New theme park additions will highlight Harry Potter, characters from Sanrio and, for the first time, DreamWorks characters.
Universal Studios Hollywood will introduce a slate of new theme park attractions, characters and Universal CityWalk establishments inspired by DreamWork’s Kung Fu Panda, Hello Kitty, Harry Potter, the Margaritaville brand and other entertainment properties.
Following its recent acquisition of DreamWorks Animation, Universal will roll out a never-before-seen DreamWorks Theatre. Opening in 2018, the new venue will host a variety of DreamWorks-themed attractions, beginning with a multi-sensory adventure inspired by Kung Fu Panda.
A raft of DreamWorks characters will also join the theme park beginning this summer. New characters include Kung Fu Panda’s Po and Tigress; Madagascar’s Alex the Lion, The Penguins and King Julian; Trolls’ Poppy and Brand; and Shrek’s Puss ‘n Boots.
Sanrio’s Hello Kitty will also appear for costume character appearances and meet-and-greets with guests. The popular characters, as well as other Sanrio characters including My Melody, Keroppi and Chococat, will also be featured on park-exclusive merchandise such as apparel, accessories, collectibles and confectionery.
Meanwhile, the holiday-themed program “Christmas in The Wizarding World of Harry Potter” will return to the theme park for the second year in a row. The annual event will see festive décor themed to each of the individual storefronts in Hogsmeade village as well as holiday-themed food and beverages. At nightfall, the Hogwarts castle will be illuminated with a light projection show accompanied by a musical arrangement from the Harry Potter films.
Finally, Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville has opened its first-ever Los Angeles-based location at Universal CityWalk. The new restaurant will feature live music and entertainment as well as an expansive menu complete with signature drinks and dishes–including the Who’s to Blame Margarita and a Cheeseburger in Paradise.