Universal Orlando opens the Wizarding World for free to Harry Potter movie fans
Universal Orlando had a surprise for Harry Potter fans early Friday morning. Islands of Adventure admitted everyone who watched the midnight premiere of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part Two at CityWalk to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter for two hours after the show.
Hey, I'd suggested that Universal make the premiere a hard-ticket event and that the resort was missing out by not doing something special. Well, Universal did something special all right. If you were there, tell us about it in the comments.
UPDATE: Got a text that Forbidden Journey and Dragon Challenge were not open during the special event.
UPDATE 2: Here's Universal's promotional video of the event:
Well, that's a bummer. No Forbidden Journey OR Dragon's Challenge? What's the point even opening it up? Were the stores even open? ;)
It was awesome! It was wonderful seeing Harry Potter fanatics everywhere and, really, there is nothing quite like the Hogwarts castleblit up at night. This was a fantastic surprise for people who get to go to the park all the time and for first time guests.
The stores were open, Olivander's Wand Experience was opened, Flying Hippogriff was open. They had a castle tour/walkthrough but no ride, and can't do Dragon Challenge after a certain time of night due to noise restrictions. The Three Broomsticks was closed but Hogs Head was serving Butterbeer. It was a terrific end to the evening (morning?)!
Hope you all got a butterbeer and soaked in the magic. What a lovely surprise. I'm so jealous!
FYI - The final installment of the HP franchise blasted through the previous midnight record ($30m) by scoring almost $44m last night. Wow!
I hate to be a cynic about this, but clearly Universal saw a chance to sell a bunch of extra Butterbeer that night, and were happy to let an audience full of fans in free for a couple of hours, but damn if they were going to give away a ride on their big attraction! You can come back tomorrow and pay for that privilege. It's a cool gesture, but really, is it going to break their bank to let these fans ride the Forbidden Journey in a two hour block?
Despite not letting folks ride Forbidden, I still think it's overall a really cool move on Universal's part. They still had to pay the staff to be there, etc. so kudos. Wish I could have been there!
CityWalk was showing HP7-2 on all 20 screens last night. What's the overall capacity of the theaters? What's the hourly capacity of FJ? Would it even have been possible to get all the moviegoers on FJ by 5am if it had been running?
Supposedly there was in the area of 3000+ people that were invited to WWoHP after the film ended. According to the math, Forbidden Journey, if running properly, I would say conservatively can put through 2500 an hour. Should have been enough time for everybody to get at least one ride in. Special passes could have been handed out in the theater to ensure one ride per guest so everybody had a chance to ride.
Good PR stunt...and they didn't even have to open the main two attractions. I wonder how long the line for the Hippograf was and what the capacity of it is?
I know this sounds dumb, but if you have a day pass into Islands of Adventure, is there an extra charge for WWOHP??
No, you don't. It's part of the park, and the admission price.
Hey guys, I am currently at the Hard Rock Hotel at Universal Studios. We saw HP7 Part 2 at the Cineplex last night.... It is Harry Potter mania this week. We didn't plan to be here when the movie was released, it just sort of worked out that way.
FJ could've certainly hosted more guests than Olivander's. I just thought of the Rocket Rods-almost fun while nearly pointless.
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