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Blockbuster 3-D-CGI Feature “Despicable Me” to Become Attraction Experience at Universal Orlando

Despicable Me. © 2010 Universal Orlando Resort. All Rights Reserved

Plus, Incredible High-Tech Enhancements Underway for One of the World’s Most Popular Attractions: The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man

Orlando, Fla. (May 19, 2011) – Universal Orlando Resort today announced that its newest attraction will be based on Universal Pictures and Illumination Entertainment’s blockbuster 3-D-CGI feature “Despicable Me,” bringing minions, mayhem and a whole new level of 3-D family fun to its guests. The “Despicable Me” experience will replace the Jimmy Neutron attraction at Universal Studios Florida.

Universal also announced that The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man, one of the greatest attractions in theme park history, will be completely reanimated in 4K digital high definition – once again redefining the theme park experience.

Both will open in 2012 and are being developed by the same award-winning Universal Creative team that has brought all of Universal Orlando’s spectacularly themed attractions to life. Both will utilize brand-new, highly sophisticated Infitec 3-D projection systems designed to make the experience sharper, clearer and more “real” than ever before.

DESPICABLE ME  
With a worldwide gross of more than $540 million, 2010’s “Despicable Me,” from directors Chris Renaud & Pierre Coffin, is the sixth most successful film that Universal Pictures has ever distributed. It is now the 10th-biggest animated film in U.S. history. The 3-D animated adventure thrilled audiences across the globe with its outrageous humor, endearing characters and compelling storyline – all of which guests will be able to experience exclusively at Universal Orlando in 2012.

“Despicable Me” will become the first-ever Universal animated film to be transformed into a theme park experience. The Universal Creative team is working closely with producer Chris Meledandri, the founder of Illumination Entertainment, to create all-new animation for an all-new “Despicable Me” adventure that places guests right in the center of the action.

Gru, one of the world’s greatest super-villains, is bringing his high-tech empire – and his three adopted daughters – to Universal Studios, and he is looking for all the help he can get. First, he will transform guests into an army of mischievous, scene-stealing minions. Then he will train them. And that kicks off an unforgettable ride experience that creates a hysterical mix of chaos and family fun.

Guests will:  

  • Laugh as they embark on an entirely-new, high-tech 3-D digital adventure with their favorite characters from the film – Gru, daughters Margo, Edith and Agnes, and of course, Gru’s not-so-bright pit crew, the minions
  • Marvel as they explore Gru’s lair and descend into his secret lab
  • Shriek as the entire family is transformed into minions
  • Celebrate as they are swept into a first-ever, minion-inspired, interactive dance party where they can show off their best moves


“The ‘Despicable Me’ attraction is the latest example of how we tap into pop culture’s most compelling stories and turn them into extraordinary theme park entertainment,” said Mark Woodbury, president of Universal Creative. “This is a perfect fit for Universal Orlando, and we can’t wait to bring this one-of-a-kind experience to life.”

“As we write, design and animate our films at Illumination, it is our singular goal to bring to life endearing and, hopefully, enduring characters,” said Chris Meledandri. “With the creation of next year’s ‘Despicable Me’ attraction at Universal Orlando, audiences will be able to immerse themselves in Gru’s world for many years to come.”

THE AMAZING ADVENTURES OF SPIDER-MAN
Already one of the most popular and innovative theme park attractions ever created, The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man at Universal’s Islands of Adventure continues to raise the bar for theme park entertainment – combining advanced motion-based ride vehicles, 3-D digital film and live special effects to create an unparalleled ride experience. It is widely acknowledged as one of the best theme park experiences in the world – and it’s about to get mind-blowingly better.


The newly reanimated, high-definition experience will unfold within the attraction’s towering visual spaces – taking on even larger than larger-than-life proportions. The new digital animation – combined with the new Infitec system and new set enhancements – will transform what is already one of the most technologically advanced attractions ever created into what will feel like an all-new experience.

Facts about the enhanced ride experience:

  • All-new digital animation done in 4K high definition – the highest HD resolution available
  • The new HD animation will allow guests to experience details they’ve never been able to before – from the flames spewing from Hobgoblin’s pumpkins to the electricity arching through Electro’s body to the stitching on Spider-Man’s gloves.
  • To take advantage of new HD clarity and detail, Universal Orlando is adding entirely new details to the film – and leaving it up to guests to find them.


“Guests will not believe their eyes when they experience the new Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man,” said Thierry Coup, senior vice president of the Universal Creative Studio. “We are talking about a larger-than-life environment and the HD animation will make it even more remarkable than it has been. It will seem brand-new.”

For more information about Universal Orlando Resort, visit www.universalorlando.com.

Universal Orlando Resort
Universal Orlando Resort is a completely separate destination featuring two theme parks, three magnificently themed on-site hotels and a nighttime entertainment complex. Guests can soar above Hogwarts with Harry Potter, swing above the streets with Spider-Man, battle aliens alongside Agent J, and help Shrek save Princess Fiona in Shrek 4-D.

Judith Rubin
Judith Rubin ([email protected]) is a leading journalist, publicist, strategist, blogger, content marketing specialist and connector in the international attractions industry. She excels at writing about all aspects of design and technical design, production and project management. Areas of special interest include AV integration and show control, lighting design and acoustics, specialty cinema, digital video and world’s fairs. Judith has ties to numerous industry organizations. From 2005-2020 she ran communications, publications and social media for the Themed Entertainment Association (TEA). In 2013, she was honored with the TEA Service Award. She was development director of IMERSA, and co-chair of the 2014 IMERSA Summit. She was publicist for the Large Format Cinema Association in the 1990s, now part of the Giant Screen Cinema Association (GSCA) and has also contributed to the publications of PLASA, IAAPA and the International Planetarium Society. Already making her mark as a magazine and book editor, Judith joined World’s Fair magazine in 1987, which introduced her to the attractions industry. Launching as a freelancer in the mid 1990s she has contributed to dozens of publications and media outlets including Funworld, Lighting&Sound America, Sound & Communications, Urban Land, The Raconteur and The Planetarian. She joined InPark in 2010. Judith earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Pratt Institute. She has lived in New York City and the San Francisco Bay Area, and now makes her home in Saint Louis, where she is active in the local arts and theater community.

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