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What will be the next big construction project at Universal Orlando's theme parks?

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Published: September 4, 2013 at 1:30 PM

A flurry of construction permits from the Universal Orlando Resort continues to fuel speculation about what Universal might be building in its theme parks next. Universal's certainly been leading in the industry in construction progress over the past few years, with its lightning-fast development of Transformers: The Ride 3D, the redevelopment around The Simpsons, and the ongoing construction of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter - Diagon Alley.

Universal Studios Florida
What's next to go under construction at the Universal Orlando resort?

While it's always helpful to keep an eye on permits and other public records to discover a theme park's plans, it's also helpful to consider the context of what's already there. Let's start with two assumptions:

1) Any land or attraction at the Universal Orlando Resort that's not up to the theming and finish standards established in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter will be upgraded or replaced to meet those standards.

2) Universal won't throw good money after bad.

Since Harry Potter opened in Islands of Adventure, Universal has upgraded The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man to a 4K projection system, opened Despicable Me, built Transformers on the site of the empty old Xena soundstage and refurbished the area around the old International Film Festival food court into Springfield USA. Harry Potter has reinforced the lesson — for Universal and the entire theme park industry — that spending money on high-quality attractions and environment makes you more money in return. Since Potter's finally given Universal the adequate cash flow to walk that talk, it will.

So what's next? It's easiest for Universal to upgrade locations themed to franchises that it owns (or holds a long-term license to use) and that are likely to continue to appeal to visitors for a generation or more. The Simpsons fit that model. So did Spider-Man. Obviously, some of the properties in the Universal Orlando theme parks don't fit that model. Those lands and attractions will be replaced, rather than refurbished. However, Universal won't move on that construction until it's lined up an appropriate replacement franchise.

Ultimately, audience appeal is key. Universal closed Jaws, one of its iconic franchises — and one that it owned, not licensed — to clear space for Harry Potter in Universal Studios Florida. So nostalgia alone won't keep any existing lands or attractions safe. Universal must see an enduring appeal among its visitors and potential visitors.

With those thoughts in mind, where's Universal Orlando next most likely to take on new construction projects?

Likely to get improvements

Hollywood Rip, Ride, Rockit: Universal Studios Florida's rough and unreliable roller coaster already's gotten the first of its new trains. If the new trains help improve the coaster's ride and reliability, expect to see it stick around, with cosmetic changes to improve the queue. If the new trains don't help, however, this ride moves onto the "likely to be replaced" list.

Terminator 2: 3D: Yes, Universal closed this attraction in California to make way for Despicable Me. But Universal Studios Hollywood has much less space available for expansion than the Orlando parks, and Terminator star Arnold Schwarzenegger is a toxic product in California, thanks to his miserable turn as the state's governor. (He left office as the most unpopular governor in state history.) Universal's already filed permits for upgrades in this theater. Add a modern, 4K-3D projection system (pretty please?), and T2 could be good to go in Florida for another generation.

Wet n' Wild: Universal didn't just buy the land under this park to own an unthemed water park with limited tourist appeal. Expect to see substantial changes on this property in the years to come. One could argue that this property should be on the "likely to be replaced" list, but since we've heard no credible information that Universal will replace Wet n' Wild with something other than an improved water park, this goes on the improvement list for now, even though a new name for the property might be considered one of those improvements.

Jurassic Park: This is the one franchise in Islands of Adventure that Universal owns outright. Plus, Jurassic Park's dinosaurs offer enduring popularity, so it's the obvious choice for immediate expansion within IoA.

From here, we move down the priority list a bit.

Seuss Landing: Licensed from Random House, Seuss Landing was the best-themed land in Islands of Adventure before Potter, but its bright colors make it a hog for fresh paint. Expect to see more aggressive maintenance in this land in the years to come, if not an expansion into the remaining Lost Continent area, if Universal decides to promote additional Seuss-themed movies.

Revenge of the Mummy: Still a fan favorite, Mummy might benefit from some on-ride effects upgrades, but beyond that, Universal could get more return on its investment with upgrades elsewhere.

Men in Black: Licensed from Columbia, Men in Black remains a popular franchise and shooter rides are great for encouraging repeat visits. This and the next entry on the list could be candidates for the replacement list if Universal lands a hot property that fits best in their buildings. Otherwise, they're both solid attractions that deserve a little additional maintenance love now and then.

Universal Horror Make-up Show: This is the last remaining "how movies are made"-type attraction in Orlando (or will be, once Disaster! goes away — see below), and continues to win positive reviews from fans.

Likely to be replaced

Toon Lagoon: Enjoy this land now, because the only thing keeping it open is the fact that Universal hasn't secured the rights to a replacement yet. Universal licenses all the characters in this section, including Popeye from King Features Syndicate, Dudley Do-Right from Jay Ward Productions (now owned by DreamWorks Animation) and a bunch of other newspaper comic characters from various syndicates. The ongoing decline of the newspaper industry (and its comics) severely limits the appeal of much of the IP in this area. That makes this the land most likely to be completely replaced at Islands of Adventure. (*cough* Lord of the Rings *cough*)

Woody Woodpecker's Kidzone: Today's teen-agers might hide fond memories of watching Barney when they were kids. Today's 20-somethings enjoyed Fievel back in the day, as GenX-ers did ET. The baby boomers read Curious George, and a generation before that loved Woody Woodpecker shorts in the movie theaters. Notice anyone missing, though? How about today's children? It's too bad Universal didn't use Gru and the Minions to replace ET, then redevelop the surrounding area into Super Silly Fun Land. That would have been cool. Universal floated the idea of a Smurfs attraction replacement in this area, but that sequel's poor reception at the box office likely doomed that idea. As soon as Universal can settle on an alternate replacement plan, this land is toast.

Disaster!: The Christopher Walken overlay at least scrubbed the references to the old Charlton Heston Earthquake movie no one under age 50 remembers. But it's still not hitting with fans. If Universal wanted to build a new animatronic Kong attraction, this might be the most appropriate site.

Fear Factor Live: Licensed from Endemol, no one in America cares about this franchise anymore. NBC's cancelled it on TV and the only question in play here is… does Universal slot a new live show into this theater, or tear it down to build an entirely new attraction? If Universal chooses the new show option, that could come within the next year or two.

Twister: The Helen Hunt movie's worth watching if you come across it on TV on a lazy Saturday afternoon. But that's not enough appeal to justify a position in a theme park that has aspirations for becoming the one of the world's best.

Shrek: Universal's already dropped its license for all the other DreamWorks animation characters. Shrek's expected to follow them out the door when its license deal is up in a few years.

Lost Continent: The remains of what didn't get reskinned as Hogsmeade linger, but the IP is in the public domain, so there's no hurry to dump what can be an impressive Poseidon show (when it's properly maintained) as well as the fan-favorite Mythos Restaurant. The Sindbad show's proximity to the expanding Wizarding World of Harry Potter makes it an obvious target for assimilation, but the rest of the land likely will hang on until Universal decides to expand Seuss. Or until Universal Studios puts a Poseidon movie into production.

Beetlejuice: Like the bulk of Lost Continent, the Beetlejuice show could go either way — refurbished or replaced. Given that this is a license, though, that seems to tip it toward the long-term replacement list.

Likely to remain the hostage in a Universal/Disney IP turf war

Marvel Super Hero Island: We've written about this before, but the TL/DR is that Universal licenses the rights to these characters from Disney in perpetuity and Universal ain't selling them back without getting a fleet of truckloads of cash in exchange. Universal would love to expand this area to capitalize further on the wildly popular Avengers, but Universal's limited to what it's already built unless Disney gives its blessing for expansion, which it won't. That puts this land in eternal limbo. Universal recently upgraded the Spider-Man ride. Look for continued cosmetic and functional upgrades in this section whenever Universal feels like giving Disney's management another case of indigestion.

That's where things stand now at the Universal Orlando Resort. So let's talk to management: What would you like to see Universal do next to improve its Orlando properties?

Readers' Opinions

From 24.227.58.22 on September 4, 2013 at 1:58 PM
They need to build Space Fantasy: The Ride, from Universal Osaka! Over there, it replaced ET.
From Jorge Arnoldson on September 4, 2013 at 1:59 PM
For T2, I would keep the 70mm projection system, as it is of a significantly higher picture and color quality than 4K (and even 8K) digital projection. Definitely update the preshow to include better representations of future technology, and order new, clean 70mm film prints (if not restore the current prints) for the main show.

As for E.T. Adventure, Universal should make significant upgrades to every aspect of this classic instead of replacing it with a ride based on a lackluster adaptation of a classic cartoon.

From 69.138.248.251 on September 4, 2013 at 2:01 PM
I love how Universal is continuing to dump money in Orlando. Sounds like they have a bunch of options on what they'll do next and I'm willing to bet that it will be awesome.

I totally forgot about Fear Factor Live, it's always overlooked on my visits and I'm sure the same goes for other visitors. It definitely has to go.

From 98.227.60.180 on September 4, 2013 at 2:23 PM
This is what I would love to see Universal management do:

* Make all of the remaining Lost Continent into more Harry Potter areas. I think they could do A LOT with the Forbidden Forest, Shrieking Shack, Malfoy Manor, and the locations from Deathly Hallows in this area. It would be a spooky "land" that would really put the focus on all the scary areas in the Harry Potter world. I think the whole area could be called the Forbidden Forest....with Shrieking Shack being Universal's version of Haunted Mansion...and Malfoy Manor could be a restaurant and also a theater for some kind of show. I also think they could do either a coaster or a dark ride featuring the zombies-in-the-cave and other spooky things Harry encountered in the last book when he was looking for the horcruxes in Deathly Hallows.

* Find a way to keep the paint looking bright in the Dr.Seuss area. I know, that's not great advice because it's probably impossible...but the paint looks so run-down and dingy so fast after it's painted. Can't they use auto body paint or something because cars never seem to fade like this? I also think they should build the Mount Grinch ride I heard rumored long ago...themed to the Grinch's mountain over Who-Ville. The mountain can be used to block out sight lines in the park.

* I'm making this its own bullet point because Universal has a lot of sight line problems in both parks. I also wish they would do something to hide the steel structures for the coasters. There's that architect who does fan-designs of rides at IdealBuildOut and a while back he did a drawing of how easy it would be for Universal to hide the steel of the Dragon Challenge and Hippogriff rides by just making the supports look like either stone or wood, and building some fake mountains around the rides so that it would really look like you are in Harry Potter's world. Right now, you need some imagination to ignore the steel of the coasters and to block out the views of other areas of the park. I wish they would spend the extra money and truly make it all immersive and eliminate ALL sight line issues everywhere.

* I think in general, Universal should do what Disney did to Buena Vista Street at DCA. They took a very cheap-looking and generic area and made it gorgeous by adding lots of great details. Right now, 80% of Universal's parks look cheap to me. Still better than Six Flags, but still cheap. In fairness, I think Disney has the same problem in Dinoland USA and in parts of DHS too...and DCA was a disaster at first. But I'd love Universal to reskin all its buildings, especially the ones that just look like giant boxes. This would be like going from a solid-B to becoming an A+ park in my book.

I know some people rave about Portofino Bay, but I think it looks cheap too. It looks like a step below what you'd find in Las Vegas...and I guess what I am wishing for is for the bar to be set higher than Vegas.

From Steve Weintraub on September 4, 2013 at 2:34 PM
Poseidon has one of the most impressive and photogenic ride buildings in any land anywhere, and when it was new, had some absolutely jaw dropping effects (the illusion of suddenly being transported back to the "magic door" room from the bottom of the sea in an instant was, literally, dumbfounding)
This made up for the rather lame water and fire show in the impressive undersea chamber.

Now the whole thing is cluttered with Indiana Jones skeletons and claptrap. It's a little like the World of Imagination fiasco- a ride that was charming and coherent "fixed" to the brink of pointlessness.

I still think there is a spectacular attraction in there.

From Daniel Etcheberry on September 4, 2013 at 2:44 PM
I love the E.T. ride. The fact that I can take my wheelchair into the ride is pretty great. I loved the movie (sorry Robert), and I am from the generation x, so E.T. was a huge influence for me. I would hate to see that ride go.

About Disaster, they could change it for King Kong 360. Instead of Christopher Walken, you could have Peter Jackson giving a briefing. The room before the ride could be themed as a jungle. I loved that attraction (the best part of the Studio Tour), and it should come to Orlando. Kong looks better in HD than the animatronic version.

Great article Robert.

From Scuba Diver on September 4, 2013 at 2:55 PM
Fast and Furious is such an obvious choice I don't understand why they haven't done anything with it yet (except for that dumb car dance in Hollywood's backlot tour)

Another obvious choice is to bring and expand the Resident Evil attraction from Japan. It sounds great from reviews I read

A crazy and very unlikely to happen idea would be to buy the 007 James Bond license. How awesome would it be to have an attraction with the ultimate action hero in the T2 theater? Or a recreation of classic scenes in the Fear Factor space (like Indy in Disney Studios)? This could be huge...

Ok. Let's bring that idea down to Earth and to a franchise they already own: Jason Bourne. Definitely not the same appeal but would work as well

If Shrek's to go soon, how about a Hellboy 4D movie? I'm sure Guillermo del Toro would go absolutely wild with that idea...

Not to mention Lord of the Rings: that's everyone's dream...

From Jonah Sirota on September 4, 2013 at 3:00 PM
Thanks, Robert, for this very thought-provoking take on which IP would/should stay and which should go. I agree with almost all of your thoughts. I know that you don't like E.T., but I think a solution to the kidsZone area should not get rid of that attraction, because it is the closest thing that Universal has to a Snow White or Peter Pan-level timeless property. Jaws was like that, but is no more.
My solution for the area is to double-down on SpongeBob and Dora (as in the parade) and keep E.T. Curious George is still popular with the little ones. A Bikini Bottom playground and Dora/Diego wilderness re-theme of the Woody Woodpecker coaster could work very well. Smurfs is DOA, and I'm glad for that! btw, I recently re-watched ET, and I agree with your earlier thoughts about how they portrayed NASA (and the entire field of science and medicine) in the movie. But are the current crop of alien-as-evil-invaders movies doing us a whole lot better? When I was a kid, ET made me want to search the night sky for life. Now all of these alien horror flicks make me want to hide under my bed...
From 67.191.105.166 on September 4, 2013 at 3:05 PM
The Lost Continent has some of the most impressive theming in any theme park, so I really hope it doesn't get replaced, but rather plussed. I wouldn't mind seeing Toon Lagoon go, though. Popeye, the Dudley-Do Right facade and the Sweet Haven area are the only three redeeming things about this dying land.
From Bryce McGibeny on September 4, 2013 at 3:19 PM
^Oops, forgot to log in.

I don't get the "Universal looks cheap" comment and that it's just a little bit better than Six Flags... Posted by the anonymous poster.

IOA's Port of Entry, Seuss Landing, Lost Continent, WWoHP and Jurassic Park are enough to make any theme park fan wet their pants. Those lands are absolutely gorgeous and not cheap. I can possibly see argument for the poor transition from MSHI to TL, and the "cut-outs" in Marvel Super Hero Island (which I personally don't mind, but I know it bothers some other people...)

From robert morris on September 4, 2013 at 3:27 PM
My thought for LOTR expansion is similar to those already mentioned with a twist.

Retheming Toon Lagoon for the Shire, The Prancing Pony and Rivendale

Then build a tunnel underneath Adventure Way (the tunnel themed for the dwarfs mines)

The Tunnel would travel under Adventure Way and to the parcel of land between Royal Pacific and Cabana Bay

When you exit the tunnel on the other side is Long Lake, Mordor and the rest.

This would allow the park to actually expand its acreage also

From 69.125.217.204 on September 4, 2013 at 6:03 PM
Robert said: "..the old Charlton Heston Earthquake movie no one under age 50 remembers."

Heyyyy! I'm under 50 (OK, barely) and I saw and loved Earthquake multiple times in theaters on its original run..in Sensurround, no less. It stands as the film that first allowed the world to see Victoria Principal's talents...and that tight t-shirt didn't hurt, either.

Trivia...what were the other two films to be released in Sensurround? (Hint..one is very appropriate for this forum)

From 72.80.156.103 on September 4, 2013 at 7:36 PM
Its funny, I remember going to Universal Orlando with wife as part of our honeymoon in Florida. And we still have the video we did when they inserted you into a Star Trek movie. And I always think that is one of those IPs that they had in the park at one point and then lost. But Star Trek has a following on par with Star Wars over at Disney and Harry Potter. If they could get that license back and do something with that, they would have another strong anchor.
From Anon Mouse on September 4, 2013 at 8:33 PM
Under "Likely to be replaced", you can't be serious. You cited so many animated/cartoon characters. That is the whole basis of the theme parks, which is to appeal to kids who begin at 2 years old. Disney hardly ever replaces their cartoon characters. They get updated instead. See Mickey Mouse and Brave (for example). Anyways, my four year old loves Shrek. She clearly enjoyed the Shrek 4D movie. What needs to happen is an updated Shrek ride. Change the movie into a ride.

Yes, we don't know the Toon Lagoon characters, but they are still whimsical. It is no different then not knowing the Roger Rabbit characters, but we still love the ride. Keep the characters, update the rides/attractions.

As for Twister and Disaster, why not keep them? They are fun rides. Thus, the only attraction that must be removed is "Fear Factor Live". I don't much care for the fascination with bugs and such. This one will be missed by no one.

From Thomas tskogg on September 4, 2013 at 9:12 PM
Always love these stories. If I had a say...

USF
1) Shrek is cute but can be replaced.
2) Twister is a waste of time.
3) The Mummy rules but could use some new effects.
4) You can't remove Beetlejuice. It's the only place to see the original Universal monsters (Clips in the Make-Up show don't count). Just need to change the songs every once in awhile. And make sure Don is always there!
5) Disaster is a disaster. Dump it and bring back Kong. Better yet, how about creating a Kong vs. Jaws attraction for all of us traditionalists!
6) Dump Fear Factor.
7) Upgrade Men In Black.
8) Dump Simpsons and bring back Back to the Future (I WISH!)
9) ET needs to upgrade.
10) Do not touch the Make-Up Show! (Anyone know what happened to the blonde guy with the pony tail that was there for years? Haven't seen him in an awhile. He was the best!)

IOA
1) New coat of paint to Seuss world.
2) Keep Poseidon at all costs but upgrade the video at the end. 3D would be tremendous.
3) Sinbad needs updating.
4) Love WWHP but with the new additions enough is enough. Don't overexpose the Golden Goose.
5) Can't wait for the JP upgrade.
6) No problem with rebranding Toon Lagoon but must keep Popeye and Dudley rides (change themes if necessary).

One last thing...expand HHN to IOA!

From Jeffrey H on September 4, 2013 at 9:45 PM
I get what you're saying about the outdated cartoon characters, Robert, but part of me thinks Universal is playing "Wait and see" about Woody Woodpecker's presence in the parks. Remember that Illumination Entertainment is developing a Woody Woodpecker movie and if they hit it out of the park like Despicable Me and Lorax, I don't see why they wouldn't want to expand his presence on property. Plus they own him.

I've often wondered why they decided to use Dudley Do-Right for Ripsaw Falls and not Rocky and Bullwinkle. They're easily more famous and I can recall quite a few instances in which they went to a sawmill. Anyways, I think they should just re-do Toon Lagoon. Drop the useless comic strip stuff (and bulldoze the stadium), keep Popeye and swap Dudley for a more popular theme. Give us another major ride in Toon Lagoon and call it a day. Maybe some more kid friendly attractions. IOA and Universal really need more stuff for the little ones.

From Robert Niles on September 4, 2013 at 10:23 PM
Obviously, any decision to revive old IP by the movie studio changes this analysis, as I alluded to with my comment about Poseidon. But that would apply to Woody Woodpecker or any other IP, too.

Disney brilliantly manages to keep its old animation IP fresh over the years (well, some of it, at least). Universal's not done well with that, and that limits the appeal of the Kidzone in USF. So Universal has a choice: Replace its current IP with IP it can keep fresh, or freshen what's now there.

IMHO, NBCUniversal needs to develop its Sprout network with its own characters, and bring them into the parks as a replacement for the current Kidzone, with Sprout branding.

From 211.114.49.233 on September 4, 2013 at 10:35 PM
Yes, to the first commenter. SPACE FANTASY X 1,000,000. I've been preaching this for years
From Mark Kausch on September 4, 2013 at 10:43 PM
Only slightly o-t: I also saw Earthquake multitimes in the theater. Scared the bejeebers outta me. I had to put my feet up on the next row of seats I KNEW if that concrete floor was also shaking...

Don't know the third movie in Senserround but Roller Coaster came after Earthquake. Bad choice. Didn't work very well. It would just move into the amplified noise and then back without any rhyme or reason.

From Jeffrey Britton on September 5, 2013 at 6:09 AM
I am really surprised that there are people defending the Poseidon attraction. IMHO it needs to go. The effects are dated and underwhelming, the upkeep is terrible and it takes up way too much space. I think the area should be split into a new HP attraction and a new Seuss attraction.
The only other thing that hasn't been mentioned is possible new expansion. There is that tract of land between Simpsons and MiB. With that vacant land, re-imagining the MiB and bulldozing the Fear Factor stadium there is enough space for another new land..... Well a small one.
From Mike Gallagher on September 5, 2013 at 7:41 AM
Mark, the other Sensurround film was a war movie called Midway. Earthquake was by far the most effective use of the technology (which was a very big deal back in the mid 1970's, before most people on here were even a glimmer in their parents' eyes. Now get off my lawn!)
From Eric G on September 5, 2013 at 9:59 AM
There is no Turf War between Disney and Universal. Stop trying to stir up controversy when there is none. You sound like a fool continuing to say this when Universal has recently told the press that Marvel is staying.

The trains are not the problem with Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit. The track is the problem. This roller coaster is a turkey and Universal was being cheap when they selected Maurer Sohne to build this ride instead of Bolliger & Mabillard.

MIB: Alien Attack won't be touched. It's a capacity machine for busy days and arguably the best dark ride ever built.

Overall, this article contains just a bunch of nonsense.

From Paul Moreau on September 5, 2013 at 12:46 PM
Poseidon? People actually still like this attraction? The decoration is pretty amazing, but the show itself is awful.
From Jacob Sundstrom on September 5, 2013 at 1:18 PM
MiB "arguably the best dark ride ever built"

Yup, pretty sure a /lot/ of people would argue with that statement.

From David L. on September 5, 2013 at 4:37 PM
As much as I love the Lost Continent, it needs something. That could a major Poseidon update (Which is an incredible attraction, contrary to what many have posted) and a replacement for Sindbad; However, annexing half of the land to harry Potter and the other to Suess may be the best approach.

My opinion on Dragon Challenge: Tear it down or theme it like that guy at Ideal Build Out would do (He has some amazing ideas on his blog, check it out!).

As for Men in Black, I believe it is a good ride that deserves to stick around for a few more years, but it is not even close to the greatest dark rides out there. One could just as easily argue that Journey Into Imagination is the greatest dark ride ever.

From Jaiden Cohen on September 6, 2013 at 3:36 PM
Please do lord of the rings!! James Bond replacing Fear Factor could be a good idea. ET needs to go (see my review). But no more Shrek? NEVER! And terminator going? Not a chance.
From 174.236.99.255 on September 7, 2013 at 3:57 AM
Why not remove E.T. and put in a Harry Potter flying car simulator attraction like soarin'. Change the queue area into the forbidden forest. In this case instead of taking E.T. back to his planet you take harry back to Hogwarts because his friends are in danger. Instead guests will be passing through the death eaters, dementors, and other creatures.

Also change barney into a Simpsons live show and change curious george into a Nintendo interactive area. or maybe an apple store.

PLEASE UNIVERSAL REMOVE E.T. AND PUT IN SOMETHING NOT STUPID IT'S TIME FOR E.T. TO GO HOME!

From 67.190.216.67 on September 7, 2013 at 11:04 AM
USF
.replace disaster with king kong 360 3d
.replace woody woodpecks zone with nickelodeon or super silly fun land and replace et and move despicable me to et
.replace twister
.replace beetlejuice with waterworld
.add studiotour to usf
.replace make up show with a special effects stage
.upgrade mummy mib terminator
.replace terminator [if needed]
.replace fear factor
IOA
.replace toon lagoon with lord of the rings
.make a new jurrasic park ride
.replace lost continet
.replace suesslanding
From 86.163.1.64 on September 7, 2013 at 7:01 PM
The Beetlejuice Theatre is too small to build a Waterworld arena.

they can't clone the Studio Tour because the Production facilities is not like the Hollywood Studio.

Universal Studios Hollywood is one of the oldest and most famous Hollywood movie studios still in use and the Studio Tour is signature ride of the park.

Universal Studios Florida is just a Theme park and is design to let guests walk around the movie sets.

From O T on September 7, 2013 at 8:25 PM
I think Universal still has a lot of room to improve but I love the parks as they are now. A few thoughts:
Shrek: they just build a new meet and great so I think at least 1 theatre is going to stay. There are 2 so the other one can become something new.
Twister: Please get rid of it. I loves the Ghostbusters show but that are some old films to so something new and shiny would be nice.
Disaster: is...old and boring (except for the last part). Its a "this is how he make movies" ride and because Universal is steering away from that kind of attractions I think this one needs to go. That leaves a lot of room and a Kong 3D would be silly. In Hollywood it's part of a bigger tour so putting a tour tram in there and get us in that part would be a waist of space. Also the Kong franchise isn't strong so make it something new. A indoor, outdoor log ride would be fun.
Fear Factor: Please Universal this show is awful! Add this land to Potter and make it the ministry of magic place. It could be a huge building hugging the gringotts coaster building. It could house an elevator attraction and a live stage spectacle with illusions, stunts and special effects.

For IOA I would love to see the following:
Jurassic Park: Add a new ride with water dino's in there. I've seen some art from the new movie and this could be cool.
Toon Lagoon: This would make a wonderful Middle Earth. The Popeye ride could be the Hobbit barrel escape scene (for the upcoming films) and Duddly should go. The ride vehicles are a mess. They indeed could go under or over the road to expand the land.
Marvel: If Disney really want's it back and they bring a ton of money I would love to see it go. I don't care for man in tights and silly masks and capes. Let Disney build it's own omnimover ride trough super hero land. I would love a good Sci-fi franchise going in there. I love Battlestar Galactica (the new one) but I don't think most people are very fond of it. Maybe Star Trek or something original they thing up.
Suess: For paint they could use the stuff we painted our house with when we lived in Orlando. It's stuff they put on lighthouses.
I like the Lost Continent. The show and attraction could do with an update. If they want to extend Suess they can go to eat up some of the studio space behind it.

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