Universal Studios Hollywood unlocked the iconic “Don’t’ Open, Dead Inside” doors to usher in its all-new “The Walking Dead” permanent daytime attraction, based on AMC’s top-rated television series and the most watched show in cable television history, which officially opens to the public on Monday, July 4.
Joining in the celebration was Greg Nicotero (Executive Producer, Director of “The Walking Dead” and owner of KNB Efx), Kyla Kenedy (“Mika Samuels” on “The Walking Dead”), Ross Marquand (“Aaron” on “the Walking Dead”), Brighton Sharbino (“Lizzie Samuels” on “The Walking Dead”), Michael Traynor (“Nicholas” on “The Walking Dead”), Scott Wilson (“Hershel Green” on “The Walking Dead”), and Yvette Nicole Brown (actress and “The Walking Dead” uber fan).
A horde of 100 ravenous walkers were also on hand to help bring the event to life.
Universal Studios Hollywood has worked collaboratively with AMC’s “The Walking Dead” as a signature “Halloween Horror Nights” maze for years. This newly enhanced venture takes the highly sought-after experience from a seasonal, limited time offering to an exciting 365-day opportunity, raising the bar for themed walk-through attractions.
“‘The Walking Dead’ is a phenomenon that has successfully and consistently affected the psyche of viewers on a global basis since its debut,” said Larry Kurzweil, President of Universal Studios Hollywood. “We’re taking its authenticity to the next level by collaborating with the show’s award-winning production team to create a thrilling, living representation of the series that can only be experienced at Universal Studios Hollywood.”
To ensure authenticity of the attraction, Universal Studios Hollywood partnered with “The Walking Dead’s” creative team, including Greg Nicotero and KNB Efx to develop prosthetics, utilize original molds and painstakingly apply paint and detailing to attraction walkers. The integral involvement of the creative team not only inspires the emotional connection fans experience, it will be among the attraction’s key distinguishing characteristics that define it as a living representation of the show.
“After six years of working on ‘The Walking Dead,’ we have this great opportunity to take ‘The Walking Dead’ out of the studio, off the soundstage and into this amazing and truly one-of-a-kind attraction at Universal Studios Hollywood,” said Greg Nicotero. “Guests can now come face-to-face with live and animatronic Walkers that are indiscernible from the Walkers from the show. It’s very exciting, and I am thrilled to be a part of it.”
Coupled with authentic walker make-up effects, sophisticated animatronic walkers, substantially more detailed set design and costuming, and highly recognizable props replicated from the series, “The Walking Dead” attraction delivers an uncompromised realistic environment that brings guests even further into the most watched show in cable television history.
“The Walking Dead” attraction is located within an entirely new, custom-built structure, situated within an expansive building complex just inside the theme park’s main entry. Due to the intense nature of this experience, the attraction is not recommended for guests under the age of 13.
The past five years have been a remarkable time for Universal Studios Hollywood as the destination embarked on an unprecedented revitalization that has substantially altered over 75 percent of its familiar footprint to effectively characterize it as an entirely new theme park experience. The introduction of the all-new “The Walking Dead” attraction continues the theme park’s unparalleled investment in its ambitious epic transformation.
AMC’s “The Walking Dead” depicts the story of survivors in a post-apocalyptic world overrun by hordes of terrifying flesh-eating walkers. It is the #1 show on television among adults 18-49 for the last four years and will debut its seventh season this October.