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Universal Studios Hollywood has confirmed that an updated version of its Special Effects Stages attraction will debut at the park in June.

The previous version closed on April 11 to allow construction of a new ride based on the Transformers movies to begin. The new Special Effects Stages will be located in the Castle Theater, the former home of the ill-fated Creature from the Black Lagoon musical show.

Screamscape points to the show's description on the Universal Studios Hollywood website, which describes the attraction as "closed until June". No specific opening date is given for the new Special Effects Stages, although Universal is likely to be aiming for an early June date to compensate for the closure of the existing show and the neighboring Backdraft attraction.

The Special Effects Stages had previously focused on hands-on special effects of the type seen in Universal's classic horror movies, but will now feature modern techniques such as CGI, motion capture and 3-D. The interactive elements of the earlier Special Effects shows, with audience members being invited to take part in the "filming" of scenes, are likely to be retained although there is no confirmation of this from Universal as yet.

In addition to the updated Special Effects Stages, Universal Studios Hollywood will also see the return of King Kong to its Studio Tour this summer. The Kong soundstage which was destroyed in the park's 2008 backlot fire will be replaced by a new, high-tech tour stop known as King Kong 360 3-D.

The Transformers attraction that is being built on the site of the old Special Effects Stages was originally scheduled to open in 2011, although recent rumors have suggested a 2012 completion date. It will mix 3D, high-definition video footage with robotics and a moving vehicle, which suggests it will reuse technology from the Amazing Adventures of Spiderman attraction at Universal's Islands of Adventure.

You can keep up to date with the latest confirmed and rumored opening dates for new attractions through Theme Park Tourist's "New Attraction Watch" section, and by signing up for our weekly newsletter.


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