Since summer this year, a Walking Dead attraction will become permanent at Universal Studios Hollywood theme park, located in Southern California, according to AMC’s Talking Dead.
It will feature authentic walker makeup effects, animatronic walkers, detailed set designs and props replicated from the successful series.
Gregory Nicotero, occasional director of the series and makeup artist, is the executive producer of the attraction. He, alongside his special-effects makeup team KNB EFX will design the appearance of the walkers. Universal Studios said that the thematic attraction is not intended for children under 13.
He said to U.S.A. Today that fans will be able to interact with characters from the six seasons of The Walking Dead (TWD). However, the attraction will make emphasis on zombie walkers, with live performances and animatronics, instead of focusing on the living characters of the show.
The objective of Universal is to recreate moments from the television show in a very immersive way. Nicotero remarked that fans will get great opportunities to see things from different TWD seasons, specifically from seasons 1, 3 and 4, adding that “It’s a little bit of a walk down memory lane”.
Currently, franchises such as Harry Potter, The Simpsons and The Fast and The Furious generate millions of dollars in revenues around the world. Nicotero said that it would be great if Universal can consistently offer a 365 days experience of The Walking Dead.
“The Walking Dead is a phenomenon that has successfully and consistently affected the psyche of viewers on a global basis, since its debut,” Universal Studios Hollywood president Larry Kurzweil said in a statement.
Theme parks: a worldwide industry that generates great revenues
Mr. Larry Kurzweil added that Universal wants to make an authentic representation of the series, that will only be experienced at Universal Studios Hollywood. It is calculated that just in 2014, approximately 40 million people visited Universal Studios Theme Parks.
Universal Theme Parks are a subsidiary of NBCUniversal, the third-largest operator of theme parks in the world. According to statistics, all Universal parks generate an estimated $13 billion in revenues per year. On the other hand, Universal Studios Hollywood, the park that will host the Walking Dead’s new attraction, generates more than $2 billion revenues each year.
According to a Wall Street report published in 2011, the Zombie industry is valued at $5.75 billion, including movie tickets, TV shows, video games, merchandise, zombie walks, comic books and park attractions. However, it could be expected that the same industry grew even more in the last years with the success of franchises such as The Walking Dead.
Source: USA Today