Published: January 22, 2014 at 2:44 PMSounds fantastic. I agree about the train ride aspect, I dont have a great feel for how that will play out. The other big worry would be wait times for getting on the train. If it isnt somewhat swift people will just say forget it and just walk around to the other entrance. Should be interesting.
Also Disney... are you seeing this!?!?....hello!?
Published: January 22, 2014 at 3:02 PMI don't understand the date restrictions of Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley. I don't think it matters. The buildings are supposed to be timeless (old). The moment in time may suggest the narrow experiences in the book, but why not look beyond a mere story plot.
I guess the latest developments are interesting to behold. What's missing is what I regard as Disney style filler that keeps people in the park. Meet and greets, walkabout characters, shows, nighttime spectaculars.
Published: January 22, 2014 at 5:15 PMOMG! TPI just keeps getting bigger and better. I was blown away by this column by Marc! It got me so bumped to hear more about this expansion. Along with all of Robert Niles' excellent reports and the terrific columns by Amanda Jenkins (whom I hope writes a new one soon!), I hope Marc becomes a regular feature here. I LOVE his stuff!
Published: January 22, 2014 at 6:08 PM7. One thing to consider is that Universal didn't announce the original opening date until March 2010 and that project had three years in the making. Given the accelerated schedule for Diagon Alley, getting an opening date tomorrow might be a bit of a stretch. We'll probably just hear an expected time frame.
4. While it seems like Gringotts itself will be set during Deathly Hallows, I can't ever imagine Universal opting to feature Diagon Alley to be the desolate wasteland it appeared during that time. I'm willing to bet that they'll just feature it the way it appeared in Sorceror's Stone and Chamber of Secrets while adding in places like Weasley's.
Published: January 23, 2014 at 10:49 AM@Annette: Thank you so incredibly much for your kind words. I'm currently averaging one post per year for TPI, as most of my energies go to my weekly gigs: Orlando Informer and HuffPost. I'll try to crank up that rate to every six months, though. =)
@James: Excellent analysis. I actually couldn't agree more with you.
Published: January 23, 2014 at 8:04 AMGreat roundup Marc!