• 6 years ago

Middle-Earth Trademarked For Theme Park Use

To add some more fuel to rumor that Universal Orlando has a Lord of the Rings themed land or park in the works, the The Saul Zaentz Company has recently trademarked the term “Middle-Earth” for use in amusement/theme parks. For those unfamiliar with The Saul Zaentz Company, they own the worldwide film, stage, and merchandise rights to The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit. Therefor, in the same way Warner Brothers handles the Harry Potter/Wizarding World trademarks, The Saul Zaentz Company are the ones who handle the Lord of the Rings trademarks.

While a generic trademark application like this one is by no means confirmation of a coming themed land or park, it does show that the company has intent of using it’s Middle-Earth mark in the amusement/theme park sector someday. Right now though, there’s no way of knowing how soon, if ever, anything could come to fruition, or what parks, if any, the company is in talks with.

The full trademark is included below:

Middle-Earth Trademark
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    • 6 years ago

    Mardi Gras 2013 Lineup

    2013 Lineup:

    • February 9th, 2013 – Lifehouse
    • February 16th, 2013 – Steve Miller Band
    • February 17th, 2013 – Boys Like Girls
    • February 23rd, 2013 – Trey Songz
    • March 2nd, 2013 – Demi Lovato
    • March 9th, 2013 – Montgomery Gentry
    • March 15th, 2013 – Sean Kingston
    • March 16th, 2013 – Matchbox Twenty
    • March 22nd, 2013 – Austin Mahone
    • March 23rd, 2013 – Phillip Phillips
    • March 30th, 2013 – Pat Benatar
    • April 6th, 2013 – Kool & The Gang
    • April 13th, 2013 – Pitbull
    • April 20th, 2013 – The All-American Rejects
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      • 7 years ago

      Universal Patents New Water Park Technologies

      There have been rumors for quite some time now that Universal Studios was looking to build an on-site water park at its Orlando resort, and today, we might have our first glimpse at some of the new technologies they’re looking to incorporate with the rumored project. New patents published this month show off three interesting concepts; an “articulated waterslide”, a multi-directional wavepool, and “beach visual effects”.


      Articulated Waterslide

      The first patent, for an articulated waterslide, details a new waterslide concept “that is flexible or articulated at one or more locations such that features of the waterslide can be maneuvered into different arrangements to provide a variety of flow paths. “ This concept offers many possibilities; for example, a waterslide built with multiple articulation segments and multiple paths could theoretically offer a different ride experience each time. Alternatively, a specific themed waterslide could be built with both “wild” and “mild” paths, and the rider could select which path they’d like to take, that way everyone could experience that particular themed slide, no matter their thrill preference. It’s definitely an interesting concept, and one I’d totally love to see executed in the near future. Included below are a few example drawings, and you can download and read the full patent by clicking here: Articulated Waterslide Patent.


      Multi-Directional Wavepool

      The next patent’s title is pretty self-explanatory. It details a method for creating a wavepool with multi-directional waves. As the patent describes, this would allow for the creation of a circular wavepool, with waves being generated from the center and expanding outwards in all directions. The patent also discusses the possibility of different wave types being generated in different sections of the pool, so guests could choose their preferred wave type and stay in that section, or swim around and experience them all. Special wave types, like spiral waves, would also be possible with this configuration. A massive, circular wavepool would be an excellent centerpiece for a new water park. You can download and read the full patent by clicking here: Multi-Directional Wavepool Patent.


      Beach Visual Effects

      The final new patent details different visual effects that could be created in a water park beach environment using different sand materials and/or lighting effects from below the beach surface. Examples included multi-colored or rainbow beaches, an illuminated or back-lit beach, or the creation of different shapes or patterns. Special iridescent or phosphorescent sands could also be used to create a visually interesting beach. These concepts would definitely be an exciting way to spruce up the typical, mundane water park beach environment, and could allow for some pretty elaborate effects and themed beach areas. Below are two example drawings from the patent, which can be downloaded by clicking here: Beach Visual Effects Patent.


      Overall, these seem to be some pretty unique and interesting new water park concepts, and pretty much right on par with what we’ve come to expect from the creative minds at Universal. Hopefully we see these ideas implemented in a future water park project, and hopefully that project is for Universal Orlando Resort. What do you think of these patents? Be sure to leave your comments in the comment section below!

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        • 7 years ago

        First Look at Cabana Bay Resort Layout

        A new document filed with the Orange County Comptroller today shows off a master plan view of Universal’s 4th hotel, Cabana Bay Beach Resort. While the scan of the plans isn’t very detailed, it still gives us an excellent overview of the resort’s layout.

        To the north of the property are the three buildings, A, B, and C. These three buildings consist of phase 1 of the resort’s construction and will likely contain the family suites. In the middle of these three buildings is a large pool, which we saw in the concept art released with the resort’s announcement, as well as various other amenities.

        On the other side of these buildings is what appears to be the very large hotel lobby/main building, which was also shown off in concept art. Then, jutting out of that building in an interesting zig-zag pattern is what looks like the remaining two buildings of the resort, likely to contain the standard guest rooms. It’s hard to tell from this image, but it looks like there could also be a pool or some kind of recreation area in the middle of these two buildings as well.

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          • 7 years ago

          2012 HHNRumors Shirt Now on Sale!

          Back by popular demand, it’s the 2012 edition of the HHNRumors shirt! This year’s shirt was designed by the amazing pixelb.us, and features a glow in the dark zombie. Shirts are $20, with free shipping to anywhere in the US. International shipping is just $5. Head on over to the ParkRumors Store to place your order now! Shirts will ship as soon as they’re available, and are likely to arrive (in the USA) by opening night.

          Park Rumors Store:

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            • 7 years ago

            HHN 22 Revealed!

            Today Universal Orlando has updated the HalloweenHorrorNights.com website with the houses, shows, and scarezones that will be featured at this year’s event. From the looks of it we’ll have seven houses, six roaming scarezones, and two shows, which we’ll detail below.

            HAUNTED HOUSES

            AMC’s “The Walking Dead”
            There is strength in numbers, and you must band together to make it through many of the iconic settings made famous by the critically-acclaimed AMC television series, “The Walking Dead.” As the city is crawling with hordes of walkers, the issue of your becoming one of them is not a question of if, but when.

            Silent Hill
            In the eerie and desolate town of Silent Hill, ash falls from the sky and the physical laws of nature no longer apply. If you dare to venture into this alternate dimension, there is only one law of nature with which you must concern yourself: survival.

            Penn & Teller New(kd) Las Vegas
            World-renowned magicians Penn & Teller have accidentally nuked Las Vegas, but don’t worry, it’s nothing a fresh coat of paint and a truckload of BS can’t fix. Come on down to New Vegas, where all that glitters isn’t gold, and in fact probably has fatal levels of radioactivity.

            Alice Cooper – Welcome To My Nightmare
            Journey into the legendary rocker Alice Cooper’s twisted mind and witness the natural melding of horror and Cooper’s four decades-long career. Here you will follow Steven, the iconic character from many of Cooper’s works, as you come face-to-face with a myriad of tormentors who threaten an already-decaying sense of sanity.

            House of Horrors
            This is no remake. No sequel. No re-imagining. These are Universal’s classic monsters of fear, who have terrified audiences from the Silver Screen. They have been waiting within silver celluloid to be resurrected. The flash of a lightning strike cuts the darkness that surrounds, and terror’s true faces take back what is theirs.

            Dead End
            If enough people believe in something, perception can become reality. In Carey, Ohio, the perception was that countless horrific acts had occurred in the old Hartford Mansion. The reality was that the curse which befell the house was far worse than any story ever told.

            The Catedral de Caementum Animus is, by day, undergoing a building-wide architectural refurbishment. By night, the many stone gargoyles that keep watchful eye over the sanctuary come to life with the mission of protecting this sacred place against intrusion.


            Legions of Horror
            With a ripping, clawing and tearing through the concrete beneath Universal Studios come ancient cemetery Structures, spilling blood-raged, vampiric hordes that span the eras of time, barbaric warriors with a need to carve flesh from bone and an all-female, chainsaw-wielding prison gang. These and more nightmarish hellions inhabit every dark corner, foggy recess and shadowed path within the park. Unlike in years past, there are no boundaries. No safezones. No one escapes.

            The force of horror starts with The Iniquitus. Rooted in evil, these are the patrons of death and are the ones who rose from the cemetery. The Iniquitus are those who summoned the Dark Legions to come and feast here.

            The dark legions of horror that await are: Vampires – the blood-thirsty from all eras of time, Beasts – the legendary animal-like figures who prey on the unsuspecting, Warriors – a gang killed in a deadly war that has returned to seek revenge, Prisoners – these deceased chainsaw-wielding female inmates killed in a women’s prison fire are back… and angry, and Traditionals – the ghosts and goblins of Halloween past come together to feast.

            LIVE SHOWS

            Bill & Ted’s Excellent Halloween Adventure
            Party on as those two most excellent dudes return to skewer the biggest names in entertainment and pop culture.

            20 Penny Circus
            The 20 Penny Circus brings its “Magic For People With Questionable Taste” to an unsuspecting Halloween Horror Nights audience.


            The full press release for this year’s event is available on Universal Orlando’s media website, or you can read about everything on the Halloween Horror Nights 22 website. Be sure to leave your thoughts about this year’s event in the comment section below, or on the ParkRumors forums!

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              • 7 years ago

              Legoland Florida 2013 – Pirates Expansion

              New documents filed with the South West Florida Water Management District last month have revealed Legoland Florida’s 2013 expansion plans: a new section of the park dubbed “Pirate Shores”. The documents detail the new area, which will occupy roughly 1.6 acres of land located just behind the main entrance, and feature two new attractions, two new water playgrounds, and a smattering of  games, retail and food offerings. For those familiar with Legoland California, you’ll notice that this new area borrows heavily from that park’s pirate themed land of the same name.

              For starters, the existing Fire Brigade attraction will be slightly relocated to make room for a pathway leading to the main entrance of “Pirate Shores”. The area’s main attraction will be a Splash Battle boat ride, which, as we mention above, will likely be very similar to the one located at Legoland California. It’s also worth noting that the Legoland parks in both Billund and Deutschland also feature a pirate themed splash battle attraction. The other attraction looks like it will be called “Captain Cranky’s Challenge”, which is also a Legoland California attraction.

              The two water playgrounds also appear to be coming from Legoland California, and will each cater to a different age demographic. The area labled “Interactive Play” on the plans below looks to be a copy of the “Soak~N~Sail” area, which is aimed at the older kids and features slides and tons of interactive water features. Swabbie’s Deck is aimed at the toddlers, and will likely have water jets and squirt cannons, much like its California counterpart.

              And finally, rounding out the area is a small strip of buildings featuring food and beverages, a small games area, a retail store, changing rooms, and restrooms.

              Overall, even though the area is basically a carbon copy of the “Pirate Shores” from Legoland California, it’s still a welcome addition to the new Florida park, which has yet to turn a year old. Be sure to leave any comments in the comment section below, or on our Facebook page or Forums!

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                • 7 years ago

                Do You Dare Enter Trickster’s Garden as Howl-O-Scream 2012 Celebrates an Unlucky 13 Years?

                Florida’s favorite Halloween event entices guests to “Unlock the Fear Inside”
                as they explore what grows inside the Dark Side of the Gardens’ gate.

                TAMPA, Fla. (August 15, 2012)  This fall, Howl-O-Scream 2012 lures unsuspecting victims to explore the terror that grows behind the Dark Side of the Gardens’ gate and “Unlock the Fear Inside.” As Florida’s top-rated Halloween event celebrates its unlucky 13th year, it just may be your own curiosity that seals your fate!
                Busch Gardens’ 335 acres will be overgrown with dark, sinister, adult-targeted fun, including new haunted houses, scare zones, thrilling live stage shows and the chance to ride adrenaline-fueled coasters in the dark, including Florida’s first triple-launch coaster, Cheetah Hunt. Even the streets themselves aren’t safe as insatiable hoards of devious creatures pour forth from the shadows, led by a terrifying Trickster who is scheming to show fans the most horrifying Howl-O-Scream ever. It will leave you begging for mercy… and screaming for more.
                From 13 sinister superstitions to the claustrophobic halls of an insane asylum, Howl-O-Scream 2012’s new haunted houses are designed to touch every aspect of your deepest fears:
                • NEW!  Blood Asylum – As lightning rages and thunder crashes outside, “The Creature” escapes from his holding cell in a high-security asylum for the criminally insane. Now this sadistic deviant is running rampant, skinning his former cellmates and turning the mental hospital into his own torture chamber. This serial killer’s bloody playground will drive you out of your mind with fear.
                • NEW!  Circus of Superstition 3-DYou’ve tried to avoid black cats and sidewalk cracks, but Trickster will make sure that all those years of bad luck catch up with you! Under his command, crazed circus clowns challenge you to survive 13 superstitions in their 3-D Tent of Terror, but it will take more than luck to escape this whole new dimension of fear
                Some of the most demented houses ever are back by popular demand with some horrible new twists:
                • Ultimate Gamble: CONDEMNED – Vampires have fallen out of vogue and the Ultimate Gamble casino has been shut down.  The power is off, and the neon signs that once lit up the sky have gone out.  Only the bravest guests dare visit the empty carcass of the once-vibrant casino, grabbing their flashlights to “enter at their own risk.”
                • Nightshade Toy Factory: MUTATION – The old Nightshade Toy Factory has long been patrolled by diabolical dolls, terrible teddy bears and possessed playthings, but recent containment issues at a nearby nuclear facility have started to affect these terrible toys. Now, the mutations will stop at nothing to devour the humans that have “enslaved” them for so long.
                • Nevermore – Beating hearts, swinging pendulums and a raven’s cries haunt the manor of Lenore, creating a demented and twisted nightmare. Step inside to experience the gothic terror that maddens the lord of the house. and feel delusion overcome reality. Find your way out of this horror story before paranoia authors your final chapter.
                • Zombie Mortuary – No one remembers how the epidemic started, but now, zombies live here. The undead that infest this small town funeral home feed on the fresh flesh and brains of mortuary mourners to satisfy their insatiable hunger. Avoid the walking dead or you may find yourself deeper than six feet under.
                • Alone… (A personal experience in horror) – The deranged Master Alexander Daedalus opened Minotaur Storage to house his vast collection of “cultural” remains. But now his sinister obsession with hoarding has expanded to stockpiling people. Escape this lunatic’s labyrinth or you will become part of his collection. Can you make it out ALONE?Note: Alone is a unique, all-alone experience through the haunted house for an additional fee. Reservations are required, and each reservation can accommodate you and up to 3 additional victims. Pass member discount does not apply.  Not included with any other VIP tour or upgrade product.  Howl-O-Scream admission is required, but not included. 
                At Howl-O-Scream, even the sidewalks aren’t safe from the things that go bump in the night.

                ALL NEW scare zones and bands of roaming hordes will keep guests watching their backs as they explore 335 acres of fright:
                • Faded Memories – Thirteen years of horror-filled memories come swarming back as the most sinister icons, diabolical characters and disturbing scenes from your favorite Howl-O-Scream haunted houses and scare zones from the past converge to create the ultimate “best of” scrapbook of scares.
                After braving bone-chilling coasters in the dark such as Cheetah Hunt, SheiKra, Montu, Gwazi and Kumba, you can catch your breath at Howl-O-Scream’s signature show, Fiends.
                NEW THIS YEAR, Fiends will be performing nightly at the Desert Grill in Timbuktu. Captivating creatures of the night will infect you with dance fever and keep your pulse pounding with their deranged dance party. But when Dr. Freakenstein’s naughty nurses start operating, the diagnosis is always “code pink.”
                Looking for a sick party or the perfect souvenir to round out your evening of evil?
                • CLUB XIII – Escape the hordes and head to the transformed Marrakesh Theater to drive yourself mad partying at Howl-O-Scream’s exclusive dance club.  This adults-only nighttime playground keeps the energy pumping all night long with non-stop music, premium signature cocktails, drink specials and exclusive appearances by Howl-O-Scream’s most terrifying personalities.
                • Howl-O-Scream Shop of Horrors – Remember your evening of undead excitement with a Tricky trinket that’s not for the faint of heart.
                The event runs Thursday through Saturday nights, Sept. 27-29, Oct. 4-6, 11-13, 18-20 and 25-27.  Freaky Preview lets devoted fans experience the event a week early on Sept. 21-22. Operating hours are 7:30 p.m. to 1 a.m. during Freaky Preview and on Thursday nights. Friday and Saturday hours are 7:30 p.m. to 2 a.m.
                General admission is $79.99 plus tax. Reduced advance-purchase rates and special offers are available for Busch Gardens pass members at TheDarkSideOfTheGardens.com. A $35 savings on general admission tickets is available in advance at participating Publix Supermarkets and AAA locations or with promotional codes found at participating Taco Bell and Applebee’s locations in Central Florida.
                Take advantage of the best way to see Howl-O-Scream with all-inclusive VIP Packages, which include event admission, a tour guide and your choice of three levels of terrifying special treatment: The Super experience is a three-hour group tour of haunted houses that includes front-of-the-line access. The five-hour Mega experience adds reserved show seating, front-of-the-line access to several roller coasters and preferred parking, and the Ultimate experience adds the Fright Feast dinner buffet, meet and greet with the Howl-O-Scream creative team and a $5 games card. All tours include commemorative photos, merchandise discounts and complimentary beverages. Packages start at $81, and pass member discounts are available.
                For those who prefer to self-guide themselves through the event but want the front-of-the-line perks, there’s the Front Line Fear pass for $35, which grants no-wait access to seven houses, excluding Alone. The Front Line Fear Extreme pass ups the access and also lets guests skip the line at five freaky coasters for $50.
                The Thrills & Chills Weekend Pass lets true Halloween fans face their fears over and over again with a long weekend (Thursday through Sunday) of unlimited access to Busch Gardens’ thrills by day and Howl-O-Scream’s chills by night – all for just $79.99! Or, if you need to keep your adrenaline pumping all month long, the Recurring Nightmare Pass offers unlimited Howl-O-Scream visits on Thursday and Friday nights for just $79.99 (available only at the ticket windows.)
                For out-of-town guests, Wicked Weekend Vacation Packages include Howl-O-Scream admission for two, plus one-night accommodations at one of Busch Gardens’ preferred partner hotels. Prices start at $89 per adult, tax inclusive, based on double occupancy. Stay two nights as part of the Thrills and Chills Weekend Package, and get in to Busch Gardens day and night, and enjoy two nights of accommodations. Prices start at $175 per adult, tax inclusive.
                And if there’s one thing worse than being terrified, it’s being terrified on an empty stomach. Fright Feast is the most deranged dinner show in town, featuring a buffet of monstrous main courses and devilish desserts, plus an exclusive performance of Fiends. Fright Feast guests are also the first to brave the dark with a half-hour of early access to the all-new haunted houses and front-of-line privileges until 8:30 p.m. Fright Feast is $26 per person, with group rates and discounts for pass and Fun Card members available.
                Howl-O-Scream is a separate ticketed night event. No costumes are allowed. For guest information, visit TheDarkSideOfTheGardens.com or call 1-888-800-5447.
                Howl-O-Scream is intended for a mature audience. This year’s event contains intense adult content such as violence, gore and blood.
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                  • 7 years ago

                  HHN 22 Permit Update: Parade Building

                  A new HHN permit was filed last week, finally filling the void left by the withdrawn permit for the BLDG44 house. Ironically enough, however, for its first few days in the system, the permit still had its location (incorrectly) listed as “BLD44 HERC&XENA”. But now that the permit has started its review process, the location has been updated to B79, the parade building.

                  As the permit review process continues, we’ll hopefully find out a few scene names, much like we did with some of the previous permits. We’ll also hopefully find out if this is an entirely new house, or just the same house that was intended for BLD44 reconfigured to fit in the parade building.

                  This also brings our house total back up to seven, with houses located in the following places:

                  • Sound stage 20A
                  • Sound stage 20B
                  • Sound stage 22
                  • Disaster Queue
                  • Parade Building
                  • Sprung 1
                  • Sprung 2
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                    • 7 years ago

                    Look Back: Royal Pacfic Resort

                    With Universal’s new onsite hotel, Cabana Bay Beach Resort soon to be built on “Hotel Tract G”, we thought it would be fun to take a Look Back at the hotel originally planned for that site: Universal’s Royal Pacific Resort.

                    Loews Royal Pacific Resort opened in 2001 as Universal Orlando’s third onsite resort, situated on a plot of land right off Universal Blvd. But the resort wasn’t initially intended to be built there. The resort was originally going to occupy the 70+ acre plot of land off Turkey Lake road, and have a much more sprawling layout. Plans filed with the SFWMD in October of 1999 detailed this layout, one that featured seven hotel buildings, a large outdoor recreation area, multiple pools, and a much larger convention center. A modification was later filed in August of 2000, which placed the hotel on the plot of land it sits on today, and dramatically reduced its size and layout.

                    Included below are the plans for the original Royal Pacific Resort, as well as a colored overlay to give you a better understanding of its layout. And, for more coverage of Universal’s past hotel projects, be sure to check out our Look Back articles on Universal’s Royal Egyptian Resort and Universal’s Silverscreen Resort.

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