Terminator 2:3D to close at Universal Orlando next month
The Universal Orlando Resort let slip this morning that it will close the Terminator 2:3D show at Universal Studios Florida next month.
Attentive readers noticed this morning that the T2:3D page on Universal Orlando's website included a new note at the bottom of the attraction's description, revealing that the attraction "will run its last shows on Sunday, October 8 to make way for an all-new live action experience based on a high-energy Universal franchise. It will open in 2019."
Universal has since pulled down the note, returning the page to its previous form. Like most major parks, Universal typically doesn't bury news like this on attraction listing pages. If it is going to officially confirm an attraction closure, it usually does that with social media posts and press releases. The clock is now ticking on when we will see those.
So what could this "live action experience based on a high-energy Universal franchise" be? The Fast and the Furious is already getting a new ride in the park for next year, so we probably can rule out that. Hollywood Boulevard seems a strange place for anything related to Jurassic Park/World. More Minions? A Jason Bourne show, which probably wouldn't be that different from T2? Dark Universe, even though that's hardly taken off yet?
Universal Studios Hollywood closed its Terminator 2:3D show in 2012 to make way for its Despicable Me ride and adjoining Super Silly Fun Land. That park also has a year-round The Walking Dead Attraction that would seem to fit in T2:3D's Florida space. But TWD isn't a Universal franchise, as Universal uses it under license from AMC.
Universal does have the DreamWorks Animation franchises at its disposal now, but those seem a potentially odd fit for a "live action" show. (How ironic would it be, though, if screen-happy Universal went live action for its animation franchises?)
So let's throw this out there: If Universal wants to promote one of its current popular live-action franchises that would be "perfect" for a theme park show, the next candidate up would be a Pitch Perfect musical show. Plausible?
What are you hoping to see in T2:3D's space at Universal Studios Florida?
Given that the show broke down twice in 2 days (one fatal error when the sound cut out, and one strange but non fatal error when the bike did not appear) I think its clear it does need to close at least for a complete overhaul. That the IP is stale (with numerous lackluster sequels) and was only playing to 1/2-2/3 full theatres at the time despite limited show times mean that just an overhaul can't be justified - replacement is overdue.
YES!!!!! Finally - we always walk past the out dated boring attraction...
Terminator was a really good show but I think it is time for it to go. Quite a few universal rides need updating such as Shrek 4D and fear factor live. Seeing as Nintendo land is presumed to be going near ET I don't presume that this new ride/show will be kid based, probably more teen or adult based.
My vote is for "DarkUniverse" aka Universal Monsters, but I won't hold my breath.
Fear Factor live was not operating the entire time I was there. Perhaps it has already quietly gone?
Terminator 2:3D Battle Across Time was without doubt an amazing show for its time. Sadly, that time has come and gone. I saw it countless times working Duty Manager shifts at USF in the 90's and early 00's. Without fail, the entire audience would break in to applause when the massive LN2 blast swallowed up the theater at the end of the show.
A shame but it is rather outdated and Arnie's stardom falling over the years since. Hard to see, I would imagine Universal was thinking a "Dark Universe" thing but that entire franchise looks DOA so hard to tell. Tricky but so many properties out there, I'm sure Universal can click on something fun but will miss the great '90s vibe of this attraction.
It's a shame that yet another of Universal's original attractions is on the way out, but I understand why. Personally, I'd love to see TWD take its place. Something a little more adult orientated would be nice, what with Super Nintendo Land coming, in the near future.
Another once beloved attraction thrown to the curb. Not a fan of this decision.
Another Terminator sequel with Arnold is in development with James Cameron doing the story. It is better if they can update the attraction to the current storyline. The show was very good and Disney, sadly, never surpassed it.
Back to the Future new Ride?
The problem with a Pitch Perfect show would be the cost to license all the songs. A theme park a cappella singing show cannot survive on original songs alone, and part of the charm of the movies has been the interesting arrangements/takes on popular songs. Anyway, a singing/dancing show would be best staged at the more traditional Beetlejuice Theater, not a space currently rigged for intricate special effects.
"Fifty Shades of Grey: The Live Experience"
I hear you James, but you have to admit T2 was on its last legs, and the multiple attempts to reboot the series have failed miserably. As I've stated many times in other forums, the beauty of screen based attractions is that they can be easily and more economically updated to keep up with pop culture. I think all too often theme parks maintain the status quo of their screen-based attractions that were never designed to be static. The whole selling point of these 4-D theaters and motion simulators was the ability for parks to quickly and cheaply switch out the content if the original attraction grew stale or the park wanted to move onto something new. These attraction systems were never supposed to house "classics", they were designed to stay on the cutting/bleeding edge of technology and guest experience. Universal probably ran T2 about 2-3 years too long, but then again Twister probably ran about 2-3 years too long also.
"Fifty Shades of Grey: The Live Experience"
I hope its not Pitch Perfect. How would that be different than any singing show at a Cedar Fair or Six Flags park. It seems well below Universal's threshold.
The scariest aspect of TWD in Hollywood is the contingent of big, sweaty Unversal security guards tasked with preventing any violations of the "No pictures/videos" policy.
It's about time to bring back the Ghostbusters...a high tech version....
I'm sad to see this closing, but as a 21 year old show based on a franchise with a questionable future I'm not at all surprised. As good as the show is, a 3-D movie just doesn't bring in the crowds anymore, and like Chad mentioned it probably isn't worth the upkeep given the audience size. I'll be sure to see it on my trip at the end of the month (I'm glad this one is staying long enough for me to get to it), but I definitely feel like it is probably time for this one to go.
I absolutely LOVE T2! It's my favorite 4D theater attraction that I've ever done! But I do agree it is tired and might need to go.
Another one bites the dust! One of my all-time favourite attractions. I will genuinely be sad to see it go especially as I don't arrive until after its last day but I understand it is probably time for a change. My money is for an action live show - Johnny English - or a musical - Mama Mia. Both are Universal's and both will be having sequels .
It might be a strange thought at first, but could there be a "Wicked" attraction/show? NBCUniversal Stage Production division has been ramping up.
"High Energy" implies Action film genre imo. Bourne would be great but is well passed the hight of popularity. Ironically Fast/Furious should be in this location as the films are rooted in LA, not San Francisco. Disney would've been slammed for that theming vioation lol.
I, for one, am glad they closed it, for numerous reasons. And I've seen that the store from that attraction has, for some reason, lots of Doctor Who stuff to sell. Now, that may be a long shot, but if Universal acquired the rights for Doctor Who from BBC... Could a Doctor Who attraction come? Probably not, but hey, a man can dream. Also, they have been closing a lot of stuff lately... And I fear for one of my favorite, most underrated rides: Doctor Doom's Fearfall. Stay strong, Doom, stay strong...
Well Luke, funny you should mention Doctor Who. The Retail outlet you exit through after watching T2 is full of Doctor Who Merch... and I can't work out why.
Russell and James: there are several other dud attractions still running at Universal that should be shuttered first. Terminator is still a viable IP and with a little refurb love, a viable attraction as well. The sad thing is I just know they're going to bring in some IP that I don't care about... Secret Life of Pets the 5D attraction where costume characters actually pee on you and hump your leg. Yeah!
I was hoping to see this show one last time on our Orlando vacation next month. I've always loved the "in your face" type of theme park 3D. Why not replace Fear Factor instead? That show needs to go.
Ready Player One is getting a sequel....but not sure if that lends itself to the space where T2 currently resides.
While I could imagine an awesome attraction similar to both Spider-Man and Transformers themed to the Terminator storyline, I also agree that Terminator 2: 3D is long overdue for a replacement since the movie itself is 27 years old now. The only downside is that the movie itself just got re-released into theaters with a 3D upgrade and I recently went to see it in theaters and it was awesome rewatching a classic such as Terminator 2 on the big screen again and so naturally, I'm excited to see the Terminator 2: 3D attraction at Universal again since it goes with the story of the movie a bit. Thankfully I'll get the chance since I'm going later this month and the show doesn't close till the beginning of next month, but again I agree it is time to see something new take its place.
Kinda glad it's closed, it's outdated, I didn't go on it at all when I went to USH And USF for several years. It's outdated, it's boring, and the Terminator franchise isn't as popular as it used to be. Universal wants to (and should) leverage its own IPs, like Disney now is doing with Star Wars and Marvel, since they never own the Terminator franchise to begin with.
I would really, really REALLY like a WWE show to go there. There are rumors of Global Force Wrestling (known to most of y'all as TNA) moving out because of corporate moving from Nashville to Toronto, which would give WWE the opportunity to move in.
Just want to point out that the last Terminator movie, which was one of the worst movies ever, even worse than Jurassic World, was the second highest grossing film of the series.
D A L E K S
James Rao The last Terminator bombed badly and didn't even make the top ten rank highest grossing movies of 2015. It gotten so bad James Cameron has to get involved and rewrite the whole thing, with the actors/actresses involved not returning again. So as it stands, the Terminator franchise has gotten really bad over the past two decades since T2 and Universal really needs to use its own IPs properly more often.
A lot of movies didn't make it in the top 10 highest grossing list of 2015. So what? Genisys was a bad movie - not every lousy movie makes money like Jurassic World did. However, the last Terminator movie was the second highest grossing film in the series. I never said it did great or that it was a good movie (only 1 & 2 were good, imho), just said it made the second most money ($440M).
Sorry James, but using world wide gross numbers comparing films decades apart is not really fair. Yes, the $440 million world-wide number (not adjusted for inflation) is good enough for 2nd best in the series. However, if you look at the numbers more closely, you'll see that Genisys was DEAD LAST in the 5-movie series in terms of domestic box office after being adjusted for inflation. If you're talking about the viability of an attraction in a US theme park, that's the number you should be looking at, not a world-wide box office number that is meaningless when comparing a movie today (that's shown on exponentially more screens in southeast Asia today than movies did just 10 years ago) to movies made 20+ years ago that relied predominantly on domestic box office receipts to gauge success/popularity. Those international numbers also don't adjust for inflation, nor do they consider rising production and marketing budgets. By this metric, Universal should have shown Brendan Fraser the pink slip months ago to plaster Tom Cruise all over Revenge of the Mummy following The Mummy's $400+ million world-wide gross (just $80 million in the US) earlier this summer.
Hey, about a Game of Thrones attraction.....
When talking about the popularity of an IP (not an attraction) the worldwide numbers are important. Otherwise Universal should have never built a Transformers ride at its two US parks, since the last two movies have been propped up by big numbers in China, despite quickly diminishing box office receipts in the US. As for adjusting for inflation, who cares? If that metric mattered then why isn't someone building a Gone with the Wind ride since it is far and away the most popular movie of all time, adjusting for inflation? Also, an IP is not just its movies - it is comics, novels, toys, TV shows, video games, card games, etc. etc. Terminator isn't a thriving franchise by any means, but it is still quite relevant in the public psyche and far more worthy of saving than something like Fear Factor or Shrek or Woody Woodpecker or the Horror Make Up Show - to name a few marginal attractions whose displacement would be more palatable.
Terminator still has popularity and in today's box office, worldwide box office matters more than domestic box office. Terminator is less of dud compared with some real turkeys. The main reason to keep it is foreign visitors who still will appreciate the story along with Transformers. These are movies that are increasingly made for foreign audiences including that of the new Mummy. So Universal should choose to prop up it's middling movies just like Disney does for Brave-Tangled-Pocohontas-Princess/Frog-Moana. They are all mild successes.
But James, the world-wide numbers are meaningless compared to a movie from 36 years ago, when the original Terminator played on maybe a hundred screens outside the US. There's been a massive shift in the international market lead by huge theater expansions in China and a thirst for American-made movies, often backed by Chinese investors. Frequently these big international numbers are not indicative of a movie's popularity (even overseas) or future sequels' success because audiences in the Eastern Hemisphere are gobbling up anything coming from Hollywood, which is why Asian and Middle Eastern financiers are pumping so much cash into the international marketing of movies right now. Long story short, you could release "Craptacular Forty-Deuce: The Movement to End All Sequels" today in China, and it would still rake in hundreds of millions of dollars if backed by the right distributor(s). It doesn't mean people like the movie, the Craptacular franchise, will buy merch, or be drawn to attractions themed around the movie, it just means the billions of people that live in China and other Asian countries have just discovered the magic of movies. Like a kid getting their first Matchbox car, they play with it and want to keep collecting more and more until they realize it's a fool's errand to keep up. Serious collectors will stay with it as they grow up, but most kids will give up on the toy and move onto something more interesting. China's movie market is still in its infancy, but at some point the market will either become saturated (tough to imagine with a literally "captive" audience of billions) or discerning tastes become more prominent in steering "better" movies to market.
Russell, I am not disagreeing with your breakdown of the business side of box office receipts. But that business is all about the bottom line, and nothing you are telling me changes the fact that the last Terminator movie was the second highest grossing film in the series. Also, if I am reading your posts and the other posts in this discussion correctly, everyone seems to be saying that if someone made a GOOD Terminator film (if Cameron resurrected the franchise) it would be a big hit. Which tells me the market is still there for this IP, that it has NOT fallen out of favor, as you put it.
That brings me to another point. Disney announced earlier this week that they will be pulling all of their content from Netflix in 2019 to migrate to their new streaming service. Other media conglomerates appear to be doing the same thing by holding onto what they own/control instead of licensing out to other distributors/outlets. So what you used to be able to watch with a single cable subscription, despite increasing costs, now requires dozens of individual subscriptions or users playing Russian Roulette to determine what services they subscribe to at a given time, spending more than even the most expensive cable service.
Well then, Universal better get busy buying companies - because they don't
I know. I think at some point Comcast and Time Warner are going to merge. Who buys whom isn't clear, but it's going to happen. Sony and Fox will then have to decide to join Disney or Comcast/TW or join forces to form their own conglomerate with the major video game companies hanging in the balance (Microsoft, Nintendo, and Atari). The biggest wild card will be Apple, and if they join with Disney, as some are predicting, it would create ripple effect just like all the colleges shuffling athletic conference affiliations over the past decade.
On a weather related note - I thought James lived in FL also we all know TH creative lives there...
Trexan maybe, but this James does not...thanks anyway, if you were talking about me. I live closer to Silver Dollar City than to Universal Studios! ;)
I do live in a five story apartment in Tampa that is fortunately clear of evacuation zones. I'm just worried about some friends who live in one story houses closer to the water.
Slightly off-topic, but as a UK resident I have to say the idea that worldwide box office didn't matter 30 years ago is complete rubbish. Oh sure, there was no China market or a fair bit of Asia but everywhere else was pretty bouyant. The claim the first Terminator film played on less than 100 screens outside the US is absurd - it played on 2 screens just in my small town and we only had 1 four-screen cinema!
"Do you think there is a high cost to license a few songs? In reality there isn't. There is only a very limited amount of content that commands high licensing fees."
"Do you think there is a high cost to license a few songs? In reality there isn't."
Ultimaterollercoaster, Universal is getting rid of T2 so they can stop paying fees and add a cheaper, in-house IP. That's it. Also, 50+ posts in this discussion thread alone provide some indication of T2's lasting appeal.
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