Harry Potter(TM) to Cast Spell on Universal Orlando Resort

Harry Potter 'Theme Park within a Theme Park' Scheduled to Debut in 2009 -

Fans to be Immersed in the Adventures of the World's Most Popular Wizard

May 31, 2007, 01:00 ET from Universal Orlando Resort

    ORLANDO, Fla., May 31 /PRNewswire/ -- Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.
 and Universal Orlando Resort are partnering to create the world's first
 fully immersive Harry Potter themed environment based on the bestselling
 books by J.K. Rowling and blockbuster feature films from Warner Bros.
 Envisioned as a "theme park within a theme park" and titled "The Wizarding
 World of Harry Potter," the new environment will become part of the
 experience within Universal's Islands of Adventure theme park at the
 Universal Orlando Resort.
     (Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20070531/CLTH038-a
              http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20070531/CLTH038-c )
     "Over the years we've received thousands of letters from fans around
 the world wishing they could visit Hogwarts and the wonderful locations
 described in each of J.K. Rowling's beloved stories," said Barry Meyer,
 chairman and CEO, Warner Bros. Entertainment. "Working with Universal
 Orlando Resort, we are confident that we'll be able to provide Harry Potter
 fans with an incredible experience that upholds the richness of J.K.
 Rowling's books and delivers on the authentic detail portrayed in our
     "We will rely on our company's rich movie heritage and expertise in
 transforming film concepts into theme park entertainment experiences," said
 Ron Meyer, president and COO, Universal Studios. "The Harry Potter stories
 are among the most compelling of our time. The millions of people who have
 read the books and seen the movies will now be able to experience the world
 of Harry Potter in person."
     Inspired by J.K. Rowling's compelling stories and characters -- and
 faithful to the visual landscapes of the films -- "The Wizarding World of
 Harry Potter" will provide a one-of-a-kind opportunity to experience the
 magical world of Harry and his friends. The fully immersive, themed land
 will enable guests to visit some of the most iconic locations found in the
 books and the films including the village of Hogsmeade, the mysterious
 Forbidden Forest, and even Hogwarts castle itself.
     "The plans I've seen look incredibly exciting, and I don't think fans
 of the books or films will be disappointed," said J.K. Rowling.
     "We have a profound sense of responsibility for the Harry Potter
 franchise at Warner Bros. Bringing the magic of J.K. Rowling's written word
 to the motion picture screen was the first step in expanding this amazing
 and imaginative world. Working with Universal Orlando Resort to bring it to
 life in a physical environment that you can walk through, relax in and ride
 on is the natural next step for fans to experience and enjoy," said Alan
 Horn, president and COO, Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.
     Expected to open in late 2009, the new environment will feature
 immersive rides and interactive attractions, as well as experiential shops
 and restaurants that will enable guests to sample fare from the wizarding
 world's best known establishments. Also debuting will be a state-of-the-art
 attraction that will bring the magic, characters and stories of Harry
 Potter to life in an exciting way that guests have never before
     "We are going to devote more time, more money, more expertise and more
 executive talent from throughout our entire organization and creative team
 - as well as from Warner Bros., our partners - to ensure that this entire
 environment is second-to-none," said Tom Williams, chairman and CEO,
 Universal Parks and Resorts.
     Brad Globe, president of Warner Bros. Worldwide Consumer Products,
 added: "In Universal, we found the right partner whose unparalleled
 commitment will ensure that this is a world class destination. Their track
 record of success and the consistently high level of entertainment at all
 of their parks gave us the confidence to know that they will meet-or
 exceed- the extremely high expectations we all have for this project."
     The Academy Award-winning production designer Stuart Craig, who has
 worked to bring the world of Harry Potter to life in all of the feature
 films to date, leads the creative design for the area to ensure it remains
 faithful to the look and feel of the films.
     "Our primary goal is to make sure this experience is an authentic
 extension of Harry Potter's world as it is portrayed in the books and
 films," said Craig. "I am very excited to be working closely with the
 Universal Orlando team to bring the area to life."
     The Universal Orlando resort destination (www.universalorlando.com)
 includes two dramatically distinct and adjacent theme parks, the Universal
 Studios motion picture and television theme park and Universal's Islands of
 Adventure, Orlando's most thrilling and exhilarating theme park. Universal
 Orlando also includes CityWalk, a 30-acre dining, shopping, club and live-
 entertainment venue as well as premier on-site Loews hotels and world-class
 film and television production facilities.
     Harry Potter continues to be a global phenomenon. The series of books
 by author J.K. Rowling has been translated into 65 languages with more than
 325 million copies sold in over 200 territories around the world. The
 films, produced by Warner Bros. Pictures, have grossed more than $3.5
 billion at the box office worldwide. Each of the four Harry Potter films
 produced to date has the distinction of making it into the all time top 20
 grossing films worldwide. The fifth film in the series, Harry Potter and
 the Order of the Phoenix(TM), will be released in theatres on July 11,
     HARRY POTTER characters, names and related indicia are trademarks of
 and (C) Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. Harry Potter Publishing Rights (C)
 JKR. (s07)

SOURCE Universal Orlando Resort