2012 is the “year to be here” at Universal Orlando Resort (updated with video)

2012 is the “year to be here” at Universal Orlando Resort (updated with video)

2012 is the “year to be here” at Universal Orlando Resort (updated with video)

2012 is the "year to be here" at Universal Orlando (courtesy of Universal's Facebook page).
Courtesy of UniversalOrlando.com.

Universal just wrapped up their big announcement event for their new 2012 entertainment. Here is the full recap:

Blue Man Group ~ Opening February 2012 at Universal CityWalk

Universal Orlando’s Blue Man Group show is taking their unique and captivating mash-up of high energy music, comedy, audience participation and collective exhilaration to another level. Featuring a new show environment, new music, new technology and new experiences, the show will allow audiences to join the Blue Men as they discover, engage and explore the world’s obsession with cutting-edge technology.  Signature Blue Man Group moments combine with breathtakingly fun new pieces for an explosive evening of entertainment.  New show elements include the curious Blue Men interacting with enormous “GiPads,” a funny and insightful look at contemporary communication vehicles, and a pulsating new finale with an original Blue Man Group music score that will have guests jumping to their feet. Look closely – you may even see the Blue Men take a spin on one of Universal Orlando’s most popular attractions.

 

The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man ~ Experience March 2012 at Islands of Adventure

Universal Orlando is transforming what is already one of the most amazing attraction experiences ever created into what will feel like an all-new adventure.  The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man will soon feature all-new, 4K digital high-definition animation, new high tech 3-D glasses and upgrades to the set, audio and lighting systems.  The re-animation of the ride film will include an entirely new level of detail for guests to discover, including a cameo by legendary comic book icon and Spider-Man co-creator, Stan Lee.

 

Universal’s Superstar Parade ~ Opening Spring 2012 at Universal Studios Florida

Some of today’s most beloved characters and stories will bring new adventure to the streets of Universal Studios during Universal’s Superstar Parade – an all-new daily parade that features larger-than-life floats, state-of-the-art technology and hundreds of energetic street performers.  Guests will sing and dance along with characters like the minions from Despicable Me, E.B. from the hit comedy, Hop, Nickelodeon’s Dora & Diego and SpongeBob SquarePants during the interactive experience. Guests will have the opportunity to enjoy performances and character meet and greets prior to the parade at select locations throughout the day.

 

Universal’s Cinematic Spectacular: 100 Years of Movie Memories ~ Opening Spring 2012 at Universal Studios Florida

Narrated by award-winning actor and recent Golden Globe – Cecil B. DeMille honoree, Morgan Freeman, Universal Orlando’s brand-new nighttime show, Universal’s Cinematic Spectacular, will celebrate the most powerful and emotional moments from Universal Pictures’ most iconic films – all on cutting-edge waterfall screens within the Universal Studios lagoon and surrounded by colorful fountains and pyrotechnics. The experience will take guests on a journey through epic cinematic moments filled with heroes, horror, laughter, good vs. evil and triumph. The new show opens this spring, runs all summer and then on select nights through the end of the year.

 

Despicable Me Minion Mayhem ~ Opening Summer 2012 at Universal Studios Florida  

Universal Orlando’s newest attraction, Despicable Me Minion Mayhem, will take guests on an unforgettable 3-D adventure with their favorite characters from the hit film – Gru, Margo, Edith, Agnes and the mischievous minions. The experience begins when guests enter Gru’s home, where they learn that they’re being recruited to become minions and undergo “minion training.”  Things don’t go as planned, and guests find themselves on a wildly hysterical journey with Gru and his daughters.  Once guests make it through training, they join an interactive, minion-inspired dance party where they can show off their best moves.

Universal’s Creative team is working closely with Chris Meledandri’s Illumination Entertainment to bring this all-new adventure to life in the most authentic way possible.  In fact, the beloved characters in the attraction will be voiced by the film’s original cast: Steve Carell (Gru), Miranda Cosgrove (Margo), Dana Gaier (Edith) and Elsie Fisher (Agnes).  The ride’s experience is being developed by the same creative team that brought you the award-winning film, Despicable Me. The motion-picture event Despicable Me 2 arrives in theaters on July 3, 2013.

 

Other New Experiences Opening this Year

  • Hollywood Drive-In Golf, a unique 36-hole miniature golf experience inspired by the classic drive-in movie era, will open in February at Universal CityWalk.
  • A great, new immersive retail entertainment experience that will become home to SpongeBob SquarePants and other characters from the number one kids animated TV series, Nickelodeon’s SpongeBob SquarePants.  It will open inside Universal Studios this year.
  • Minutes away from Universal Orlando, the popular Wet ‘n Wild water park will open its first interactive family water play area, this summer – allowing everyone in the family to splash and swim together.  Amidst lush, tropical landscaping, the new area will feature 15 water slides and more than 100 soakers, jets, waterfalls and water cannons – making it the largest interactive water play experience in Florida.

 

As always, I will be working diligently to update the OI Universal Center so it accurately reflects all the new information released today. Stay tuned to our update page to track the latest changes to the Center. (You can also see the five most recent updates on our homepage.)

Or, if you are plugged in on social sites, you can also track our updates on Google+, Facebook, and Twitter!

 

Update

Universal said that they are going to be uploading new videos pertaining to today’s announcement. As they do, I will add them to this post.

[youtube_video]BN0hGyJl3ho[/youtube_video]

[youtube_video]AjtrnQa0B04[/youtube_video]

[youtube_video]8xXS8JlzXZ4[/youtube_video]

[youtube_video]AcSWBtGymBI[/youtube_video]

Taylor Strickland Taylor Strickland is the Owner & Publisher at Orlando Informer, the internationally awarded independent resource for guests visiting Orlando. In this position, he leads the website's overall direction and day-to-day operations, working with a team of writers, editors, developers, and producers.

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dwhite56
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dwhite56

So, no Transformers huh?  I know Paramount was the studio that released the movies, but I thought they were connected to Universal in some way.  I know some of the scenes were shot on the Universal back lot, according to Wikipedia, but……oh well.  Maybe another time!  🙂

OrlandoInformer
Guest
OrlandoInformer

We still have no official confirmation whatsoever as to the attraction that will be replacing JAWS and the Amity area. You can still keep hoping! 🙂

pygmypuff
Guest
pygmypuff

When they say “February 2012”, do you think they mean opening at the beginning?  I’d love to play on their new mini golf course if it is open!  The last trip I took to UO, we had been trying to catch a soft opening of WWOHP, but UO’s idea of “spring” and our idea of “spring” were a couple of months off…

OrlandoInformer
Guest
OrlandoInformer

Yes, I remember the whole “opening in Spring 2010” stuff quite well. I was working in Universal’s vacation package department at the time, and I had to have many conversations with excited WWoHP fans about exactly when “spring” was 🙂 But anyway, regarding your question, I think Hollywood Drive-In Golf will open at the very end of February. To be honest, I’m surprised it is opening in February at all. It doesn’t seem like it’ll be ready in just a few weeks. They are definitely making progress, but it just seems like it’s a good two or three months from… Read more »

nschulman
Guest
nschulman

So is there any official word on when they are shutting down Spiderman for the upgrades?  If what your reader said and that it’s closing on February 8th, that is 2 days before I arrive to Universal with my girlfriend for our vacation!  UGH!  I really love that ride!

OrlandoInformer
Guest
OrlandoInformer

Yesterday they did not state any closing dates for Spider-Man — they just stated that the new version would open in March. I’m going to write to them and ask right now. I’ll be back to you.

OrlandoInformer
Guest
OrlandoInformer

I heard back from Universal Guest Services today. They said that there were no definite dates for Spider-Man to be closed in preparation for the March re-opening. That seems a little hard to believe, but anyway, that’s what I was told. We’ll just have to keep watching it.

Missy
Guest
Missy

Any idea if Ellen is coming to Universal this year?

OrlandoInformer
Guest
OrlandoInformer

There has been no official confirmation, but most likely yes. Should be the last Sunday in March or the first Sunday in April.

lauren890
Guest
lauren890

I’m going to universal for the second time in mid-late June. I went for the first time last year and loved it so can’t wait to go back with all these updates! Big fingers crossed the Despicable Me ride will be open in time for my trip!!

kateeyo
Guest
kateeyo

The Despicable Me ride is going to be 10x what Jimmy Neutron ever was. I love my little minions.