House Reviews, pt. 2

Continuing our house reviews, we have two IPs and one original..

Saw: the Games of Jigsaw – ★★★★1/2

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Being huge fans of the Saw movie franchise, we were ecstatic to find out it was coming back for this year’s event. With more movies that came out since the last haunted house featured at horror nights, there was plenty more material to work with. This house promised stuff from every movie in the franchise, and boy does it deliver! Including a trap from the newest movie that has yet to be released, this house have every memorable moment from the Saw legacy. It’s a literal hodge podge of different traps and death scenes throughout the series, and we love it! The highlight scene is what we will call, “many pigs, which are real?” that contains a whole group of the infamous pig-with-long-hair character, some of them are mannequins, and some of them are scareactors standing still. Throw in a strobe light and the terror ensues! This house is definitely worth a second visit!

Keep your eye out inside this house for what is known as “Guest activated triggers,” which are basically buttons that you can press to make different things happen.

American Horror Story – ★★★★☆

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First time we went through this one, I was getting scared at every corner. This one is a doozy for sure! From the amount of scenes you walk through (17!) to the amount of time it takes to get through (up to 8 minutes!) this house is a beast! They packed this thing to the brim with references to the show, from entire scenes to tiny details, everything is here! The guy who plays Evan Peters’ role in Roanoake is an uncanny look-a-like to boot. This house definitely deserves a second and even third visit, as well, as there’s so much to see. Prepare yourself for this one!

Dead Waters – ★★★★☆

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Another extremely aesthetically pleasing haunted house offered this year at Horror Nights. Dead Waters starts in a huge, moss ridden, French style river boat. The boat is sinking to one side, and so is the floor you’re walking on! Although not too high on scare factor, this house has tons of fantastic color and theming to really please the horror nights aficionato.

Be on the lookout in the haunted attraction for the Voodoo Queen herself, and well as some chickens!

 

House Reviews, pt. 1

Opening weekend of Halloween Horror Nights 27 was tons of fun. The crowds weren’t too huge, the lines were rather short, and the houses were fantastic. Let’s start our reviews with three of the haunted attractions…..

The Fallen – ★★★★☆

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With awe inspiring decor throughout, this house is definitely one of the more aesthetic offerings this year. Think the house “Gothic” from Horror Nights 22. Guests encounter winged creatures, seemingly straight from hell. Walking through this vast, and very tall cathedral, guests travel through dark hallways and come face to face with these eternally damned souls.

Although not very high on the scare factor, this house is definitely jaw dropping if anything. From the great effects, to the flying bungee cord stunts, this haunted house is definitely one not to miss. And yes, you read that correctly, there are indeed multiple actors fastened to bungee cords located within. They fly right towards you, and it’s a sight to behold.

Ash vs. Evil Dead – ★★★★☆

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A fan’s delight! If you have seen this show and enjoyed it as much as we did, you are in for a treat with this one. With tons of scenes taken directly from the TV show, this house is definitely the comedy house of the year. Between each scary scene, Ash comes to your rescue with a witty line everytime. All the actors are the closest look-a-likes Universal could find, which really help to bring the guest right into the show. Those of you who are afraid of chainsaws may still be frightened by Ash’s main weapon of choice (besides his boomstick,) but fear not, for he is the good guy who has come to rid the world of the evil deadites that now roam the Earth. Even though it’s his own fault.

Be on the lookout throughout this house for appearances of the infamous Necronomicon, the cabin that started it all, and “Ashy Slashy” the puppet version of Ash.

The Horrors of Blumhouse – ★★1/2☆☆

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We wanted to like this house. We really did. We watched all of the movies to prepare, but unfortunately it’s just lacking in actual scenes from each respective movie. The house begins with Sinister. The movie offers quite a few death scenes that could have been included in the house, but instead we simply walk through the attic, then two hallways, each with Mr. Boogey popping out in various corners. There’s no beach chairs getting pulled into a pool, there’s no tree with people hanging from it. Murder scenes are just painfully missing. After one scene and two hallways of Sinister, we move onto the Purge. Again, nothing here from the movies specifically. Think the Purge haunted house of HHN25; an indescript home invasion. Two scenes of the Purge, and you make your way into Insidious. Now this section is considerably longer than the first two movies presented, including actual scenes and deaths from the movies, mainly the newest installment, Chapter 4, which is still slated to release in 2018.

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After walking through the Insidious section, you’re then thrust into a long, storbe lighted hallway where all of the characters from all of the movies are mixed together to startle you all over again. Now don’t get me wrong here, this house wasn’t dreadfully terrible. It was just underwhelming. There were a few fake out scares that managed to frighten us, but overall it left a bit to be desired.

Keep following our page for more house reviews coming soon!

 

Media Event Q&A

We had the privilege of attending this year’s opening night media party, and we had a great time. For those hardcore HHN fans, we have transcribed the Q&A session here for your reading pleasure. Grab some popcorn and get ready to get some great information on this year’s event.

Q: Besides the Academy of Villains [show], was there anything else affected by the hurricane, anything else that needs fixing up?

A: You know, we have minor cosmetic damage across the property. I think what’s wonderful about it is that storms pass and we [still] get the opportunity to give the guests the great event that we have. I think that honestly we, you know, all of our thoughts and prayers are definitely with everybody, but it’s also an opportunity to provide an escape for them, even if it’s only for a couple of minutes in a soundstage. So they can have A/C. (all laugh) If you want to see something uplifting, it’s amazing to see how all of the team members here at Universal came to help each other out personally with whatever they were effected by the storm, and then come together and get this event up and running, so [it’s an] amazing family to be a part of.

Q: If guests could choose only half of the houses, which ones would you suggest for them to go to?

A: The closest ones to them. (all laugh)

Counter Q: It’s like picking your favorite child, do each of you have your favorite house?

A: Yes, they are my children and I love them all equally. That’s the political answer, too, but I usually do have a favorite house, but it doesn’t occur until the end of the event, you know. I have favorite scenes, favorite houses, favorite moments as we go through, but I don’t have one yet for this year, cause I haven’t really seen everything yet, you know. I have to go through night after night and then really meet my kids and get to know them better. What’s also good about the event is that your favorite house is gonna be different than your favorite house is gonna be different than your favorite house.

We have got such a great slate of properties and original storytelling this year that everybody is gonna get something out of the event.

Whether something truly terrifying or really entertaining, it’s gonna happen, and I think that that’s one of the great hallmarks. Up to a point at the end of the event, yeah, we’re gonna have favorites, but as of right now, level playing field. Everything is game.

Q: Earlier you said the event itself is the icon essentially this year. Fans love their icons. Can you elaborate on that statement?

A: I think that Halloween Horror Nights is the festival itself. It gives us an opportunity to place an umbrella over the IPs and over the original content, the scarezones, the shows. It shows that Halloween Horror Nights in and of itself is bigger than anything we would bring or put into the park. Halloween Horror Nights is an institution. We are on our 27th year and it’s only going to grow from here. And so I think that it is iconic of us to be able to take on that mantle. You know, years ago we had festival of the dead that ran as a parade through the park, and I think that calling upon that as kind of an homage is also part of what makes this year iconic in nature. It also gives the opportunity, here in the scarezones, is to create apex predators in each zone. Instead of having this one icon, we have got Sam hanging out in Trick R Treat, we got alien scientists out in Invasion, we have got our bone reaper that hangs out in festival of the deadliest so, it opens up the ability to get these main predators in each area.

Q: What kind of steps did it take for you to secure the rights to have The Shining be part of the Halloween Horror Nights family?

A: Most of it had to do with begging, pleading, crying, chanting, and some phone calls. It was a long process. Much like other mazes that we brought in the past, whether it be American Werewolf in London, Exorcist, Halloween; those are things that as fans, we have been seeking for years, and things just happened to work out this year that we were able to work with our partners and were able to secure that. It’s actually a very fortunate thing and we are all very excited for you guys to go and do that [house].

Q: The Shining is very psychological, so what was your biggest challenge in trying to convert that into a house that we could experience?

A: That is an awesome question, and that’s what we asked ourselves on day 1. Stanley Kubrick takes this huge Overlook Hotel, but he is doing it from a claustrophobic view when you watch it, and I think that’s what we decided to tackle first; the idea of expanse, but also feeling claustrophobic. So we checked the boxes, moments that you want to see, which I think are very important, but also our design team did an amazing job of giving you tight corridors while at the same time giving height. Sometimes height can imply more of a massive structure, so there’s alot of implication that really sells in the house. Kudos to our design team who did an amazing job with that. Thematically when you walk through the maze, you are observing as that individual who is going through the process of having The Shining and being attacked by the Overlook, which is something that Kubrick does such an amazing job of, that you go along Jack’s path.

Jack’s course that he has throughout the film, you are going through that entire process as you travel from the beginning to the end of the maze.

Q: So you got the Blumhouse, and you’re showing a sneak peek of the upcoming Insidious. You’ve got Jigsaw. Has it gotten easier working with other studios that have active upcoming properties as far as this is what we are going to do, this is how we are going to have your upcoming project without spoiling anything. Like working with Walking dead previously, you have been working with Horror Story throughout the seasons, has it been easier to work with these studios in bringing these things to life?

A: I think there is a level of trust that has been harbored. I can easily say that there is a hard earned trust. There is an established trust now that they know where to take care of their kids, you know what I mean?

We take alot of care in trying to represent the best we can their properties and I think there is a growing trust between us and those studios.

Plus it’s really fun, cause sometimes we see scripts before everybody else, and we see screenings before anybody else, and it’s really really fun.

Q: As a first timer from Atlanta, have you ever been told you went a little bit too far, and what do you have to say about that?

A: Everything is subjective, right? You’d be surprised. Sometimes something would go on like “oh I hope this isn’t going overboard” but everybody ends up loving it. You never know, life and art is subjective, so you never know what’s gonna come your way. There’s also the opportunity for us if there’s something we want to have work, it might be physically impossible because we might not know how to do it yet, but we will figure it out.

If we care enough we will go down that path and we will figure it out.

I think between us we put everything on the table. We absolutely have conversations and then we edit from there, but we always put everything on the table. So I think if we say “that’s too far” then that’s WAY too far (all laugh)

Q: With all of the work that goes into the detail and stuff on the scarezones and the houses, are there any easter eggs that you would want us, the fans, to keep an eye out for?

A: For the scarezones, Trick R Treat in Central Park, when you pass through and first look, it may appear that is sort of the party at the beginning of the film and the neighborhood where the trick or treating is happening, but if you really pay attention to all of the detail, the little easter eggs that are dropped in, you will see this fever dream of the story of Trick R Treat. It is all laid out for you, all of the pieces of the story is there. I’ll bring up Dead Waters because it’s based off the scarezone from that street, if you saw the shack in the street scarezone, you would have noticed alot of the decor, we have taken very specific care in selecting different pieces from that. So if you have photos from that year, you may be able to find some of those pieces existing in the house also. I have mentioned this morning, one of my favorite authors is an easter egg represented in the house as a zombie.

Q: How many people do you expect to come through this year? We like to give information to our followers and subscribers about how to make an experience better, so are there specific days or dates that we can share with them that might be a little less crowded? Any tidbits that you would have for people as they are walking the park as far as making the most of their experience or how they should spend their time?

A: Okay, number 1) Alot (all laugh) Number 2) We are doing more nights than ever before, so there’s alot of different choices. And number 3) Don’t pass up the opportunity to go to the bathroom. And wear comfortable shoes. Alot of times we walk through and there is somebody dressed gorgeous and they got their toes sticking out of their expensive shoes.

I’m like “Man, come and sweat in tennis shoes,” you know? Just be comfortable. Just come to hike around, have a good time, and party.

When I was asked tips on how to avoid the scares, you can’t. There’s nowhere that’s safe except bathrooms. We are not legally allowed……yet.

Q: Eli Roth directed one of the commercials for this year and I was wondering, can we expect him to have more involvement in the future in terms of IPs?

A: What I can say is that Halloween Horror Nights is an ever changing event. There is always going to be changes in attractions, whether people want them or not. Because of that, we are never gonna stop looking for people to work with, or groups of people to work with, or companies to work with, licensed piece of art or installments to be able to partner with in order to create to greatest event that we can possibly can for our guests, year in and year out. You dropped his name as far as the commercial is concerned. Wasn’t that a great commercial? And did you see the director’s cut, too? That was awesome. It was fantastic, and I think what that also does is it also points out the fact that Horror Nights 2017 is a party. It is a festival. You have no choice but to enjoy yourselves as somebody who, when people gets scared around you, everybody laughs. That is the first thing that happens when anybody gets scared, they scream and either they laugh or somebody else laughs. It’s a wonderful thing, it’s a positive thing. I also think that, with Eli Roth if you watch the director’s cut version, from all of us, my favorite thing to see, like we were talking earlier about Halloween Horror Nights itself being so iconic, is to have Eli Roth say, you know, here is a master of horror films who is a fan of Horror Nights himself. Whoooo, that was amazing. I was so happy when I saw that.

Q: How often do you guys monitor, randomly walk through and just kind of make sure that your vision is still being undertaken?

A: All night long. Every night. Every house, every street zone, we are constantly roaming. We also have performance coordinators with us assisting us so we are constantly walking through the entire event. And we practice what we preach, we all go by and wear our comfy shoes right when the event starts that we wear out by the end.

Q: Since this is the last year for Bill and Ted, what are you doing to send it off in style? I’m also curious to hear why is this the last year for Bill and Ted and for next year, will there be anything else replacing it?

A: Okay, I’m gonna work backwards here. C) Can’t talk about it. C) Are we doing anything special? Yes. You’re gonna have to go see the show. And then A) Why is it the last year for Bill and Ted? I think that to my answer earlier is that we are an ever changing event and it is subjective for sure.

People are gonna have a different opinion and it’s going to become a debate topic over whether or not Bill and Ted should stay with 28 and 29 and 30, but I think that if we are doing, I think we give our guests a huge disservice if we don’t constantly evolve and elevate this event and change it year in, year out.

I think that’s what you’re seeing; different parts come and go. I think it’s a great opportunity for guests to experience a different, new, and revitalized event.

HHNU’s First Media Event!

That’s right, we made it! After two years of dedication to Halloween Horror Nights coverage, we finally made it to the prestigious HHN media party, and that’s all thanks to you guys, our readers. Your support feeds our obsession and commitment to getting the information that we do, as quickly as possible. Thank you so much!

So What IS The Media Party?

Opening Night Media Party, as it’s called, is a closed, invitation only event that takes place in sound-stage 33. It boasts tons of free food and beverages, and offers the opportunity to mingle with HHN big wigs, fellow HHN loving media publishers, and scareactors before the main presentation begins, with a Q&A afterwards.

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The food was astounding. From a myriad of hot hors d’oeuvres like miniature beef wellington, jalapeno poppers, and buffalo chicken eggrolls, to name a few. There were also multiple meat carving stations offering beef, pork, and lamb. Additional dishes included nachos with all kinds of dips to choose from, delicious shells and cheese (with or without shrimp), fish tacos, and tons of different deserts.

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The nacho station. The cheese was nice and spicy!
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Coffee and desert station

Scareactors were roaming the venue during the “welcome reception” portion of the party. They were from all parts of the event (houses and scarezones,) and it was a really neat way of getting our first look into the various characters and themes of this year’s event. There were aliens, clowns, vampires, and everything in between. Check out our livestream here for a full look at the food and scareactors that were present.

The Main Presentation

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Upon the main stage area, the media presentation took place. It included cameos from Bill and Ted themselves, and characters from each house and scarezone to represent their respected property. Patrick Braillard hosted the main event, where he described each house and scarezone in detail, and we learned a ton of cool things about each of them. Each haunted house and scarezone had it’s own little stage with decorations, props, and actors that could be found within. Watch our livestream here on our Facebook page to see the entire presentation.

House Displays (click to enlarge)

Scarezone Displays

 

“You know, I think that every single year we put on Halloween Horror Nights, it’s not only a challenge, but it’s a labor of love. We start months in advanced, this year it was 14 months. We have already started [20]18. Yeah! We are already well underway with 18. It goes from a very small group of people, and it suddenly blooms into hundreds and then thousands of people that all work in unison to try to put on the event. And I can say that was all surety, there is no team member at Universal Orlando Resort that does not in some way become impacted by the work that goes into bringing this event on a yearly basis. Every single person, in some way shape or form, works to provide this for all of the guests, and that’s kind of an amazing undertaking.”

Q&A Session

The portion of the presentation with the most media inclusion, the Q&A session gave us all the opportunity to finally get our pressing questions answered, and make light of things we’re all curious about. This portion took about 17 minutes, and anyone who had a question could ask (so long as the question could be answered without giving out confidential information.) Please check out our Q&A transcription for all of the questions asked along with the answers given here. Plenty of fantastic information was given out.

R.I.P Tours

Last but not least, our entire party was split into multiple R.I.P tours, which is a guided tour through all of the haunted houses, rides, and shows with front of line access throughout the night. Along the way, tour guides give fun facts and interesting tidbits of information about the houses, scarezones, and other aspects that go into making the event what it is. R.I.P tour is a very exclusive experience available to all guests willing to pay the extra money for this incredibly special way of seeing this amazing event.

 

ScareZone Super Show: HHN’s Patrick Braillard and WWE Superstars Cody & Brandi Rhodes

This is the show to take with you on the flight down. First up is 30 Minutes with Patrick Braillard – Show Director for Creative Development and we talk all about HHN27
THEN 40 MINUTES with HHN Superfans, The American Nightmare & Mrs. Nightmare CODY & BRANDI RHODES. They know their stuff and we had a blast talking to them!

Follow Patrick: @hhnmeanone
Follow Brandi: @thebrandirhodes
Follow Cody: @codyrhodes
PICK UP ALL OUR MERCH AND EVERYTHING YOU NEED AT SCAREZONE.COM and join us on the PODCRUISE.

 

Is this TV show teasing HHN28?

Okay, we know HHN27 hasn’t even started yet and prey this vile hurricane passes without death, damage or delay but in the meantime we wanted to share with you a really interested fan theory that we received today.  Remember, a fan theory is a totally unsubstantiated theory cobbled together from fact and rumor, nothing more.  So here goes: is American Horror Story: Cult referencing (or Easter egging) HHN?  If you haven’t seen the latest episode of everyone’s favorite horror TV show we suggest you do as so far it is proving to be a good one!

We posted many moons ago (and we were the first too!) to say that AHS was to be the new The Walking Dead for HHN, in as much as, AHS is set to return to the event in multiple years like TWD used to.  You can read about that here.  This said, with both HHN26 and HHN27 Universal will have covered every season within a house, apart from the current season of Cult. So it has to be a fair bet that Cult is likely to be a house (or maybe scarezone?) for HHN28.  This portion of the theory is pretty speculative but with some foundation, now onto the theory section – is this new season teasing HHN28?  Here’s the clues we saw from the first episode:

Clowns, clowns, clowns – wait are those two familiar?

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Every true HHN fan knows who Jack and Chance are and their most iconic appearances and outfits, so that’s why we were surprised to see two very familiar faces!  The guy on the left looks like Jack from the Carnival of Carnage in 2007 when we became the ringmaster of his own carnival. The clown on the right has a very striking appearance to Chance with her garb and makeup from last year’s HHN26.  Tenuous or are we are on to something here?  Compare for yourself:

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The Comic Book…

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HHN has it’s own event made brand for any houses that they want to tie together from this fictional comic universe, namely Ultra Violent Comics.  The UVC brand has been seen many times at HHN and is most commonly used as facades for the houses to inform guests that they are now entering a comic book world.  Below is HHN25’s Asylum in Wonderland house:

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A comic was a key plot ‘Macguffin’ in the first episode that brought Twisty the Clown into the episode and like UVC the design of the comic is very similar in those classic 1960/70/80s horror comics aesthetic.  We could really see a similar facade for this show. at HHN28..

A HHN tradition:

One word: school bus.  The school bus has been with HHN for decades.  We’ve walked through it in houses, we’ve run past it while being Purged and seen murderous school kids use it as transportation.  That darn school bus has popped up more times at HHN than all the event icons put together!  (It’s even in the popular HHN podcast ScareZone’s logo!) So that’s why we were pretty surprised to see it, randomly, dumped in a forest where Twisty makes his first kill of the season.

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Our iconic HHN school bus popping up randomly in this first episode or was this planted here?

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So there you have it.  Our first fan theory for HHN28, even before HHN27 has even started!  Do you think Cult will appear at HHN28?  Or are these just coincidences?  Whatever the answer I am sure we will all stay tuned for AHS Cult airing every Tuesday on FX in the US and every Friday on Fox in the UK.  And remember HHN27 is just a week away!!!

Let us know your thoughts in the comments!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

HHN Prep Marathon 2017

It’s a no-brainer to say we’re excited for this year’s Halloween Horror Nights, but now that all of the event’s houses and scare zones have finally been revealed, it’s time to let the anticipation build to terrifying levels of – well, terror – with our very own HHN Prep Marathon. This year the team at Halloween Horror Nights is showering us with an embarrassment of riches in terms of original content and IP houses. To prepare for the event, we’ll be looking at the films and television shows that are being directly adapted for this year’s IP houses and scare zones as well as some movies that appear to have inspired the original haunts.

Depending on how much time you’re willing to spare and how much viewing you’d like to do, we’ve divided this marathon into three parts:

  • The Essentials– Obvious picks, but these choices are a must-see before stepping into this year’s event.
  • The Second Tier– Have a few more hours to spare? These are a few more flicks to get you hyped for this year’s HHN.
  • The All-Nighters– Calling in sick on Monday? Well, if you think sleep’s overrated, you can’t go wrong with these picks.

The Essentials

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The Shining (1980) – If you watch only one movie to prepare for this year’s Halloween Horror Nights, let it be the Stanley Kubrick classic The Shining. Like last year’s The Exorcist house, this maze has garnered the most buzz even before it was announced back in May. We’re all waiting to see how the talented cast and crew at HHN are going to bring to life some of the most memorable scenes in horror film history: the elevator of blood, Danny’s big wheel rolling through the hallway, the “Here’s Johnny!” scene, the chase through the snow-covered hedges, and too many more to name. Of course, none of these scares will compare to turning a corner and seeing a grown man in a bear costume…

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Insidious (2010) – The first of three series featured in the Blumhouse haunt, Insidious is a film ripe for the Halloween Horror Nights treatment. Featuring memorable monsters, some quality scares, and great locations like the ghostly dimension known as the Further, the only negative to having Insidious at HHN this year is that it has to share the spotlight with two other film franchises.

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Ash vs. Evil Dead (Pilot) – For the sake of time, we’re limiting this selection to just the pilot episode, but in reality, the entire series of Ash vs. Evil Dead is definitely worth a watch. Get ready for scares, gore, gallons and gallons of blood, and a few belly laughs along the way. Because the show is a direct continuation of the Evil Dead trilogy, there’s a good chance that this year’s house could feature some familiar locations from the original three films. Perhaps we’ll also see director Sam Raimi’s Classic Oldsmobile Delta make an appearance.

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The Purge: Anarchy (2014) – Although the Blumhouse maze will be featuring Insidious, The Purge, and Sinister, I really do think the house will focus primarily on the first two, as the films in both the Insidious and Purge franchises offer a greater variety of scenes and locales that would lend themselves to memorable HHN set pieces. Of the Purge films, specifically, I believe we’ll see a focus on the second installment in the series, Anarchy, simply because the team at Halloween Horror Nights may want to avoid some of the more heavy political content of the third movie, Election Day. Arguably, Anarchy also happens to be the best film of the trilogy.

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American Horror Story (Pilots for Season 2, 3, and 6) – As we all expected, American Horror Story is back at Halloween Horror Nights and this year’s house looks to focus on the events of season 2, 3, and 6, subtitled Asylum, Coven, and Roanoke, respectively. As a fan of the show though, I do feel these are the three weakest seasons, with Roanoke being the low-point in the series. Regardless, there is enough creepy imagery across all three seasons to make for a really terrifying maze.

The Second Tier

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Trick ‘r Treat (2007) – Perhaps the best film to utilize the Halloween holiday since John Carpenter’s Halloween (1978), this anthology film weaves multiple tales all set during the same evening on October 31st. The film spawned one of the newest horror icons in Sam, the boy with the big bagged head. Expect to see Sam wandering the streets of Halloween Horror Nights in his scare zone along with witches, wolves, and all manner of ghosts and creatures from the film.

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Saw (2004) – This year’s Saw: The Games of Jigsaw maze is set to be a best of compilation of the most memorable and brutal traps throughout all the films in the Saw franchise including the soon-to-be-released eighth installment, Jigsaw (2017). While Saw 2 (2005) and Saw 3 (2006) are real standouts in the series, there’s no way we could recommend any film other than the one that started it all and created a tradition that ran for seven consecutive years: “If it’s Halloween, it must be Saw”.

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Hatchet (2006) – One of 2017’s original houses, Dead Waters, features a Louisiana swamp, voodoo, and a decaying haunted village. Adam Green’s 2006 film Hatchet features much of the same plus a hatchet-wielding mutant named Victor Crowley. Sure, there are probably better horror films set in New Orleans, but none are as purely joyous and visceral as Hatchet.

The All-Nighters

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Evil Dead 2: Dead By Dawn (1987) – Frankly, the entire Evil Dead trilogy is worth watching repeatedly, but if you’ve only got the time to watch one, let it be Evil Dead 2. Essentially a remake of the original film, this Sam Raimi-directed sequel ups the gore, the gags, the goofs, and the comedy. Best of all, with most of the movie’s characters trapped and unable to cross a broken bridge, the bulk of the film rests on the very capable shoulders of the great Bruce Campbell. Hail to the king, baby!

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Plan 9 From Outer Space (1959) – When Invasion! was revealed as one of this year’s scare zones, my mind’s eye immediately shifted to black and white and I couldn’t help but think of the classic sci-fi horror films of the 1950s. Movies like Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956), It Came From Outer Space (1953), and Howard Hawk’s The Thing from Another World (1951). If I had to pick one film from the decade though, I’d go with Ed Wood’s hilarious but totally earnest foray into extraterrestrial terror Plan 9 From Outer Space. For those unfamiliar, Plan 9 is one of the great original “so bad it’s good” movies. The film’s production and director were so bizarre that the story was later told in 1994 in the film Ed Wood, directed by Tim Burton and starring Johnny Depp.

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Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure (1989) – It’s only appropriate to honor the dearly departing staple of Halloween Horror Nights that is Bill and Ted’s Excellent Halloween Adventure by watching the movie that started it all. For many HHN fans, the Bill and Ted show has been an integral part of their yearly Halloween Horror Nights experience and while we’re sad to see it go, we’ll always have the memories and we’ll always have the movie to remind us that while it’s perfectly fine to be bogus, we must never forget to stay excellent to ourselves and to each other.

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What do you think of our list? Any other suggestions we might’ve missed? Please let us know!

-Freddy

Original Houses Announced by Universal for HHN27

USA Today got the exclusive first look at the original houses for HHN27 at Orlando. There are four original houses, all hyper detailed and sound very much like expansions on old themes.  Combining things from HHN’s past with ultra cool new hyper detailings will sure keep HHN fans and general public very happy!  They are (courtsey of USA Today):

Dead Waters will see guests thrown into the darkest portions of the ole’ bayou as you come across a half sunk river boat, and walk through the swamps. These are the lands of the Voodoo Queen and her hoard of different creatures, from zombie people to zombie animals.

Scarecrow: The Reaping will take guests to an abandoned, drought-ravaged farm haunted by ornery scarecrows. Universal sent out a casting call seeking skinny guys who are well over six feet tall to don the straw-filled costumes.

The vampire-themed The Hive skewers more to the ferocious Nosferatu take on the monster than the classic, more suave Bela Lugosi version. It will be set in the 1980s and feature a period vibe.

The Fallen will take place in an ornate cathedral and pit eternal winged creatures against mortals. Expect lots of stunts with the beasts leaping and flying overhead.

For more info and pics head to USA Today for the scoop!

How excited are you for these original houses?  They all sound absolutely amazing!

Blumhouse Confirmed for HHN

Jason Blum, one of today’s most prolific producers of contemporary horror films, brings his signature movies to life in the uniquely distinctive “The Horrors of Blumhouse” maze at this year’s “Halloween Horror Nights” event at Universal Studios Hollywood and Universal Orlando Resort, beginning Friday, September 15.

Based on The Purge, Sinister and Insidious franchises, as well as the upcoming thriller Happy Death Day, Blumhouse Productions (Split, Get Out, Whiplash), is teaming with the creative minds behind the nation’s most intense and immersive Halloween event to unleash three twisted Blumhouse films in one bone-chilling experience at each Halloween destination.

At Universal Studios Hollywood, legions of terrified guests will come face-to-face with the most iconic and unnerving moments from the blockbuster The Purge franchise, Sinister movies and soon-to-be released Happy Death Day. In The Purge, guests will attempt to survive the night as they are immersed in the film’s depraved world, where all crime is declared legal as part of the government’s annually sanctioned 12-hour Purge. In what can be described as a living trailer for Happy Death Day, guests will experience a deja-vu scenario as they are forced to relive the last day of their lives over and over again in an attempt to escape a masked killer. The final nightmare will unmask itself in Sinister, where guests will encounter an ancient pagan deity who is determined to trap them in the sordid shadow world of the dead…for all eternity.

“It’s a privilege to collaborate with Jason Blum and his team at Blumhouse Productions to create ‘The Horrors of Blumhouse,’” said John Murdy, Creative Director at Universal Studios Hollywood and Executive Producer of “Halloween Horror Nights.” “The decisive, inventive way in which he interprets underlying issues plaguing today’s society into his films provides us with a plethora of content to create truly captivating, one-of-a-kind modern horror experiences for our guests.”

Upon entering “The Horrors of Blumhouse” maze at Universal Orlando Resort, guests will attempt to survive three of the most menacing anthologies in the Blumhouse assemblage. First, guests will face the horror of becoming stars in the next home murder movie of the menacing demon Bughuul, from the infamous Sinister franchise. Then, they’ll run for their lives to escape the gang of bloodthirsty home invaders from the first installment of The Purge saga. Finally, guests will be thrust into the Further from the Insidious legend, where they’ll come face-to-face with the paralyzing Lipstick-Face Demon from Chapter 1 and witness Dr. Elise Rainier’s own personal hauntings from her nightmarish childhood in a first-look at Insidious: Chapter 4 – in theaters January 5, 2018.

“We’re thrilled to bring the terrifying vision of Jason Blum and the Blumhouse Productions team to life on an even grander scale at Halloween Horror Nights 2017,” said Charles Gray, Show Director for Creative Development, Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Orlando Resort. “He is the modern voice of horror, whose films run the gamut of intense, in-your-face terror – and this year, we’re taking our guests deeper into the horrific world of Blumhouse than ever before.”

“We are so excited to expand our collaboration with the terrific creative team at ‘Halloween Horror Nights’ this year,” commented Blum. “With ‘The Horrors of Blumhouse’ maze, people will be able to fully immerse themselves into the cinematic worlds of our most terrifying films – with bone-chilling results.”

Universal Studios’ “Halloween Horror Nights” is the ultimate Halloween event. For more than 20 years, guests from around the world have visited Halloween Horror Nights in Hollywood and Orlando to become victims inside their own horror film. The streets of each coast’s event are transformed into highly-themed scare zones where menacing “scare-actors” lunge from every darkened corner. Multiple movie-quality haunted houses are erected throughout the event, based on everything from iconic slasher films to hit horror television series to haunting original stories.

Additional details about Universal Studios’ “Halloween Horror Nights” will be revealed soon. For more information about Halloween Horror Nights at either Universal Studios Hollywood or Universal Orlando Resort, visit www.HalloweenHorrorNights.com.