Great article and valid points! I was very exited upon hearing about Epic Universe, but after my recent trip to Universal, I couldn’t agreed more—the studios park just feels empty outside of Harry Potter.

Just came across this article. Interesting it didn’t mention COVID in the analysis given the April date. Having just returned from the resort parks in August I have to say I cannot agree more with the overall point of the article. Uni has a formula that already works with the two parks, hotel proximity, transportation and the IPs. Aside from what the kids kind of like, if it weren’t for Transformers, ET and Diagon Alley, I’m not sure I’d care much for Studios. With the exception of Mardi Gras concerts and Horror Nights, there is so much potential to get more cash out of the existing space. Bourne may be a good show, but I’m not moved to see it like the new Jurassic coaster that’s being built. Islands has a more immersive and adventurous feel to it so much so that after not visiting for a while and returning, after Toon Lagoon I feel reinvigorated and excited that there are so many more immersive ride experiences yet to tackle that day. Given the economy (increased investment risk for Epic) and COVID (cancelling HHN and gatherings for concerts) I hope execs consider taking advantage of space at Studios to bring in the most popular Epic attractions. Moving Nintendo IPs to some of those spaces, if feasible, would save loads compared to cost of Epic and would surely drive traffic back to that park. The demand could take advantage of the existing hotel capacity that’s been curtailed. We are currently in an era of repurposing. Swipe out Fear Factor stadium, Simpsons, Kids Zone, Shrek, Late Show (sorry) and bring in a redesign of what you’ve got. Where area is an issue, take advantage of height and novel vehicle movement design. Add a screen technology small omnimover movable attraction to introduce relevant pop culture (music) for younger crowds that can be easily relevant and updated with software alone. Think passing thru hologram concert.

I think your concerns are overstated. There were plans to add Pokemon in USF(instead of Kidzone) and Zelda in IOA(Lost Continent) in 2021-22. However due to the failure of Fast and the furious they have decided to play the wait and watch game and temporarily shelved these plans.
They will resume Pokemon and Zelda plans probably after opening Mario World in Japan. Some credible rumours stated that Minions and Kung-fu Panda would soon make its way into USF & IOA.
(There are some wild rumours doing rounds which state that Star Trek OR Lord of the Rings too may be added.)

Like John pointed out, after Epic Universe opens, they'll add, say Luigi'Mansion to USF and Kirby's Dreamland to IOA.
PLUS some Fantastic Beasts mini-land . So, I personally think Universal has planned accordingly and I personally think the pressure is on Disney after the not-so-good Star Wars Galaxy's Edge. Even some die-hard star wars fan were calling it a themed shopping mall. I'd skip Disney's Hollywood Studios ( the park with star wars) for Pokemon at USF.

Most people come to Orlando once in 3-4 years, so mostly they won't mind adding an extra day to visit all parks.
If they were to skip, I don't think it'd be Universal (Mario, Pokemon, Zelda, Potter) in fact it may end up being the half-baked Star Wars land.

I respect your opinion but I don't think Epic Universe is a mistake (especially with USF & IOA running out of space).

I think I’m in agreement with John; I think they’ll do the HP thing and plant off-shoot worlds into the Islands and Studios parks to tie into the Epic Universe IPs, especially considering the constant rumors that they’re looking to overhaul the outdated areas mentioned in the article (well, minus E.T.).

Thanks for the great read! I always love reading your articles; the research and often history put into them are fantastic! Keep up the good work!

Thanks for the interesting read. I always love reading your articles; they are so well researched and I love the history! Keep up the good work!

We are annual visitors to Orlando and DVC members, so Disney parks are our first stop, but we do go to Universal. Other than Wizarding World, I have become less impressed with Universal. So many of the RIDES have been replaced by what I call the same ride, different movie. Basically, a car of some type transporting you through a series of screens. Going away is the actual theme park ride, like Jaws. The studios tour of "backlot" movie magic is also gone. These are things that made Universal (and Hollywood Studios) different from other theme parks around the country and why a trip to Orlando is a different experience.

It’s usually a concept once you build it in one theme park, it’ll come to the other ones (like Harry Potter) so they’ll probably build super Mario land and then put 2 other Nintendo properties in Islands and Uni so you have to visit all three. Smart idea and they’ll do exactly that.

They know what they’re doing.

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