November 5, 2013 |
During a recent visit to Paris I made my first pilgrimage to a Disney theme park outside the United States. For years I have been reading about the majestic beauty of the Magic Kingdom-style park at Disneyland Paris, the dysfunctional violation of all things Disney that is Walt Disney Studios next door and the promise of what the future holds for both parks. TOP 10: Disneyland Paris | Walt Disney Studios So let's step back for a moment and take a long, hard look at what's right, wrong and next at the two theme parks serving as Disney's European outpost in France.
May 8, 2013 |
The eternal problem with Tomorrowland is that the commonplace reality of today inevitably catches up to and ultimately surpasses the ultramodern imagined future of yesterday. Disneyland's forward-looking land of tomorrow has seen many evolutions since opening day in 1955. Through the years, there have been major expansions in 1959 (Monorail), 1977 (Space Mountain) and 1986 (Star Tours) as well as complete makeovers in 1967 (New Tomorrowland) and 1998 (New New Tomorrowland). The current iteration has a retro-futuristic science fiction fantasy theme that was designed to be a bit more timeless but nonetheless is showing its age. Photos: Top 10 Tomorrowland rides of the past With the release of "Iron Man 3" and plans for "Star Wars" and "Tron" sequels in the works, I thought it would be a good time to do a bit of "blue sky" dreaming about what Walt Disney Imagineering might have in mind for the New New New Tomorrowland.
April 24, 2013 |
Fans of radio-station round-tables, norteño titans and pop stars on the make will have to find a new venue to see their favorites. The Gibson Amphitheatre in Universal City will close in September as part of a massive overhaul of Universal Studios. “We, like music lovers across Los Angeles, will miss Gibson Amphitheatre,” said Bret Gallagher, president of North American Concerts, Southern California/Las Vegas for Live Nation, in a statement today. “It is a tremendous venue with a uniquely intimate setting that has made it a very special place for fans and artists alike. The list of musicians that have played here is simply staggering...
September 2, 2013 |
Rather than a big new ride for 2014, Six Flags Magic Mountain will unveil several smaller attractions throughout the year. The Valencia amusement park will run a couple of coasters backward in the spring, add a kiddie coaster and a pair of water slides in the summer and expand its Halloween offerings in the fall. After introducing the Full Throttle looping launch coaster this year at Magic Mountain, it makes sense that Six Flags would spread the wealth to other locations in the amusement park chain in 2014.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 24, 2013 |
Goodbye Hogwarts, hello Universal Studios. After a bumpy 17-year process that once proposed developing thousands of homes on its famous Hollywood back lot, NBCUniversal won unanimous approval Tuesday from the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors for a plan that lets it expand its Universal Studios theme park. And a Harry Potter attraction is coming with it. Company executives said the "The Wizarding World of Harry Potter," which will feature a re-creation of the Hogwarts Castle and other locations from the books and movies, will bring droves of visitors to the park.
March 31, 2012 |
Hard-core Harry Potter fans who devoured the books, camped out for the movies and trekked through the theme park now have a new way to relive the boy wizard's adventures. PHOTOS: Making of Harry Potter studio tour Debuting Saturday, the Making of Harry Potter behind-the-scenes tour at theWarner Bros.studios in England will let wizards, mudbloods and muggles pull back the curtain on the movie-making secrets of the most successful film series of all time. Located 20 miles outside of London, the three-hour self-guided tour will take visitors past sets, props, costumes, models and special effects exhibits from the eight "Harry Potter" movies.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 20, 2013 |
Universal Studios Hollywood offers rides based on movies about rampaging dinosaurs, robot aliens, a 30-foot-tall gorilla and a green ogre with a sidekick donkey. Next up: a ride based on a movie about a super villain and three orphan girls. The theme park confirmed that it plans to open a ride based on the 2010 animated film "Despicable Me. " But it is too soon to release details, a spokeswoman for the park said. Universal Studio's sister park in Florida, Universal Studios Orlando, opened "Despicable Me: Minion Mayhem" last year.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 19, 2011 |
Universal Studios Orlando on Thursday announced plans to retheme its Jimmy Neutron's Nicktoon Blast attraction with a new " Despicable Me " story line, and to digitally refresh the Amazing Adventures ofSpider-Man motion-simulator ride for 2012. With no new attractions set for 2011, Universal continues to ride the "Wizarding World" wave of Pottermania, which has helped drive up attendance at the tandemFlorida theme parks by an astonishing 68% so far this year.
July 17, 2013 |
The first of 10 theme parks planned for a 2,000-acre resort billed as the "Orlando of China" is expected to open in late 2013 after three years of construction. The $2-billion marine-based Chimelong Ocean Kingdom theme park on Hengqin Island in China is to be connected by bridge to Macau and by ferry to Hong Kong. Chimelong Group already operates a resort about 75 miles northwest of Hong Kong, in Guangzhou, that includes the Chimelong Paradise theme park as well as a safari park, water park, crocodile farm and hotels.
June 2, 2013 |
I was overjoyed when I first heard SeaWorld San Diego was going to build an Aquatica water park. The original Aquatica at SeaWorld Orlando in Florida was an instant success, setting a new standard for excellence and excess in the water park industry when it opened in 2008. Today, Aquatica Orlando's combination of one-of-a-kind water slides and up-close animal interactions attracts 1.5 million visitors per year, making it one of the Top 10 water parks in the world . Photos: SeaWorld San Diego's Aquatica water park After a preview visit on Thursday, it pains me to say all Aquaticas are not created equal.