Recent HHN Marketing Wins and Fails!

In the last couple of days HHN has received heaps of praise and complaints in equal measures.  Firstly the praise which came in the form of Universal Orlando winning an “Addy” at the 2018 Orlando American Advertising Awards in the film and TV category for their commercial for HHN27.

Directed by famed horror director Eli Roth the 1min 48 long commercial named “The Best Nightmares – Director’s Cut” won out against other TV marketing campaigns to win the top spot at the local awards.  For those that want a trip down memory lane to see this awesome commercial, click below:

The praise comes for Orlando as the marketing campaign for Resorts World Sentosa Singapore’s HHN comes under heavy scrutiny.   The Advertising Standards Authority of Singapore (ASAS) reported this week that half of all the complaints these received last year from concerned citizens related to HHN.

The complaints focused on publicity stunts that the resort made to better publicize their HHN event on social media, these included three fake memorials located at bus shelters, with the names and photos – along with flowers – of “victims” of a fictional Southpoint Mall disaster, with complainers calling the campaign “tasteless” and “insensitive”.

Another stunt even included a campaign where people had to help locate a missing girl and an advertisement featuring self harm.  ASAS said: “As the feedback was received at the end of the advertisement’s run, the advertiser agreed to take ASAS’ feedback into consideration for future Halloween events.”

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They continued: “ASAS informed the advertiser who created the advertisement that depicted self-harm during Halloween, that it had breached the Singapore Code of Advertising Practice (SCAP) guidelines on violence and influence to children and young people. As the feedback was received at the end of the advertisement’s run, the advertiser agreed to take ASAS’s feedback into consideration for future Halloween events. Advertisers are reminded that advertisements addressed to or likely to influence children and young people should not contain anything that might influence them to harm themselves mentally, morally or physically.”

It can be said that perhaps the mistakes made last year at HHN Singapore are exactly the mistakes that Orlando has avoided by not allowing Sindy to icon the event.  Speaking of Orlando and to end on a positive note, Universal Orlando didn’t just win for HHN at the Addy’s!  They also won best Social Media Video for their highly popular fan video, “You Know You’re an UOAP When…”.  The short video was wildly popular across social media and featured some very familiar HHN alumni sending up their former HHN roles.  If you didn’t catch it, see this incredibly well done and now ‘award winning’ video below!

That’s it for now and we hope to bring you more news and rumors for HHN28 as we receive them…

Bill & Ted Return! (To the Silver Screen)

It seems after years of “will they / won’t they” our favorite time traveling dudes are set to return to theaters soon with a brand new installment to their iconic franchise (which isn’t the greatest of timings now they have left HHN! But hey we can all dream).

Returning with original stars Alex Winter and Keanu Reeves along with co-creators Chris Matheson and Ed Solomon the original team are director Dean Parisot, (Galaxy Quest) and producer Steven Soderbergh.

Solomon told Digital Spy:

“We have a script that we really are proud of, that we worked very hard on, that we’ve done many iterations of – and we did it on spec, meaning we spent years working on it because we wanted to get it right, creatively.

This is not, ‘Hey let’s all cash-in on the Bill & Ted thing for money’ – this is the opposite. This is, ‘We love these characters, they’ve been with us for our whole lives’ – Chris and me, and Alex and Keanu – and we wanted to visit them again as middle-aged men. We thought it would be really fun, and funny, and sweet.”

He went on to explain the plot details where older dudes meet the younger dudes and where the whole movie gets “totally” meta, he said:

“There’s actually a scene – one of my favourite scenes in the whole movie – where middle-aged, 50-year-old Bill and Ted return to the Circle K and see their teen selves and Rufus, and actually interact with their teenage selves, played by their actual teenage selves.”

No release date has been fixed and the filmmakers are still working on the script as they raise finances for it’s production, so it might be some time before we see the duo back in action.

Heck, if they need a hand we know an old prop phonebox that’s going spare…

Would you see this movie?  Do you think Bill and Ted should return to HHN?  Let us know in the comments!

 

 

Bruce Campbell at HHN27?

At the very beginning of HHN27 there had been unsubstantiated reports that Bruce Campbell had been lurking during select nights of the event.  No photographic evidence, social media mentions or any formal confirmation from Universal were ever given.

However, could he finally be coming to HHN?

It appears that his book tour has a date for Orlando being tonight at the Coliseum of Comics at the Fashion Square Mall, so what else could an evil busting hero such as Campbell do tomorrow – say go to HHN?  Here’s hoping.

So, if you’re heading to HHN on Friday for the special UOAP events or for the Soul Collectors games – let us know if an actual chainsaw-hand wielding hero is around!  As this would be perfect timing for an appearance…

Placing this entry firming in the ‘theory’ category!  But keep your eyes peeled.

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.

Scarezones & Show Announced for HHN27

Universal have today announced the scarezones and one additional show for HHN27, they said:

There is one aspect of Universal Orlando’s Halloween Horror Nights no one can escape… the SCARE ZONES. They’re the first and last things you’ll experience, and it’s our chance to make sure there is no way to hide from the scares.

This Halloween Horror Nights, we’re inviting you to join the celebration of blood and bone at what can only be called The Festival of the Deadliest – an ancient tradition from the depths of where nightmares are born.

A gathering of the most unearthly, hellish terrors has emerged from the darkest corners of despair. It calls to those who long for the thrill of the scare and wish to have their fears made real. You’ll be drawn like moths to a flame, and once you join this hallowed celebration, your nightmares will never end.

You’ll find the heart of the Festival on the streets of Hollywood in Universal Studios Florida, but its claws have spread throughout Horror Nights. Here’s what awaits you every night…

Trick ‘r Treat
First up, it’s time to make sure everyone understands the rules of our haunted holiday. Get a proper Halloween education in our Central Park scare zone inspired by the film Trick ‘r Treat. We’re excited to have Sam visit and make sure we follow the rules of Halloween.

As a longtime fan of classic horror anthology films, Trick ‘r Treat is a favorite of mine that pays perfect homage to that genre. In this zone, you’ll have the opportunity to come face-to-face with several characters from the film, and learn for yourself what happens when you don’t follow the rules.

The Purge
Next up, we have a returning story to our New York streets with The Purge. This time, our approach was to create a zone that showed how we think the events of a Purge night might play out in our streets.

There are some fan favorites returning such as our auction and a very polite gentleman. We also have some new surprises in store. For example, how do you clean up all the mayhem on the streets during a Purge night? Visit the clean-crew up crew with their trusty wood chipper to find out. Just don’t get too close…

Altars of Horror
Near the front gate, on Avenue of the Stars, we have our Altars of Horror. For me, this zone is very exciting because we’re bringing something to the streets for our horror fans that we have never done before.

In this zone, we’re taking some of the larger than life characters featured in this year’s houses, and letting them have their own scare zone. A lot of work goes into bringing these iconic film characters to life in our houses. Now you’ll have the opportunity to get an even better look at them.

Invasion!
Set in a time decades ago, our docks in San Francisco find themselves the victim of an INVASION! Visitors from far beyond have crashed their vessel, and are now wreaking havoc on the streets of San Francisco.

They aren’t just here to destroy; these invaders are also on a mission to learn everything they can about us humans. Careful, or you may find yourself on the experiment table at the mercy of an alien scientist.

Roaming Hordes
Lastly, no Halloween Horror Nights would be complete without roaming hordes. This time, it’s the smell of the greasepaint, the roar of the chainsaw. Unhappy with how popular culture has made clowns scary, this grotesque gang of gigglers has risen from the grave, determined to show the world that if you want scary clowns, they’re going to make sure you get your worst nightmare.

ACADEMY OF VILLAINS: AFTERLIFE
But wait! There’s more. The question is, “can you handle more?” I’m happy to share ACADEMY OF VILLAINS: AFTERLIFE will be returning to put on an all-new killer performance. This group of powerhouse artists will make you bear witness to what happens after we leave this life. They’re going to give you one mind-blowing and shocking dance performance that will escort you from this world to the great beyond.

As you can see, the streets will be alive with plenty of horror, mayhem, and celebration. The opportunity to bring favorite horror films to life and tell our own unique horror stories makes every day a thrill. My favorite part of the event is walking the streets each night as our scare actors make these terror-filled tales a reality. Every scream I hear puts a huge smile on my face.

Pick up your tickets today—I’ll see you out on the streets!

Are you excited for these scarezones?  Let us know in the comments!

Universal Cancels Bill & Ted Show After HHN27

It was confirmed today that this year’s Bill and Ted Show will be HHN’s last.  After 25 (26 including this year) the show is to be axed with one final ‘Farewell Tour’.

Jason Horne of Universal wrote:

After 26 years of Excellent Halloween Adventures, these pop-culture icons are bringing their Farewell Tour to Halloween Horror Nights. Party on as the phone booth lands one more time at Universal Orlando.

Over the years, this show has morphed and shifted to fit with the changing tides of pop-culture. But at its heart, it has remained true to its nature. The Wyld Stallyns, from San Dimas—and their time-travelling phone booth—find themselves in the middle of pop-culture-parody chaos and must somehow save the world yet again.

But now the time has come for these most outstanding dudes to find adventure in other places and other times.

On a personal note, I’ve had the pleasure and privilege of writing for and directing Bill and Ted’s Excellent Halloween Adventure for the past 7 years. It goes without saying that this show means a lot to me. Working on Bill and Ted’s has become one of the most enjoyable parts of my year—and they have meant a lot to so many people.

Since 1992, hundreds of talented individuals have worked on its production and numerous performers have graced its stage. It also means a lot to the fans. Wyld Stallyn fans are loyal, supportive and the central reason the boys have had so many adventures.

The “Farewell Tour” gives us the perfect opportunity to give Bill S. Preston, Esquire and Ted “Theodore” Logan a proper sendoff. This year’s show is everything you’d expect from Bill and Ted’s Excellent Halloween Adventure. It’s relevant. It’s ridiculous. It’s irreverent. It’s edgy. And at the end of the day… it’s just a good time.

Whether the new digital age of instant content sharing, Nintendo Land expansion or the rumored remake of Bill and Ted in the works is to blame is anyone’s guess.  For now, we should look forward to 2017’s final run of shows – which this author can confirm are set to be the best yet with some fabulous surprises ahead!

Thanks for the memories dudes – party on.

Are you sad for B&T leaving HHN?  Let us know in the comments!

 

SOLVED: The Mystery of the Missing HHN27 Date

Take a careful look at the below calendar, notice anything odd…

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The 28th September is the answer – why is it missing?  The Thursday before and the Thursday after are all official HHN event nights but not the 28th.  HHN fans have speculated for months why the date was missing from the calendar and why all us Frequent Fearers are effectively losing one night (though admitting gaining others!).  So here’s why… Bill Gates, no really.

Microsoft has just announced that they are taking over the Universal Orlando Resort for their new Microsoft Ignite Attendee Celebration at Universal Orlando Resort.  Here’s the details:

Get ready for one of the biggest parties Microsoft has ever thrown—we’ve reserved both Universal Orlando Resort™ theme parks for Microsoft Ignite attendees only. From 7:30pm to 12:00am on Thursday, 9/28, you’ll have unlimited access to immersive, award-winning rides and attractions.

Enjoy your night in Universal Studios Florida™, the world’s premier movie and TV based theme park. You can climb aboard Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit™ roller coaster and plunge into darkness on Revenge of the Mummy™. Then head next door to Universal’s Islands of Adventure™ for more cutting-edge rides and attractions like Skull Island: Reign of Kong™.

It’s a great way to blow off steam and connect with your peers as you take in an entire universe of action and excitement. It’s all yours for one night only.

More info can be found here.  So there you have it.  No cover-up, rock star concert or movie shoot (all hearty speculations received by HHNU) it is in fact a resort takeover for a tech convention hosted by Microsoft.

So move over Disney hashtag #ThanksShanghai – we have a new hashtag in town!  #ThanksBill

Will you miss the 28th or are you attending this convention?  Let us know in the comments!

 

 

Why I think we WILL have an icon…

Across social media in the last few days people have been sharing a tweet from the official Halloween Horror Nights twitter account suggesting that we won’t be getting an icon this year at HHN27.  Here’s the tweet:

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People have been bummed out saying that this proves that we won’t be having an icon this year and we’re bummed too.  That’s why we wanted to look at this and see if that is the actual answer to the question that everyone has been asking… so here goes, this is why we think we WILL have an icon:

  1. English, English

George Edwards above tweets:

“It means no icon. Or is that what they want you to think?….”

The HHN handle answers to confirm his statement.  His statement however, is not just confirming the no icon but asking a question; he’s asking “that’s what people want you to think?“.  It’s this second part that the HHN handle confirms by the “ding, ding.

This theory is only compounded when the trickster HHN above says “23, 24 & 27” which is in reference to the years that HHN in Orlando did not have an icon.

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2. History, history

The HHN years 22, 23 and 24 did not have an icon.  There’s a couple of reasons for this but primarily the event was run differently in those years with more of a focus on mirroring the Hollywood event was implemented in Orlando.  A contract was signed to make The Walking Dead the main focus of the event and a backstage a reorganization saw the Universal Creative Team whom are usually tasked with building the attractions taking a more active role in HHN, whereas it had always previous been just the Art and Design Department.

Many of these new implementations were scaled back for 25 and 26 with more icon focused events.  Indeed, ironically Chance herself was also scaled back in 26.  But, the organization has moved on from 22, 23 and 24 where the theming was nil (lots of black and roots n’ stuff we now have color, skulls, and bags of theme) and the Creative department now being very busy with Nintendo’s, Fast and Furious’ and Fourth gates to be focusing on HHN.  That’s why we think we will have an icon, as A&D have always loved an icon…

If you wanna read more about HHN History, click here.

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3. Rumors, rumors

We reported here in April that the icon was likely to be scarecrow, this was based on some intelligence we received, this later morphed into the rumor that one of the houses would actually be scarecrow based.  Then comes along our friend the Ifrit…

Ifrit says the house featuring the Scarecrows could be more than just a maze, so could our icon theory from way back be right?  Combine this with the rumors on Lady Death, Nathaniel Crowe, Voodoo Queen, Caretaker and Cindy it would be a bit of let down to not have an icon as there has been so many rumors about one!  The only let down to this theory is that by this time last year, we already knew our icon, Chance.  If all else fails maybe we’ll get a mascot instead…

So there you have it, our theories and ideas behind the icon this year – but what says you?  Let us know in the comments!  Icon or not?

 

ScareZone Episode 35 – Erin Cline AKA Chance!

We had the amazing opportunity to sit down with the Clown Princess her self – Erin Cline, also known as CHANCE! She tells us about her start at Universal, doing Bill & Ted, her multiple appearances as Chance and more. Universal also tried to pull the ScareZone Curse on us while recording…. during the session they made that announcement of the new SOUL COLLECTOR program.

Listen now below or download to iTunes HERE.