Universal to introduce streaming service with theme park event

December 18, 2019, 3:23 PM · Universal Studios Hollywood will help launch a publicity push for corporate parent NBCUniversal's new streaming video service with a two-day, hard-ticket event at the park.

Peacock Live will take over the backlot of Universal Studios Hollywood on March 28 and 29. The event will include a preview of Peacock - the new streaming service - with celebrity panels, meet and greets and giveaways. The event also will feature a sneak peek at the new Trolls movie, Trolls World Tour, a "family friendly" American Ninja Warrior course for visitors to try, special demonstrations of new Olympic sports skateboarding and sport climbing, and photo ops including the red chairs from NBC's "The Voice."

Early bird two-day tickets start at $159 and include admission to Universal Studios Hollywood after 12 noon each day. A Premium Pass costs $299 and includes early access to the backlot as well as priority seating and access during the event. Peacock Live continues after park close until midnight each evening.

Universal earlier this month announced another hard-ticket event themed to an NBCUniversal property - Bravo's Top Chef Food & Wine Festival. That event is happening a week earlier than the Peacock Live event, on March 19-20.

The big competition for Peacock is, of course, rival Disney's Disney+ streaming service, which launched last month. Both services are designed to protect their studios from cord-cutting viewers canceling their cable or satellite TV subscriptions in favor of alternate services such as Netflix and Amazon Prime. The stakes are even higher for NBCUniversal since it's owned by Comcast, which obviously stands to lose the most from cord-cutting.

Disney did not do too much to leverage its theme parks to promote the launch of Disney+, but NBCUniversal is going bigger - at least in Hollywood, where many celebrities live just a short limo ride away from the park. Universal Studios Hollywood promises more details about the launch event as the date draws nearer. NBC has not yet confirmed an official start date for Peacock, but it's probably coming not long after this event, as the network will want to capitalize on the publicity it surely expects the event to generate.

Replies (1)

December 19, 2019 at 7:30 AM

Admission to this event is too expensive for a streaming service with very little content. Make the tickets $99 max, and still include park admission after 12pm. What is Universal planning to stream on their service anyways? I haven't seen any advertising for much original programming. I hope it doesn't fall flat. Disney+ has struck gold with 'The Mandalorian' and potential Marvel original shows.
May the battle between the 2 theme park juggernauts continue to thrive as it benefits us the consumers.

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