Harry Potter to make theme park debut

Warner Bros. Entertainment 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.

“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 films.”


“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



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 experienced.


“We are going to devote more time, more money, more expertise and more executive
talent from throughout our entire organisation 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


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.”