Universal Orlando Resort (USO, IOA) Discussion Thread

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Universal Orlando Resort (USO, IOA) Discussion Thread

Postby Homer » Wed May 25, 2005 8:33 am

Hey everybody!

This thread is simple! Rather than having a million little threads about everything that goes on at the Universal Orlando Resort, this thread is designed to consolidate it all into one user-friendly thread. Feel free to use it to post updates, trip reports, questions, comments, and of course, general discussion. For pictures and videos of the park as well as past updates, see TPR's Park Index Pages: Universal Studios Florida & Universal Studios Islands of Adventure

Official Park Website

Below are some links to past updates from the park, you may be interested in. Enjoy!


March 2005 - Nickelodeon Studios to leave Orlando - SEE BELOW!

September 1st, 2006 - Blue Man Group coming to Universal?
September 7th, 2006 - Confirmation that Back to the Future is closing

February 1st, 2007 - Harry Potter coming to IOA
March, 7th, 2007 - Concept art for Blue Man Group
March 12th, 2007 - Back to the Future's final day announced as March 30th
April 7th, 2007 - Universal confirms budget for 2007 is $120 Million
May 31st, 2007 - The Wizarding World of Harry Potter announced
November 5th, 2007 - Earthquake closes at Universal Studios

January 14th, 2008 - Universal Orlando gets approval for Maurer Sohne's "Project Rumble Ride Project"
Mar 18th, 2008 - Hollywood Rip, Ride, Rockit Announced (Hidden Song List Revealed)
Mar 22nd, 2008 - Rising Star opens at Universal Orlando's City Walk
June 19th, 2008 - Hollywood Rip, Ride, Rockit layout revealed
October 30th, 2008 - Hollywood Rip, Ride, Rockit construction update
November 18th, 2008 - Poseiden's Fury's "Water Vortex" feature shut down
November 25th, 2008 - More Hollywood Rip, Ride, Rockit construction progress
November 28th, 2008 - Additional Hollywood Rip, Ride, Rockit concept art leaked
December 30th, 2008 - Hollywood Rip, Ride, Rockit lift & station construction goes vertical

February 2nd, 2009 - Universal gives away 100,000 tickets on Superbowl Sunday
February 5th, 2009 - Universal cutting hours at some attractions
February 12th, 2009 - More Hollywood Rip, Ride, Rockit trackwork completed
February 23rd, 2009 - Hollywood Rip, Ride, Rockit lift construction rises
March 6th, 2009 - Hollywood Rip, Ride, Rockit non-inverting loop construction begins
March 12th, 2009 - Significant amount of Hollywood Rip, Ride, Rockit track work completed
March 18th, 2009 - Universal and Royal Caribbean form partnership
April 5th, 2009 - Another Hollywood Rip, Ride, Rockit update
April 29th, 2009 - Hollywood Rip, Ride, Rockit lift hill complete?
June 4th, 2009 - Hollywood Rip, Ride, Rockit animated POV released
June 6th, 2009 - Hollywood Rip, Ride, Rockit lift being removed
June 24th, 2009 - Hollywood Rip, Ride, Rockit lift complete, testing begins
June 25th, 2009 - Halloween Horror Nights 'Ripped from the Silver Screen' announced!
July 6th, 2009 - Hollywood Rip, Ride, Rockit official song list released
July 7th, 2009 - Halloween Horror Nights 'Ripped from the Silver Screen' logo released
July 24th, 2009 - Hollywood Rip, Ride, Rockit ringy dingy ding-a-ling dings installed
August 15th, 2009 - Hollywood Rip, Ride, Rockit soft opening review
August 24th, 2009 - Official Halloween Horror Nights Facebook Page launched
August 27th, 2009 - Halloween Horror Nights Saw & more details revealed
September 8th, 2009 - More HHN 19 details revealed
September 17th, 2009 - HHN 19 Dracula & Frankenstein house details
September 22nd, 2009 - HHN 19 The Usher background details revealed
September 23rd, 2009 - HHN 19 partners with Fangoria for two houses
September 24th, 2009 - HHN 19 Blood Day!
September 26th, 2009 - HHN 19 Media Preview Reviews
October 28th, 2009 - HHN 19 Sting Alley HHNXX Preview Scare Zone "Shadows of the Past"

July 14th, 2010 - Halloween Horror Nights XX: Twenty Years of Fear announced
August 2nd, 2010 - Halloween Horror Nights Legendary Truth Collective returns!
August 13th, 2010 - HHNXX house teaser images released
August 25th, 2010 - HHNXX full details released!
August 26th, 2010 - HHNXX conference call details
November 28th, 2010 - Universal Orlando VP, Jan Stratton dead

January 1st, 2011 - Universal's Islands of Adventure Ripsaw Falls is on Fire!!!
March 16th, 2011- Blackstone to sell its stake in Universal Orlando
July 19th, 2011- The Thing house confirmed for HHN 21
August 3rd, 2011- Halloween Horror Nights launches Twitter account
August 17th, 2011 - Dueling Dragons will no longer "Duel"
August 30th, 2011 - HHN 21 full event details released
September 15th, 2011 - Ghost Hunters to return to Universal for HHN 21
September 23rd, 2011 - HHN 21 Media Night Review
November 1st, 2011 - Holiday offerings for the Universal Orlando Resort announced!
November 2nd, 2011 - JAWS to close forever on January 2nd, 2012
December 6th, 2011 - Wizarding World of Harry Potter expansion confirmed!

January 1st, 2012 - Mummy & E.T. evacuated after technical malfunctions
January 2nd, 2012 - Jaws comprehensive coverage plus two on-ride videos!
January 3rd, 2012 - Huge photo & video report of Jaws closing day!
January 12th, 2012 - 2012 Mardi Gras Concert lineup, plus Jaws farewell
January 25th, 2012 - Huge announcement details revealed for 2012 additions!
February 4th, 2012 - Jaws behind walls plus a resort-wide photo update!
February 16th, 2012 - Spending continues to rise at Universal Orlando
February 16th, 2012 - Blue Man Group Re-Opening VIP Media Event Coverage
February 22nd, 2012 - Time lapse of Blue Man Group Theatre revamp posted!
February 26th, 2012 - New info on Hollywood Drive In Mini Golf revealed
March 1st, 2012 - Spiderman set to reopen on March 8th!
March 2nd, 2012 - Hollywood Drive In Golf opening photos
March 3rd, 2012 - More Spiderman reopening details released!
March 13th, 2012 - Hollywood Drive-In Golf officially open!
March 19th, 2012 - Amity Deconstruction Progress photos
April 3rd, 2012 - Cinematic Spectacular & Parade to debut on May 8th
April 9th, 2012 - Jaws corridor update, Despicable Me & streetmosphere
April 19th, 2012 - Sneak preview of the Universal Cinematic Spectacular
April 22nd, 2012 - Universal employees will begin testing Electronic Express Pass system at IOA on May 2nd/3rd.
April 23rd, 2012 - Pics of Jaws from the day AFTER closing!
May 2nd, 2012 - Two new entertainment dining packages announced
May 2nd, 2012 - Photos of Universal Express Q-Bots in Islands of Adventure
May 10th, 2012 - Universal's Cinematic Spectacular & Universal's Superstar Parade VIP Premiere Party photos & videos posted!
May 30th, 2012 - Ticket prices increase to become the most expensive in Orlando
May 30th, 2012 - Passholder previews for Despicable Me Minion Mayhem coming soon
May 30th, 2012 - Rock the Universe 2012 tickets now on sale
June 11th, 2012 - Despicable Me: Minion Mayhem in soft opening phase
June 12th, 2012 - Wet 'n Wild Orlando opens Blastaway Beach
June 14th, 2012 - Despicable Me Minion Mayhem to open on July 2nd!
July 2nd, 2012 - Despicable Me Minion Mayhem Grand Opening Coverage!
July 9th, 2012 - Cabana Bay Beach Resort Announced!
July 15th, 2012 - Shaquille O'Neal visits Despicable Me Minion Mayhem!
September 9th, 2012 - Huge resort-wide construction photo update
October 17th, 2012 - Update of future plans, including the fast tracking of Transformers
November 1st, 2012 - Transformers: The Ride officially announced for Universal Studios Florida!
November 14th, 2012 - New dining experience offerings announced!
November 25th, 2012 - Universal Orlando Holiday Pass now for sale!
December 4th, 2012 - Macy's Holiday Parade & Grinchmas Media Event report
December 11th, 2012 - New Harry Potter content being filmed for Universal

January 2nd, 2013 - Is Universal talking to the Tolkien family?
January 8th, 2013 - Mardi Gras 2013 Concert Lineup revealed!
January 25th, 2013 - Universal hosting 'Days of our Lives' fan fest
February 10th, 2013 - Universal Studios Mardi Gras Media Night Coverage!
February 13th, 2013 - Comcast buying remainder of NBCUniversal ownership
February 20th, 2013 - Big Update from both parks.
March 4th, 2013 - Transformers Gift Shop Opens!
April 1st, 2013 - Megatron begins making appearances at Transformers
May 8th, 2013 - Wizarding World of Harry Potter Diagon Alley details announced!
May 23rd, 2013 - The Simpsons' Springfield is coming to Universal!
June 17th, 2013 - 'Universal Dining Plan' announced for resort guests
June 17th, 2013 - Despicable Me Kids Suites coming to Portofino Bay
June 20th, 2013 - Universal Orlando Media Event & Transformers Opening
June 26th, 2013 - Cabin in the Woods announced for Halloween Horror Nights 23
June 27th, 2013 - Universal buys Wet n' Wild land & extra parcels!
July 1st, 2013 - In-depth look at the food & beverages of Springfield
July 1st, 2013 - Latest Halloween Horror Nights viral video posted!
July 16th, 2013 - Evil Dead house for Halloween Horror Nights 23!
July 17th, 2013 - Rocky Horror Picture Tribute Show return confirmed!
August 2nd, 2013 - Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit closed after guest injury
August 7th, 2013 - Harry Potter Celebration set for January 2014
September 11th, 2013 - Halloween Horror Nights Media Preview posted!
October 17th, 2013 - Robin Thicke & The Wanted set for Mardi Gras 2014
October 30th, 2013 - Attendance up, Greenroof Bridge coming, TNA returns
November 28th, 2013 - Bill & Ted rights renewed for HHN for five years!

January 2nd, 2014 - Harry Potter Diagon Alley Officially Announced!
January 31st, 2014 - Mardi Gras 2014 Concert Lineup Revealed!
February 5th, 2014 - Report from the new Antojitos Restaurant
February 14th, 2014 - Aqua Drag Racer mat slide coming to Wet 'n Wild
February 21st, 2014 - IOA Starbucks opens & resort construction photos!
February 23rd, 2014 - Mardi Gras Grand Celebration Media Night Report!
April 1st, 2014 - Universal plans to add more hotels to the Resort
May 13th, 2014 - Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts details announced!
May 13th, 2014 - Diagon Alley entertainment & interactive experiences announced!
June 9th, 2014 - The Walking Dead returns with huge maze at HHN 24
June 17th, 2014 - Cabana Bay Beach Resort trip report
June 17th, 2014 - New CityWalk Venue Media Preview report posted!
June 18th, 2014 - Universal Orlando VIP Tour Report Posted!
June 19th, 2014 - Wizarding World of Diagon Alley Media Report posted!
June 19th, 2014 - Wizarding World of Diagon Alley Daytime Media Report posted!
July 22nd, 2014 - Halloween Horror Nights 24 house & mazes announced!
August 5th, 2014 - Alien vs. Predator house announced for HHN 24!
August 11th, 2014 - Diagon Alley photo report - One month after opening!
August 14th, 2014 - 2nd Annual Harry Potter Celebration announced!
August 14th, 2014 - Loew's Royal Pacific Resort convention space expansion announced!
September 9th, 2014 - Halloween Horror Nights 24 Media Preview posted!
September 9th, 2014 - Universal announces Loews Sapphire Falls Resort!
October 3rd, 2014 - TPR's HUGE Halloween Horror Nights 24 Trip Report!
October 31st, 2014 - First Halloween Horror Nights 25 Teaser posted!
November 2nd, 2014 - The Cowfish Orlando Soft Opening Review Posted!

February 17th, 2015 - Permits filed for new Water Park near Cabana Bay
February 22nd, 2015 - Mardi Gras Media Day preview
May 7th, 2015 - Universal & Nintendo sign a deal for attractions!
May 25th, 2015 - Halloween Horror Nights 25 dates, icon & more announced!
May 25th, 2015 - Volcano Bay Water Park announced for 2017 opening!
June 11th, 2015 - Freddy vs. Jason house for Halloween Horror Nights!
June 17th, 2015 - Wet 'n Wild officially closing December 31st, 2016
July 30th, 2015 - Walking Dead returning to Halloween Horror Nights
August 17th, 2015 - Purge maze for Halloween Horror Nights
August 25th, 2015 - Fast and Furious ride announced for USO
November 1st, 2015 - The final show of Twister video
December 23rd, 2015 - Universal closes deal to purchase 450 acres of land

August 3rd, 2016 - Summer Media Event w/ KONG, HULK and Sapphire Falls
August 4th, 2016 - Krampus coming to Halloween Horror Nights in 2016!
August 10th, 2016 - HHN Original Houses, Scarezones & Shows announced!
August 25th, 2016 - Toothsome Chocolate Emporium review posted!
September 17th, 2016 - Halloween Horror Nights 26 Media Night report posted!
October 25th, 2016 - Halloween Horror Nights extended for 2 extra nights
November 1st, 2016 - Race Through New York starring Jimmy Fallon details posted!
November 7th, 2016 - Aventura Hotel, 6th onsite hotel announced for 2018
November 29th, 2016 - Nintendo-themed area confirmed for the Universal Orlando Resort!

March 7th, 2017 - Jimmy Fallon Ride Sneak Preview!
March 29th, 2017 - American Horror Story house announced for HHN27!
March 30th, 2017 - Volcano Bay ticket & annual pass options announced!
April 6th, 2017 - Race Through New York Grand Opening Event!
August 14th, 2017 - SAW: The Games of Jigsaw HHN house revealed!
August 15th, 2017 - Bill & Ted's Excellent Halloween Adventure ending with 2017 run
August 15th, 2017 - Academy of Villains & HHN scare zones announced!
August 15th, 2017 - Halloween Horror Nights 27 Media Event TR!
August 15th, 2017 - "A Celebration of Harry Potter" returns 1/26 - 1/28
November 6th, 2017 - Two new hotels announced for Universal Orlando!
November 19th, 2017 - Holidays at Universal Media Event Photo Report!

January 11th, 2018 - Announcements & additions teased for 2018!
January 11th, 2018 - "The Nighttime Lights at Hogwarts Castle" announced!
January 18th, 2018 - Voodoo Doughnut coming to CityWalk in Spring 2018!
January 29th, 2018 - "A Celebration of Harry Potter" event photo report!
March 29th, 2018 - Bar 17 Bistro at Universal's Aventura Resort announced!!
March 29th, 2018 - Halloween Horror Nights Dates & Tickets now online!
April 3rd, 2018 - Stranger Things coming to Halloween Horror Nights!
April 16th, 2018 - Fast Furious Supercharged soft opening photos
April 27th, 2018 - Dead Exposure: Patient Zero HHN maze announced!
April 27th, 2018 - Fast & Furious Supercharged - Opening Media Event
May 16th, 2018 - Trick ‘r Treat coming to Halloween Horror Nights!
June 14th, 2018 - Universal Orlando’s Cinematic Celebration announced
July 2nd, 2018 - Slaughter Sinema, Chucky & Killer Klowns announced!
July 17th, 2018 - Universal's Cinematic Celebration Nighttime Show!
August 8th, 2018 - Seeds of Extinction Horror Nights house announced!
August 10th, 2018 - Poltergeist coming to Halloween Horror Nights!
August 15th, 2018 - Universal's Aventura Hotel Media Event report
August 15th, 2018 - Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers at HHN!
August 15th, 2018 - Mardi Gras event dates announced!
August 20th, 2018 - The Horrors of Blumhouse coming to HHN!
August 21st, 2018 - ScaryTales: Deadly Ever After house announced for Halloween Horror Nights, two HHN nights added due to popular demand
August 22nd, 2018 - AMC Universal becoming Universal Cinemark with new enhancements
September 15th, 2018 - Halloween Horror Nights 28 Media Event TR!
November 1st, 2018 - HHN Stranger Things house to reopen on Nov. 6th!
November 15th, 2018 - Holidays at Universal Orlando media preview report!

January 15th, 2019 - Mardi Gras 2019 concert lineup & event details released!
February 21st, 2019 - Harry Potter coaster name & opening date revealed!
February 26th, 2019 - The TODAY Cafe coming to Universal Studios Florida!
March 4th, 2019 - Dark Arts at Hogwarts Castle projection show announced!
March 12th, 2019 - New Hagrid's Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure details
April 15th, 2019 - "Nightingales - Blood Pit" HHN 2019 house announced
April 22nd, 2019 - 'Hagrid's Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure' creatures revealed!
April 29th, 2019 - "Universal Monsters" house announced for HHN 2019!
May 6th, 2019 - Hagrid animated figure unveiled!
June 12th, 2019 - Hagrid's Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure TPR Review posted
July 26th, 2019 - Killer Klowns from Outer Space HHN maze announced!
July 30th, 2019 - Universal teases "Epic" announcement for August 1st
August 1st, 2019 - "Universal's Epic Universe" theme park announced; fourth gate to open at new South Campus of the Universal Orlando Resort
August 8th, 2019 - 'Us' and Graveyard Games HHN houses announced!
August 12th, 2019 - Halloween Horror Nights 2019 scare zones revealed!
August 14th, 2019 - Rob Zombie's House of 1000 Corpses house announced!
August 15th, 2019 - "Halloween Marathon of Mayhem" HHN show announced!
October 15th, 2019 - The Bourne Stuntacular coming Spring 2020!

January 31st, 2020 - Mardi Gras 2020 event details released!

Original Post:

Nickelodeon Leaving USF

ORLANDO -- The slime has stopped at Universal Orlando.

Cable network Nickelodeon has plans to abandon a television production operation at the theme park resort at the end of June.

At the same time, the theme park resort has shuttered the Nickelodeon Game Lab, an attraction based on a former Nickelodeon game show that ended with a contestant on the receiving end of a bucket of green goo.

Less than 10 people will be laid off from the Nickelodeon production unit, which has been at Universal Studios since the Florida theme park opened in 1990.

Nickelodeon culled an audience for its shows from the millions of tourists who visit Universal's two theme parks each year, but Nickelodeon has had a diminishing presence at the resort in recent years.

Also, its due to conflict of interest, Nick is owned by CBS and Universal is now owned by NBC. Along with that, Nick had little interest in the Orlando unit these days since no shows are taped there.
Last edited by SharkTums on Fri May 22, 2020 11:52 am.
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Postby Movieguy » Wed May 25, 2005 9:17 am

Man, I remember the old days of Nickelodeon, back when they used to film those game shows there all the time. Nick Arcade, Legends of The Hidden Temple, and GUTS were a few of my favorites.

So it doesn't surprise me that this place has closed other than the ownership issue. Today Nick is all about the Nicktoons, which is really a shame in some ways.

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Postby YoshiFan » Wed May 25, 2005 11:14 am

I definetly understand why they did this. Last time I was there was 12/03 and during past trips there the tour took you upstairs where you could see the sets of shows. We were told the studio isn't even used for shows anymore (save for Slimetime Live or Spalt) so the tour doesn't go upstairs. All it went to was that Gamelab.

I remember when the studio opened and they always used to make a big deal about how certain shows were filmed there like All That or What Would You Do?

It's still sad to see it go though and I hope they preserve the time capsule that was burried there.

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Postby PhishyBrewer » Wed May 25, 2005 11:28 am

Didn't they just open a NICK hotel near Universal like 2 months ago. Thought I saw something while watching Sponge Bob Square Pants :P

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Postby YoshiFan » Wed May 25, 2005 11:31 am

The hotel opens up Memorial Day. They are going to have a game show there that is a little like the GameLab show that was in Nick Studios.

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Postby Token Yankee Guy » Wed May 25, 2005 1:36 pm

oh man, I remember touring the nickelodean studios back in 96. I saw the Keene and Kel set and I even got to try some slime.

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Postby Hattuchili » Wed May 25, 2005 2:15 pm

That sounds to bad. I remember the "Family Double Dare" show and the Barney set, down in the studios, in 1996. I really liked it.

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Postby RCTfan » Wed May 25, 2005 9:52 pm

There is a Nickelodeon hotel on 536 (a rode that leads to Disney). Its near a place called the World Gateway. Its very strange, its right next to Disney. There are pictures of Nick characters along the buildings and a big Nickelodeon sign at the Lobby. Very odd placed.

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Postby JT3000 » Thu May 26, 2005 9:33 pm

USF seems to be losing it's original attractions at a rapid pace, but this really was just a waste of space in the last few years. It was completely abandoned. Which is sad, since the golden years of the network were taped there. I still remember seeing the graphic of the studio at the end of practically every show. I know I'm not the intended audience anymore, but I think their current programming sucks quiet frankly, from what I've seen while channel surfing.

Hopefully this is turned into an attraction. There's actually room for several in there. Hell, they could even have a Nick theme, since it's just the studio that's leaving.

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Postby M_Force_4_ever » Fri May 27, 2005 12:06 pm

I remember going to the Nick studios back in '95 and I saw a set forsome show which I can't remember the name of now. yeah I hope they open some Nick themed attractions.


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