UNIVERSAL ORLANDO RESORT REVEALS FIRST-EVER DETAILS ABOUT
HARRY POTTER AND THE ESCAPE FROM GRINGOTTS – THE HIGHLY-ANTICIPATED ATTRACTION IN THE WIZARDING WORLD OF HARRY POTTER – DIAGON ALLEY
Grand Opening Date for The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley to be Announced at a Later Date
ORLANDO, Fla. (May 13, 2014) – Today, Universal Orlando Resort revealed details about Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts – the revolutionary attraction found in the heart of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Diagon Alley. The Grand Opening date for the spectacularly themed environment will be announced at a later date.
Imagine being part of the iconic moment from the Harry Potter film series where Harry, Ron and Hermione break into one of the most guarded places in the wizarding world – Gringotts bank – to retrieve a magical object that will help defeat Lord Voldemort. You’ve seen the action on-screen, and now you get to be part of it.
Universal’s creative team worked hand-in-hand with Stuart Craig and his production team from the Harry Potter films to immerse guests in this pivotal scene from the final Harry Potter book and film.
During an action-packed, fully-immersive journey on Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts, you will:
- Marvel at the 60-foot, fire-breathing Ukrainian Ironbelly dragon atop Gringotts Wizarding Bank
- Tour Gringotts bank and pass through the marble hall where you’ll see goblins hard at work
- Race through a labyrinth of underground Gringotts vaults
- Encounter the villainous Death Eater, Bellatrix Lestrange, as she attempts to send you to your doom
- Come face to face with He Who Must Not Be Named
- Experience even more mind-blowing moments
The multi-dimensional, multi-sensory attraction, Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts, will revolutionize theme park entertainment. This next generation thrill ride seamlessly integrates a compilation of the most innovative technology ever created, 360-degree themed sets, 4K digital high-definition animation, state-of-the-art 3-D Infitec projection systems and live special effects with beloved characters and breathtaking moments from the Harry Potter books and films.
“Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts will change the way you think about theme park attractions,” said Mark Woodbury, president of Universal Creative. “We’ve created an entirely new type of ride that propels guests into the story like never before, and guests will remember it long after their visit to Diagon Alley.”
The Wizarding World of Harry Potter - Diagon Alley will bring even more of Harry Potter’s adventures to life. The new area will double the size of the sweeping land already found at Universal Orlando, expanding the spectacularly themed environment across both Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure. Inside the land, guests will enjoy themed shops, dining experiences and the groundbreaking thrill ride – Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts.
For additional information about The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, visit http://www.UniversalOrlando.com/WizardingWorld.
And check out this video, too!
Another article: http://www.bizjournals.com/orlando/blog/2014/05/death-eaters-dragons-goblins-your-insider-guide-to.html?page=all
Trolls, dragons, Death Eaters and He Who Must Not Be Named!
Have I got your attention? Well, those are some of the things Universal Orlando Resort guests will see on the new Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts ride at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter-Diagon Alley.
I talked to Universal Creative's Thierry Coup on what guests can expect on the main ride at the upcoming expansion — which has yet to reveal its summer opening date, but will provide a key economic boost to Central Florida's $50 billion tourism and travel industry.
"Gringotts, I always said after watching the first film, was a ride waiting to happen. Everybody would say we had to do a ride on this," he told me.
The ride's story kicks off during the events of the final Harry Potter book where (spoilers) Harry, Ron and Hermione are searching the labyrinths — sans creepy David Bowie — of Gringotts Wizarding Bank to find a tool, called a "Horcrux," to defeat Lord Voldemort.
It just happens Muggle guests — that's you and me — are entering the marble halls of Gringotts at the same time looking to open new accounts when we are thrown into the mix of a magical battle between Harry and his friends and tons of dangers. That includes a 60-foot, fire-breathing Ukranian Ironbelly dragon atop the bank.
"You will run into some serious trouble because [Death Eater] Bellatrix Lestrange finds out there are imposters trying to impersonate her and trouble starts. That's when we are sent deeper into the lower parts of Gringotts under London, and we run into security trolls, dragons, Bellatrix and, eventually, the dark Lord Voldemort," Coup said.
The dark coaster ride takes about four minutes and each car fits 12 people. However, he said the experience starts in the pre-show where guests will interact and see the goblins of Gringotts working hard at counting the contents of their vaults.
In addition, guests will see a marriage of animatronics and special effects, 360-degree themed sets, cutting-edge digital animation and 3-D projections all together at once in the ride to truly understand the magic Harry and his friends experienced in the movies.
The opening date for The Wizarding World of Harry Potter has yet to be announced, but it is expected to happen sometime this June and will have a major economic return for tourism businesses.
And yet another article:
Slashfilm also has a VERY interesting article with a few more details:
I took note of this part, though:
The Unexpected Second Ride in This Attraction: The Gringotts Elevators
The Gringotts ride is not the only ride guests will take inside this attraction. Guests will board a set of elevators which will take them down “30,000 feet to the subterranean Gringotts vaults.” Gilmore says these elevators are a ride in themselves:
Thats a very cool trick that Universal has designed with the filmmakers — where you actually ride elevators. They are really cool elevators, and thats a really cool show in its own right. You arrive in a little station in the caverns where you board your car.
That description of the elevators and the boarding area could be word for word how I would describe Journey to the Center of the Earth at Tokyo DisneySea. Not that that's a bad thing, but I guess I hope it plays out a bit more "original" and different than that, you know?
And Universal now seems to be backing off on calling it a "roller coaster"
Don’t Call It a Roller Coaster — Its a Completely New Ride System
12 guests will board a car on tracks for the four-minute long Harry Potter and Escape from Gringotts ride, but Universal Orlando officials are refusing to call the attraction a “roller coaster.”
Its a new system, it replicates the tracks below Gringotts from the movie — you feel like you’re on those tracks spiraling around. Because the ride is fully 3D, the scenery is very big in this one, the 3D screens are much bigger than normal, so its a new way to pass through a ride. Its a whole new system. You can go very quickly. You go various speeds, and there are scenes and you pick up many moments from the story. When you’re going at high speeds it can be very exciting. The whole thing is quite new.
The ride also features new projector technology and a nearly 360-degree screen which will help immerse riders in the story at one point.
And apparently Universal have released the height restriction for the ride: 42" aimed at being a little more of a "family ride" than Forbidden Journey.