With great fanfare (and an announcement video!), Universal Studios Hollywood announced a new logo aimed at cementing the destination’s epic five-year transformation, which saw the redevelopment of over 75% of the theme park.
Focusing on CityWalk’s recent and ongoing redevelopment projects, Universal touted the addition of LudoBird and Blaze Pizza and the forthcoming opening of Dongpo Kitcken, Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville and Voodoo Doughnut as part of CityWalk Hollywood’s grand transformation. In addition, Universal also released additional information regarding their plans to refurbish the Universal Cinemas – adding deluxe recliner seats, a new second level bar and lounge, new Christie laser projectors and the installation of a Dolby Atmos-approved sound system.
While none of the news thus far should come as a surprise to readers of Inside Universal, Universal Studios Hollywood also introduced a new logo to reflect the park’s ongoing redvelopment. Designed to match the new Universal Studios logo that was introduced during the studio’s centennial anniversary, Hollywood’s rebranding strategy will continue to use the “Entertainment Capital of LA” tag that was introduced several years ago.
We’ve included Universal’s official press releases below. Please stay tuned to Inside Universal for more on this and other stories originating from Universal Studios Hollywood.
Universal Studios Hollywood Debuts Streamlined New Logo as The Entertainment Capital of L.A. Rolls Out the Red Carpet In Celebration of its Newly Transformed World-Class Destination
Universal City, California, June 21, 2016 – As the #1 tourist destination in Los Angeles and one of the most progressive theme parks anywhere, Universal Studios Hollywood celebrates its ambitious epic revitalization with the introduction of a streamlined new logo, epitomizing the arrival of a newly transformed world-class entertainment destination.
Five years ago, Universal Studios Hollywood initiated an unprecedented undertaking to reimagine its theme park with highly detailed immersive rides and attractions, and embarked on building an infrastructure designed to support this monumental transformation—the most significant in the park’s storied history.
Representing the theme park’s single largest investment ever made, this sweeping makeover has had an astounding effect on the destination in which 75 percent of The Entertainment Capital of L.A. has been completely reimagined.
And while the arrival of the theme park’s much-anticipated, highly acclaimed opening of “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™” marked the culmination of this elaborate period of development, the progression of Universal Studios Hollywood continues with major investments in sophisticated new rides and attractions.
“This is a very exciting time for Universal Studios Hollywood, and as an economic leader we are excited about the impact our revitalized theme park will continue to have on L.A.’s thriving tourism,” said Larry Kurzweil, President of Universal Studios Hollywood. “The dramatic changes that have taken place over the past five years have substantially altered the look, feel and experience of our park to redefine us as an entirely new destination and we look forward to welcoming visitors from around the globe to a new Universal Studios Hollywood.”
“As an iconic symbol of our theme park, the introduction of a refined logo further represents our approach to our ever-evolving destination,” continued Mr. Kurzweil.
With support from parent company, Comcast, Universal Studios Hollywood successfully transformed the decades’ old park into a new theme park, launching a slate of next generation rides and expansive lands designed to further immerse guests into the worlds of favorite movies and television shows.
“Transformers: The Ride—3D” arrived in 2012, “Despicable Me Minion Mayhem” and Super Silly Fun Land opened in 2014, “Springfield,” located adjacent to the popular “The Simpsons Ride” and “Fast & Furious—Supercharged” roared to life in 2015, culminating with the much-anticipated arrival of “The Wizarding World of Harry Potter” in 2016.
Universal Studios Hollywood is always at the forefront of what’s considered topical and will unlock its “Don’t Open, Dead Inside” doors on July 4, 2016 for its all-new permanent attraction based on AMC’s “The Walking Dead,” the most watched show in cable television history.
“The Walking Dead” attraction will be a real-life interpretation of AMC’s award-winning television series. To elevate its authenticity, Universal Studios Hollywood is partnering with “The Walking Dead’s” creative team, including visionary executive producer and director, Greg Nicotero and his special effects company, KNB Efx. Nicotero’s team, responsible for masterfully creating the show’s realistic decaying walkers, will construct prosthetics, utilize original molds and painstakingly apply paint and detailing to the attraction walkers.
Under the scope of its recent transformation, Universal Studios Hollywood also added visually cohesive architectural theming throughout the theme park that paired the lavish designs of old Hollywood Art Deco glamor with modern sensibilities. From the 2013 installation of the 37,000 square foot Universal Plaza outdoor piazza to the stylish entry portal for the world-renowned, behind-the-scenes Studio Tour, and everywhere along the way to create, Art Deco flourishes for a consistent aesthetics appeal.
The theme park’s signature Studio Tour also played a significant role in the step-by-step reinvention of Universal Studios Hollywood. The signature attraction that has offered millions of guests unprecedented behind-the-scenes access to the world’s most alluring business—Hollywood movie-making—rolled out a fleet of a new, contemporary trams further providing guests with the best seat in the house as they peek behind the velvet curtain.
In tandem with the Studio Tour’s enhancement, Universal put the pedal to the metal with the 2015 debut of “Fast & Furious—Supercharged,” which raced onto the scene in the groundbreaking new 3D-HD thrill ride featuring the film series original cast members.
Since its inception over 50 years ago, Universal Studios has lifted the veil on Hollywood’s most illustrious industry, placing guests at the heart of favorite movies and television shows. It continues to be at the top of its game, taking innovation, imagination and inspiration to meteoric levels working in collaboration with some of the most influential filmmakers in the business and the greatest minds in entertainment—Steven Spielberg, Matt Groening, James L. Brooks, Peter Jackson, Michael Bay, Chris Meledandri, Greg Nicotero and JK Rowling—to create intriguing rides and attractions.
Ingenuity transcends to the destination’s adjacent lifestyle center, Universal CityWalk, which in its 20th year is undergoing a similar revitalization on the heels of the theme park’s update.
Universal CityWalk, Southern California’s Premier Open-Air Entertainment Destination that Defined Today’s Vibrant Lifestyle Epicenter, Sets the Stage for a Bold Revitalization with a Slate of Elaborate Enhancements and State-of-the-Art Updates
Universal City, California, June 21, 2016 – Universal CityWalk, Los Angeles’ landmark urban entertainment complex that ushered in a generation of similar open air destinations, undergoes an elaborate revitalization as the pop cultural mecca embraces change to remain contemporary and fresh.
For over 20 years, CityWalk has boosted the city’s rhythm through a foundation built on providing memorable entertainment experiences. With a series of dramatic enhancements currently underway that includes the introduction of new restaurants, shopping experiences, visually aesthetic design features and a state-of-the-art movie theatre renovation, the spotlight shines brightly on CityWalk as it continues to resonate as one of L.A.’s most influential lifestyle centers.
This significant undertaking coincides with Universal Studios Hollywood’s recent epic transformation in which 75 percent of the world-class theme park was completely reimagined.
“This is an exciting time as Universal CityWalk undergoes a transformation of its own,” said Larry Kurzweil, President of Universal Studios Hollywood. “For over two decades, CityWalk has been the go to place for locals and out-of-town visitors alike to enjoy a variety of entertainment, and we’re excited to bring these significant enhancements to our guests as we continue to invest in our world-class destination.”
Introduced in 1993, CityWalk was the prototypical one-stop leisure destination that redefined the mall of yesteryear as a vibrant multi-sensory outdoor complex. With grand neon signs and larger-than-life decorative sculptures complimenting the diverse offerings, this whimsical street was reflective of L.A.’s eclectic landscape and distinguishing characteristics. Hailed as a revolutionary achievement at its inception, CityWalk was constructed in collaboration with visionary architect Jon Jerde to mastermind the quintessential urban California street, set amid a theme park and a movie studio, and sandwiched between palm trees and asphalt.
For film buffs, CityWalk has long been the epicenter for fans seeking an environment that matches the excitement of their favorite blockbusters. CityWalk’s revitalization will elevate the Universal Cinemas to new heights as the 18 screen and IMAX 3D theatre updates with the most technologically advanced sight and sound achievements. A complete refurbishment of the split level structure will include the installation of deluxe recliner seats to all 18 theatres—the equivalent of those found in Hollywood screening rooms—making every seat, the best seat in the house.
An all-new dedicated and stylish second level bar-lounge, flanked by the upper level theatres, will add a new dimension to the space as it blends high-tech elegance with chic sophistication for casual pre- and post- movie-going fun.
Each redesigned theatre will be fully upgraded with Christie RGB Laser projection Dolby Atmos immersive surround sound and equipped with Christie Vive speakers for optimal audio performance. The installation of new, state-of-the art screens, perforated to enable 360 degree audio will complement the overall enhancements.
The iconic, dancing water fountain situated at the heart of CityWalk recently got a splashing make-over from the designers behind the creation of the Las Vegas Bellagio hotel’s spectacular water art. This new, modern and impressive display incorporates over 230 individual power jets projecting streams of water choreographed into the air, complimented by programmable colorful LED lights for round-the-clock entertainment.
Universal CityWalk also adds four-star dining and shopping to its roster of best-in-class offerings. A sampling of the newly-introduced and soon-to-open palate pleasers include, LudoBird™ restaurant featuring world-renowned and award-winning Chef Ludo Lefebvre famous fried chicken, and Blaze Fast Fire’d Pizza, the fast-casual and artisanal pizza place. Meizhou Dongpo, a highly regarded modern restaurant in China will open Dongpo Kitchen this summer serving up authentic Sichuan and traditional Chinese fare in its first U.S. casual dining concept.
Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville will bring the musician and entrepreneur’s celebrated Caribbean-themed restaurant, club and music enclave to Universal CityWalk, in its first-ever Los Angeles-based locale. Voodoo Doughnut will take a bite out of CityWalk when the sweet, savory and generally out-of-this-world Portland, Oregon-originated donut masters open its first-ever California location. Both venues, slated to open this fall, will join existing eateries including Wolfgang Puck Bistro, Karl Strauss Brewing Company, Hard Rock Café Hollywood, Pink’s Hot Dog, Smashburger and Buca di Beppo, to name a few.
CityWalk shopping gets a running start with the grand opening of Shoe Palace, as the shop, renowned for selling top tier recreational shoes and apparel, joins a sampling of such retailers as Abercrombie & Fitch, Fossil, Skechers, Francesca’s Collections, Guess Accessories, Hot Topic, Dodger’s Clubhouse, The Raider Image, and Lush Cosmetics.
As a premier entertainment hub, CityWalk’s popular “5 Towers” concert stage has helped to further establish the destination with its intimate, outdoor music venue, delivering spirited concert performances from some of today’s most influential artists, including Justin Bieber, CeeLo Green, Carly Rae Jepson, Ludacris, Tyrese Gibson, Wiz Khalifia, 2 Chainz and Good Charlotte.
From A-list stars to A-list hopefuls, CityWalk has also been at the forefront of helping budding artists find their voice through its successful Street Performers program, a platform for emerging artists to showcase their talents to a wide range of visitors from across the globe. In typical Southern California fashion, where aspiring artists migrate from all parts of the country to find fame and fortune, CityWalk’s prolific Street Performers program has sustained since the beginning, evolving over time as a leading public stage for up-and-coming musicians to hone their craft before a live CityWalk audience, be it tourists, locals or talent agents.