Saturday, February 13, 2016

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter In Previews at Universal Studios Hollywood

© Universal Studios Hollywood
The next chapter of Harry Potter in U.S. theme parks has begun, as previews of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter have started at Universal Studios Hollywood.

The new area has an official opening date of April 7th, but we all expected there to be a lengthy preview period for such a large addition.  This will allow Universal Studios Hollywood to do adjustments to the area as more and more crowds flow through it, testing the best ways to handle the crush of visitors during the upcoming Summer season.

As for the actual Wizarding World, well it's also as we expected - which is largely a copy of the original land in Florida's Islands of Adventure theme park.  The Hollywood version does have some changes that were incorporated into the Japan version when it opened in '14, so this really is Wizarding World 3.0 you could say.  Die hard fans will note small changes from the Florida original like the location of Ollivanders, the model of coaster used for Flight of the Hippogriff (it is a Mack this time around), and a Hogwarts Express photo op. created since the train can't be ridden in California.

You can count on a flood of content coming online now that previews have started, but to get your feet wet check out this story from Entertainment Weekly, and this piece at Inside Universal.