was a blast and the 4K update is very noticeable, especially if you rode it prior to the upgrade. The video is still a bit blurry, but nowhere near the degree it was before and it is a lot easier to track the action on the screen thanks to the enhanced frame rate. I didn’t notice any other upgrades to the ride aside from the new projection system, but that’s not a bad thing as the ride is pretty amazing as it is.

After riding Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey, we went over to the Three Broomsticks in Hogsmeade and had a big American breakfast plate with eggs and bacon. Of all the dining experiences inside Universal Studios Hollywood, this restaurant has consistently been the best since its launch a year ago. Their variety of food – from breakfast platters to shepard’s pie to so much more is prepared well and features great taste. Unfortunately, I did find out that the hot butterbeer which wowed me during the Winter is no more. It appears to be a seasonal beverage and I can’t wait for the end of the year to see it come back. In the meantime, I will “make do” with my favorite frosty drink, the frozen butterbeer.

Universal Studios Hollywood is open daily. Check out their official website for ticket information and more.

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Universal Studios Hollywood Chinese Lunar New Year 2017

Universal Studios Hollywood is celebrating the Chinese Lunar New Year with a bang. In their central plaza you will find all manner of costumed characters from Universal IPs, such as Kung-Fu Panda, Curious George, and a whole lot more (my personal favorite was Woody Woodpecker). You will even find the evil Decepticon known as Megatron, arch-enemy of the Autobots, speaking Mandarin to guests in celebration of the holiday. Finally at the plaza area,  you will find an assortment of Chinese-inspired foods and snacks, as well as be able to write your own message of hope to add to the beautiful, blossom covered archways. I give a ton of kudos to the park designers as the plaza area is beautiful – they did a terrific job.

On the day we went, it was raining cats and dogs, the height of the most recent Southern California storm system, but we didn’t let that stop us. We purchased some Wizarding World of Harry Potter themed rain ponchos and had a terrific time. The lines and crowds were short, allowing us to get into anything we desired within a few minutes of waiting. The world famous Universal Studios Tour was even considerate and had vinyl rain flaps deployed on each side of the trams (although for us in the front corner, the rain came in anyway, lol).

I highly recommend checking out the Wizarding World of Harry Potter in the rain and wind. Nothing says real English weather like gloomy clouds and downpour, and it adds to the overall effect of being in Hogsmeade. Also, Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey has returned to its pre-eye strain 2D film mode. I couldn’t ride this enough! The goggles and 3D film during the attraction’s opening were not well-received and the park listed to its guests. The 2D ride film is plenty immersive, and waiting just a couple minutes to ride meant we could go on as many times as we could go through the rain to get back in, lol. It is not uncommon for the ride to have wait times in excess of 60 minutes – yet we rode the attraction seven times in a row! Thank you sweet, sweet rain!

I use any reason I can to get out to Universal Studios Hollywood. It is a terrific theme park and truly a Southern California treasure, reflecting our Hollywood history and providing hope for its future. The fact that the park is also culturally-progressive and forward-thinking enough to pay tribute to our Chinese American brothers and sisters with the Chinese Lunar New Year celebration is a testament to that way of thinking and yet another reason for us all to come together in unity. Get your butts out to Universal Studios and celebrate with them!

You can get ticket information and more at USH’s official website.

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Mayor Eric Garcetti Announces Record Year for LA at Universal Studios Hollywood

LOS ANGELES — Los Angeles’ economy continued to surge in 2016, breaking all-time records for tourism, travelers at LAX, and cargo volume shipped through the Port of Los Angeles.  

Mayor Eric Garcetti announced the new records today at Universal Studios Hollywood’s “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter,” alongside Councilmember Paul Krekorian, and leaders from the Los Angeles Tourism & Convention Board, Los Angeles World Airports, and the Port of Los Angeles.  

“This is L.A.’s moment. Los Angeles is welcoming more visitors to our city and passengers through our airport than ever before, our nation-leading Port is making L.A. an even more critical trade gateway to the world, and we are experiencing the kind of job growth that we haven’t seen in a generation,” said Mayor Garcetti. “We’re working hard to keep up the momentum, by going after and landing one-of-a-kind attractions like the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art. And here’s the best part: there’s even more opportunity on the horizon, and an even bigger role for L.A. to play on the world stage.” 

According to the Los Angeles Tourism & Convention Board, the city welcomed 47.3 million visitors in 2016 — an increase of nearly 4 percent over 2015. It marked the sixth consecutive year of record-breaking tourism growth, and moved L.A. closer to Mayor Garcetti’s goal of welcoming 50 million visitors a year by 2020.

“Los Angeles continues to establish itself as one of the most desirable destinations in the world for tourists and business people alike,” said Councilmember Paul Krekorian, chair of the Budget and Finance, and Job Creation committees. “Whether it’s the sunny beaches and scenic landscape, our diverse communities and cuisines, our rapidly growing technology sector or the lure of movie magic as the global entertainment capital, Los Angeles has something to offer everyone who visits. We’re making tremendous investments into LA’s future to ensure it grows into an even greater metropolis that is transit and business friendly, on the cutting edge of innovation and an unparalleled hub of diversity.”

“Global desire for the Los Angeles experience is at an all-time high and we are humbled to welcome a record 47.3 million visitors,” said Ernest Wooden Jr., president and CEO of the Los Angeles Tourism & Convention Board. “There’s never been a better time to discover Los Angeles and we invite travelers from across the globe to immerse themselves in our thriving culinary scene, unparalleled cultural experiences and celebrated only-in-L.A. attractions.” 

LAX also broke its record for total number of passengers for the third consecutive year. In 2016, 80.9 million travelers passed through the airport, an increase of more than 8 percent over last year. Of those travelers, 22.6 million — or more than 28 percent — were international. 

“We are creating an airport experience that makes a great first and last impression of Los Angeles,” said Los Angeles World Airports Chief Executive Officer Deborah Flint. “Our focus is on delivering a gold-standard airport that shines with the top-rated airports around the world, by transforming LAX with a $14 billion investment that will bring it into the modern era for today’s traveler.” 

The Port of Los Angeles broke a record of its own, moving more cargo in 2016 than ever in its 100-year history. The Port shipped 8.8 million Twenty-Foot Equivalent Units (TEUs) last year, the most ever by a port in the Western Hemisphere. 

“I salute the strong collaboration among the labor workforce, our terminals and the many stakeholders in the supply chain who kept cargo moving speedily and efficiently during a record-breaking year,” said Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka. “To handle this much volume without congestion issues is an extraordinary accomplishment and bodes well for the future of the San Pedro Bay complex.” 

The records come amid an unprecedented period of growth across L.A.’s economy. Since Mayor Garcetti took office in 2013, the City has created more than 140,000 new jobs, cut the unemployment rate in half, and permitted more than 150,000 new businesses. The economy has come all the way back from the Great Recession, and L.A. now has more jobs than it did at the peak before the civil unrest of 1992.  

The City has also added numerous high-profile attractions in recent years. Just yesterday, Mayor Garcetti announced that Los Angeles has been chosen as home the new Lucas Museum of Narrative Art — adding another cultural treasure to L.A.’s collection of renowned civic institutions. In addition, the tourism sector has benefited from new investments in attractions like “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter” at Universal Studios Hollywood. 

“With Comcast NBCUniversal’s unprecedented $1.5 billion investment in the company’s core businesses of production and tourism, Universal Studios Hollywood has achieved record-breaking attendance, created thousands of jobs and had a positive impact on the region’s economy,” said Ron Meyer, Vice Chairman, NBCUniversal.   

“The ambitious Epic Transformation of our property has had a remarkable effect on our theme park, and as a major entertainment destination we are thrilled that Universal Studios Hollywood has played such a significant role in driving global tourism to Southern California,” said Karen Irwin, President & COO, Universal Studios Hollywood.  “With the popularity of such signature attractions as our behind-the-scenes Studio Tour and ‘The Wizarding World of Harry Potter,’ Universal Studios Hollywood makes the elusive world of movie-making magic accessible to our guests and it’s our pleasure to invite them to peek behind the velvet curtain for these truly authentic experiences.”

Universal Studios Hollywood Announces Chinese Lunar New Year Celebration

Universal City, CA, January 10, 2017 The “Year of the Rooster” gets a wake-up call from DreamWorks Animation’s Kung Fu Panda stars, Po and Tigress when they make their first-ever appearance during Universal Studios Hollywood’s annual Lunar New Year. The event is included in the price of theme park admission and will take place from Saturday, January 21 to Sunday, February 5, 2017.

A highlight of the time-honored tradition will mark the return of the Mandarin-speaking MEGATRON who will engage guests in conversation characteristic of his persona as the leader of the DECEPTICON.  MEGATRON – an ominous 12-foot-tall sentient robot – is one of the stars of Universal Studios’ award-winning thrill ride, “Transformers™:  The Ride-3D.” Also joining the festivities will be theme park characters, Curious George and Woody Woodpecker, who will don festive Chinese attire.

Lunar New Year comes to life within Universal Plaza, situated at the heart of the theme park where guests will be ushered into the polygon-shaped piazza, under a curtain of customary red Chinese lanterns and a stunning plum blossom arch. Inside they will encounter a dozen lampposts, each featuring banners of the twelve zodiac animal signs along with three symbolic attributes. A selection of Asian-inspired treats will also be available, including pastries decorated with the Chinese characters for “Rooster” and “Fortune.”

Year-round, Universal Studios Hollywood’s signature Studio Tour offers guests a revealing look at an authentic movie and television studio in select languages, including Mandarin.  Expertly-trained Mandarin-speaking tour guides provide insight into the world of movie-making magic as guests enjoy a front row seat and behind-the-scenes access to one of the largest production studios in the world.  In-language park maps are also available for guests.

As part of the celebratory Lunar New Year event, guests are also invited to toast the “Year of the Rooster” at Universal CityWalk’s newest restaurant, Dongpo Kitchen, serving upscale and modern Sichuan cuisine. Inspired by China’s premiere restaurant Meizhou Dongpo and its renowned and innovative owners, Chef Mr. Wang and his wife Mrs. Liang, Dongpo Kitchen, features the comforts of a casual dining environment with both indoor and al fresco seating and caters to an eclectic palate with a variety of signature dishes ranging from Dongpo fried noodles, roasted duck salad, spicy chicken to specialty beverage shakes such as dragon well green tea and roasted oolong milk tea.

More information is available at www.UniversalStudiosHollywood.com. Mandarin-speaking guests can learn more about the Lunar New Year event at www.ush.cn.  Information is also available on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube and Weibo @好莱坞环球影城.

For California residents, Universal Studios Hollywood’s recently introduced California Neighbor Pass is chock full of benefits, enabling guests to choose any day for their first visit and return to enjoy Universal Studios Hollywood for select days and weekends. Discounts on general admission tickets for friends and family to the theme park also include access to special events, such as Lunar New Year.

Universal Studios Hollywood is The Entertainment Capital of L.A. and includes a full-day, movie-based theme park and Studio Tour. As a leading global entertainment destination, Universal Studios Hollywood delivers highly themed immersive lands that translate to real-life interpretations of iconic movie and television shows. Recent additions include “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter ™” which features a bustling Hogsmeade village and such critically-acclaimed rides as “Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey” and Flight of the Hippogriff™, Universal Studios Hollywood’s first outdoor rollercoaster.  Other immersive lands include “Despicable Me Minion Mayhem” and “Super Silly Fun Land” as well as “Springfield,” hometown of America’s favorite TV family, located adjacent to the award-winning “The Simpsons RideTM.” and the all-new “The Walking Dead” daytime attraction.  The world-renowned Studio Tour is Universal Studios Hollywood’s signature attraction, inviting guests behind-the-scenes of the world’s biggest and busiest movie and television studio where they can also experience such authentic and immersive thrill rides as “Fast & Furious—Supercharged.” The destination also features the Universal CityWalk entertainment, shopping and dining complex, including the Universal CityWalk Cinemas and the “5 Towers” state-of-the-art outdoor concert venue.

A Magical LAIKA Experience Back at Universal Studios Hollywood

LOS ANGELES – December 8, 2016 – By overwhelming popular demand, acclaimed animation studio LAIKA will present a return holiday engagement of “From Coraline to Kubo: A Magical LAIKA Experience” from December 21, 2016 to January 15, 2017 at Universal Studios Hollywood. This special event will take place within the theme park’s Globe Theatre and is included in the price of admission.

The innovative, interactive Experience offers an up-close look at the artistry and imagination behind LAIKA’s groundbreaking 10-year filmmaking history, which includes the Academy Award-nominated films Coraline (2009), ParaNorman (2012) and The Boxtrolls (2014), as well as this year’s acclaimed Kubo and the Two Strings, recently named Best Animated Feature of 2016 by the National Board of Review, Washington DC Area Film Critics Association and Atlanta Film Critics Society and nominated for ten Annie Awards (including Best Animated Feature). The exhibition previously debuted this summer at Universal Studios Hollywood and was met with tremendous success, enjoyed by thousands of guests.

“From Coraline to Kubo: A Magical LAIKA Experience” showcases the evolution of LAIKA’s unique blend of handcrafted stop-motion animation and visual effects magic that will once again come to life in four imaginatively themed rooms. The extensive display of original sets, puppets and props will immerse guests in their singular, fantastical worlds.

“We’re thrilled to be able to return to Universal Studios Hollywood after our successful summer debut of the LAIKA Experience,” said Travis Knight, LAIKA’s President & CEO who recently made his directorial debut with Kubo and the Two Strings. “There’s nothing like experiencing the LAIKA wonderland up close and personal. We’ve likened it to Santa’s Workshop with a much weirder bunch of elves. Not everyone can come to our studio just outside Portland, so we’re once again taking that experience to our fans so they can become immersed in our creative process and witness how the artists bring the films to life.”

“The LAIKA Experience was a phenomenal success for our guests this past summer and we are excited to welcome its return to our theme park,” said Xiomara Wiley, Executive Vice President, Marketing & Sales, Universal Studios Hollywood. “Partnering with Focus Features and LAIKA on this exhibit is a perfect example of how we entertain our guests with exclusive behind-the-scenes movie magic.”

Universal Studios Hollywood is a world-class theme park entertainment destination providing guests with a full day experience enjoying today’s most compelling rides and attractions, and behind-the-scenes Studio Tour.  From the recently opened “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™,” “The Walking Dead” daytime attraction, and “Despicable Me Minion Mayem,” Universal Studios Hollywood creates immersive worlds based on popular movies and television shows.  For California residents, Universal Studios’ must-have California Neighbor Pass is chock full of benefits, that enables guests to choose any day for their first visit and return to enjoy Universal Studios Hollywood for more than 200 select days and weekends for only $119. Discounts on general admission tickets for friends and family to the theme park also include access to special events such as the “From Coraline to Kubo: A Magical LAIKA Experience” limited-time experience.

Fueled by the vision of President & CEO Travis Knight, feature film animation studio LAIKA celebrated its 10th anniversary in December 2015. Located just outside Portland, Oregon, LAIKA was awarded a Science and Technology Oscar plaque in recognition of its innovation in 3D printing in 2016. Its three films, Coraline (2009), ParaNorman (2012), and The Boxtrolls (2014) were all nominated for Oscars® and PGA Awards as Outstanding Animated Film. Coraline earned Golden Globe, BAFTA, and Critics’ Choice nominations, and was named one of the year’s 10 Best Films by the American Film Institute (AFI). ParaNorman (2012) garnered BAFTA, Critics’ Choice, and GLAAD Media Award nomination and won two Annie Awards (the animation community’s Oscars equivalent) and was cited as the year’s best animated film by 14 critics’ groups. The Boxtrolls also earned Critics’ Choice and Golden Globe Award nominations and 13 Annie Award nominations, more than any other film that year. Kubo and the Two Strings, which marks the directorial debut of Travis Knight, was released by Focus Features on August 19th, 2016.

Focus Features (www.focusfeatures.com) acquires and produces specialty films for the global market, and holds a library of iconic movies from fearless filmmakers. Current and upcoming domestic releases from Focus include Tom Ford’s romantic thriller Nocturnal Animals, starring Amy Adams and Jake Gyllenhaal, winner of the Grand Jury Prize at the 2016 Venice International Film Festival; the real-life story of heroism The Zookeeper’s Wife, directed by Niki Caro and starring Jessica Chastain; Colin Trevorrow’s The Book of Henry, starring Naomi Watts, Jaeden Lieberher, and Jacob Tremblay; Sofia Coppola’s The Beguiled, starring Colin Farrell, Nicole Kidman, Kirsten Dunst, and Elle Fanning; the action spy thriller The Coldest City, directed by David Leitch and starring Charlize Theron and James McAvoy; Stephen Frears’ Victoria and Abdul, starring Dame Judi Dench as Queen Victoria; Joe Wright’s Darkest Hour, starring Gary Oldman as Winston Churchill; the untitled new film from Paul Thomas Anderson starring Daniel Day-Lewis; J.A. Bayona’s visually spectacular drama A Monster Calls, starring Sigourney Weaver, Felicity Jones, Lewis MacDougall, and Liam Neeson, which world-premiered at the 2016 Toronto International Film Festival; and Jeff Nichols’ Loving, based on the love story of Richard and Mildred Loving, portrayed by Joel Edgerton and Ruth Negga, which world-premiered at the 2016 Cannes International Film Festival.

Focus Features and Universal Pictures are part of NBC Universal, one of the world’s leading media and entertainment companies in the development, production, and marketing of entertainment, news, and information to a global audience. NBC Universal owns and operates a valuable portfolio of news and entertainment television networks, a premier motion picture company, significant television production operations, a leading television stations group, and world-renowned theme parks. NBC Universal is a subsidiary of Comcast Corporation.

Universal Studios Hollywood is The Entertainment Capital of L.A. and includes a full-day, movie-based theme park and Studio Tour. As a leading global entertainment destination, Universal Studios Hollywood delivers highly themed immersive lands that translate to real-life interpretations of iconic movie and television shows. Recent additions include “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter ™” which features a bustling Hogsmeade village and such critically-acclaimed rides as “Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey” and “Flight of the Hippogriff™,” Universal Studios Hollywood’s first outdoor rollercoaster. Other immersive lands include “Despicable Me Minion Mayhem” and “Super Silly Fun Land” as well as “Springfield,” hometown of America’s favorite TV family, located adjacent to the award-winning “The Simpsons Ride TM.” and the all-new “The Walking Dead” daytime attraction. The world-renowned Studio Tour is Universal Studios Hollywood’s signature attraction, inviting guests behind-the-scenes of the world’s biggest and busiest movie and television studio where they can also experience such authentic and immersive thrill rides as “Fast & Furious—Supercharged.” The destination also features the Universal CityWalk entertainment, shopping and dining complex, including the Universal CityWalk Cinemas and the “5 Towers” state-of-the-art outdoor concert venue.

Holiday Feast and More Comes to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter

December 5, 2016 – This just in! Please see below for our newest seasonal offering at Three Broomsticks in “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter” at Universal Studios Hollywood:

Celebrate the holiday season at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™! Come now to complement your cup of hot Butterbeer™ with the new Holiday Feast at Three Broomsticks™! Sample treats like a gourmet Butternut Squash soup and a new dessert called Eton Mess all this month.

  • Holiday Feast – The first course will be a Butternut squash soup with crème fraiche. The main course will be a combination of Beef Wellington served with a tarragon aioli sauce & oven roast turkey served with gravy, sage stuffing, roast sweet potato, dried cherries with winter vegetables.
  • Specialty Chicken Sandwich- Honey Ale marinated baked chicken breast with melted cheddar cheese, Applewood bacon, roasted roma tomatoes, lettuce, and béarnaise sauce on a toasted brioche bun.
  • Eton Mess (Dessert)- A traditional English Dessert consisting of a mixture of strawberries, broken meringue, and whipped heavy cream.

Interactive Nintendo Areas Coming to Universal Studios

Kyoto, Japan and ORLANDO, Florida (November 29, 2016) – Imagine the fun of stepping into a larger-than-life Nintendo adventure.  Gigantic Piranha Plants spring to life.  Question blocks, power-ups and more surround you.  And Mario and all his friends are there to pull you into a brand-new world.

You will enter an entire realm filled with iconic Nintendo excitement, gameplay, heroes and villains.   And it is coming to three Universal theme parks around the globe.

The creative visionaries behind Nintendo’s legendary worlds and characters are working together with the creative teams behind Universal’s blockbuster theme park attractions.  Their goal: to bring the characters, action and adventure of Nintendo video games to life within Universal theme parks.  And to do so in new and innovative ways that capture what makes them so special.  All of the adventure, fun and whimsy you experience through a screen will now be all around you – in breathtakingly authentic ways.

  • Nintendo-themed areas are coming to Universal Studios Japan, Universal Orlando Resort and Universal Studios Hollywood.
  • These will be expansive, immersive and interactive.  They will be highly themed and authentic environments filled with multiple attractions, shops and restaurants.
  • Guests will feel as if they are playing inside their favorite games – this time in real life.
  • There will be something for everyone – regardless of their age or gaming experience level.
  • Planning and creative work on these areas is well underway; they will open separately over the next several years.

The new themed areas come as the result of a global partnership between Universal Parks & Resorts and Nintendo – two icons of the entertainment world.  Universal theme parks create incredibly popular family entertainment experiences for millions of people based on compelling characters, stories and innovative technology.  Nintendo creates remarkable and imaginative games filled with captivating stories and beloved characters.

Each Universal theme park will announce details of its specific Nintendo areas.  The first such announcement will come soon.

About Universal Parks & Resorts
Universal Parks & Resorts, a unit of Comcast NBCUniversal, offers guests around the globe today’s most relevant and popular entertainment experiences. With three-time Academy Award winner Steven Spielberg as creative consultant, its theme parks are known for immersive experiences that feature some of the world’s most thrilling and technologically advanced film- and television-based attractions.

Comcast NBCUniversal wholly owns Universal Studios Hollywood, which includes Universal CityWalk Hollywood. It also owns Universal Orlando Resort, a destination resort with two theme parks (Universal Studios Florida and Universal’s Islands of Adventure), five resort hotels, and Universal CityWalk Orlando. In addition, Comcast NBCUniversal owns a 51 percent majority interest in Universal Studios Japan, in Osaka and has a license agreement with Universal Studios Singapore at Resorts World Sentosa, Singapore.  The company has also announced plans for a theme park in Beijing.

Universal Studios Hollywood Announces Grinchmas 2016

Universal City, California – November 7, 2016 It’s the most wonderful time of the year at The Entertainment Capital of L.A.SM as Universal Studios Hollywood™ and Universal CityWalk® deck the halls for a wintry calendar of cool holiday activities and scrumptious treats that families and friends far and wide can enjoy.

A grinchy-green “Grinchmas™” returns to Universal Studios Hollywood with a Who-lebration fit for The Grinch, his faithful dog Max and a roster of Who-ville Whos.  Holiday whimsy also will permeate throughout “Despicable Me Minion Mayhem” and the adjoining “Super Silly Fun Land” as a crew of very merry mischievous Minions spread Christmas cheer to visitors of all ages.

Delectable hot Butterbeer™ will complement the menu at Three Broomsticks™ and Hog’s Head pub when “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™” at Universal Studios Hollywood debuts this newest addition of the favorite beverage to its offerings of scrumptious fare.  Like its traditional and frozen counterparts, hot Butterbeer is reminiscent of butterscotch and shortbread that’s been perfectly fine-tuned as a Hogsmeade holiday treat.

Universal Plaza, the elaborate grand piazza at the heart of the theme park, will once again serve as the backdrop for the “Grinchmas” event where the towering 60 foot tall whimsical “Grinchmas” tree will beautifully twist and spiral as the ideal photo opp for guests.  “Grinchmas” runs weekends on December 3-4 and 10-11, and daily from December 16 through January 1, 2017.

As part of the fab-Who-lous event, Martha May Who-vier and the Who Dolls will take center stage by the “Grinchmas” tree, performing energetic musical sets to usher in the Christmas season in style.  The Who-liday Singers – a hip boy-band ensemble – will perform nightly a cappella concerts featuring a mix of Christmas favorites and pop rock.

The spirited “Grinchmas” event will also capture guests’ imagination with a variety of inspiring activities designed to create long lasting memories. These include:

  • Who-ville Post Office – Visitors will have a chance to partake in the “Grow Your Heart 3 Sizes” campaign when they share their good deeds on a postcard and mail them to The Grinch. In return, Dr. Seuss Enterprises, L.P. and Random House Children’s Books, the publishers of Dr. Seuss’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas!, will pay it forward by donating a book to a child in need through First Book on behalf of the sender.
  • Trim up the Tree Lot – Guests can design and personalize their own “Grinchmas” ornaments to help decorate the venue’s other “Grinchmas” trees or take them home as a memorable keepsake.
  • Story Time with Cindy-Lou Who – Cindy-Lou Who and her Who friends will gather guests of all ages – tall and small – for an engaging storytelling show of Dr. Seuss’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas.

The spirit of “Grinchmas” also will come to life aboard the world-famous behind-the-scenes Studio Tour with engaging performances by unforgettable Who-ville Whos re-enacting popular scenes and songs from the family favorite at the original film sets from the blockbuster film, Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas.

The holidays at Universal Studios Hollywood are included in the price of theme park admission.  More information is available atwww.UniversalStudiosHollywood.com.

The spirit of the season continues with a wintertime transformation of Universal CityWalk, beginning the day after Thanksgiving on Friday, November 25 through Sunday, January 1, 2017.

A spectacular 40-foot tall Christmas tree will glisten with 200,000 LED icicles choreographed to the lights and sounds of the season in the “5 Towers” plaza. Santa Claus will make nightly appearances and offer special photo opportunities at “5 Towers.”

The iconic, dancing water fountain situated at the heart of CityWalk also will make a splash this holiday season. This modern and impressive fountain displaying over 230 individual power jets will project streams of choreographed water into the air complemented by red and green LED lights and an array of holiday-themed music.

Free concert performances at “5 Towers” and an eclectic ensemble of talented street performers will make CityWalk the ultimate L.A. holiday destination. Admission to Universal CityWalk is free.

To learn more about Universal Studios Hollywood and the various Annual Pass options, including the new California Neighbor Pass, please visitwww.UniversalStudiosHollywood.com/tickets.  Additional information is available at www.UniversalStudiosHollywood.com. Like Universal Studios Hollywood on Facebook and follow @UniStudios on Instagram and Twitter.