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California Briefing / Los Angeles

Burned sets get ready to reopen

February 04, 2009|Ann M. Simmons

Most of the movie sets that were ravaged at Universal Studios Hollywood in an accidental fire last June will reopen this summer, studio officials said Tuesday.

The rebuilt sets will include the famed Courthouse Square featured in the movie "Back to the Future," along with Brownstone Street and an upgraded New York Street. New locations being introduced this year will include a gas station, a firehouse, a London street and a contemporary cityscape featuring glass and steel facades, Universal officials said.

Officials said studio tours had been upgraded with high-definition digital servers and flat-screen monitors that will give visitors an improved behind-the-scenes look at a working studio environment.

There was no immediate word about the popular 30-foot mechanical King Kong that was also destroyed.

Most of the studios' famous standing sets and locations, such as the set used in "The War of the Worlds" and Wisteria Lane from "Desperate Housewives," were untouched by the fire, which investigators said was accidentally ignited while Universal workers were conducting repairs. Nine firefighters and a sheriff's deputy were hurt in the blaze.

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