Why The Thing Could Be Coming to HHN28?

There are two different stories in horror: internal and external. In external horror films, the evil comes from the outside, the other tribe, this thing in the darkness that we don’t understand. Internal is the human heart.” – John Carpenter

As a follow up to a post I did last year titled “Why The Shining Could Be Coming to HHN” I decided I would do a post this year about the Horror Classic that every year at HHN we have one (2013 An American Werewolf In London, 2014 Halloween, 2015 Halloween (Hollywood), 2016 Exorcist, 2017 Shining). This year the Horror Classic that is rumored to be coming is John Carpenter’s The Thing. 

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The Thing (1982) is one of my all time favorite Horror Films. It’s hailed as John Carpenter’s Masterpiece and has had such a big influence on Horror Films with the Best Practical Effects in a Horror Film. The Thing has been at the event before twice for Orlando and once for Hollywood. It was 2007 The Thing: Assimilation for Orlando which was a Original Sequel to the 1982 Version. And then the Remake/Prequel in 2011 for both Hollywood and Orlando.

But why would The Thing be coming to HHN28? Why this year in particular? Well it’s gotten a lot of buzz with rumors and such (And it was on the Hollywood Leaked Lineup). Plus it is actual owned by Universal so they could easily do the Property if they wanted to. There’s even tweets out there that are hinting at it…

Hollywood:

Murdy even acknowledges that he wants to do The Thing and that he is a huge fan of the original film.

He also acknowledges that he is fan of the Maze they did in 2011 for the Remake. Which could be improved upon if they do it this year and even better.

This of course could be The Thing which the film takes place in Snow.

Back in 2016…

Q: Now that you have the Exorcist what is your next dream property to catch?

55:23. Before that they mention they would want to do Evil Dead 2: Dead by Dawn. However, they did do Ash vs Evil Dead last year. But at 55:23 they mention they would want to do the Original John Carpenter The Thing. Which since they did Evil Dead last year does that mean we could get The Thing this year?

Hollywood Codenames:

Murdy released a Film that has a Hint called “Terror in the Aisles” and he confirmed that the hint of the film is that it was released in 1984.

So perhaps with the first hint we are looking for something that involves 1984. A song made popular by Johnny Cash in 1984, a Best Selling Album released in 1984 with a band formed in So-Cal, or a Film released in 1984 that has a Creative force that passed away in the last 5 years.

No songs were made famous by Johnny Cash in 1984 and the only horror filn released in 1984 with a creative force that passed away in the last 5 years is Wes Craven for A Nightmare on Elm Street which is rumored for Orlando but not for Hollywood.

What I found is that for Hint 2. John Murdy stated in a tweet that he went to Bishop Amat and graduated in 1985 which means he started in 1981. And his brother he stated graduated in 1980 which means he started in 1976. That means a Band formed in So-Cal before 1976 and has a Best Selling Album released in 1984.

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Van Halen formed in 1972 in Pasadena California. Which gives them time to go out and perform. They released a Best Selling Album in 1984 called 1984. 

In which Murdy when I sent him a connection said that the 1984 connection with Van Halen is correct. Which means we have two hints to solving the codename which is that Terror in the Aisles was released in 1984 and Van Halen released a Album in 1984 called 1984. 

Last year I requested Murdy a idea for a David Bowie Inspired Codename which was for Ash vs Evil Dead with the Album Scary Monsters (And Super Creeps) with the song Ashes to Ashes. Here he responded with 1984 a song by David Bowie.

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Which is what I’m leading to. 1984 is off the Album Diamond Dogs by David Bowie. One of the songs of that album is called Sweet Thing (Reprise) and that Sweet Thing is the codename and the lyrics reveal the theme of the Maze. And what are the lyrics?

“If you want it, boys, get it here thing
‘Cause hope, boys, is a cheap thing, cheap thing
Is it nice in your snow storm
Freezing your brain?
Do you think that your face looks the same?
Then let it be
It’s all I ever wanted
It’s a street with a deal
And a taste
It’s got claws
It’s got me
It’s got you”
So Sweet Thing/1984 = The Thing. Let’s move onto Orlando.
Orlando Codenames:

The Scene could refer to the Blood testing scene. This could refer to one of two connections with Poison.
1. It could be referring to how the Thing gets into blood and in a way poisons the blood.
2. At the end of the film Macready offers Childs a bottle of whiskey but a popular theory is that the bottle has poison in it.
KurtRussell
But when can we expect the Maze announcement?
If true, the Release date of The Thing is June 25th 1982 which means this year it will be the film’s 36th anniversary. Could that be the announcement day?
Why don’t we just wait here for a while… See what happens.
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Do you think The Thing is coming to the Event? Tell Us in the Comments!

 

Strange Things in the Code…

Our tech corresponent The Web Master is at it again and he seems to have found some interesting things in the code…

Looking at Universal Orlando’s website code we have spotted a marker for a possible seventeen video clips!  Yes seventeen!

See the code below:

// for video
var video = $(‘#hero-vid’).get(0);

$(‘.ipvid1’).on(‘click’, function (e) {
playVid(1); // Stranger Things
});

$(‘.ipvid2’).on(‘click’, function (e) {
playVid(2); // Coming Soon
});

$(‘.ipvid3’).on(‘click’, function (e) {
playVid(3); // Coming Soon
});

$(‘.ipvid4’).on(‘click’, function (e) {
playVid(4); // Coming Soon
});

$(‘.ipvid5’).on(‘click’, function (e) {
playVid(5); // Coming Soon
});

$(‘.ipvid6’).on(‘click’, function (e) {
playVid(6); // Coming Soon
});

$(‘.ipvid7’).on(‘click’, function (e) {
playVid(7); // Coming Soon
});

$(‘.ipvid8’).on(‘click’, function (e) {
playVid(8); // Coming Soon
});

$(‘.ipvid9’).on(‘click’, function (e) {
playVid(9); // Coming Soon
});
$(‘.ipvid10’).on(‘click’, function (e) {
playVid(10); // Coming Soon
});

$(‘.ipvid11’).on(‘click’, function (e) {
playVid(11); // Coming Soon
});

$(‘.ipvid12’).on(‘click’, function (e) {
playVid(12); // Coming Soon
});

$(‘.ipvid13’).on(‘click’, function (e) {
playVid(13); // Coming Soon
});

$(‘.ipvid14’).on(‘click’, function (e) {
playVid(14); // Coming Soon
});

$(‘.ipvid15’).on(‘click’, function (e) {
playVid(15); // Coming Soon
});

$(‘.ipvid16’).on(‘click’, function (e) {
playVid(16); // Coming Soon
});

$(‘.ipvid17’).on(‘click’, function (e) {
playVid(17); // Coming Soon
});

$(‘#vidClose’).on(‘click’, function (e) {
$(‘#videoModal’).modal(‘hide’);
});

Last year Universal Orlando had seven total videos spots in their code. This included the five intellectual properties houses and two promotional videos. The rumored leaked house list contained six IP houses and three originals.  Universal could very well do one to two quick teaser videos and one full promotional videos. So, with house and promotional videos it be reasonable to see Universal doing 10-11 videos total. This brings up the question what is Universal doing for the other extra six to seven video spots? This is very weird!

There have been a few rumors already to a Universal Orlando having a tenth house. This very well could point to why Universal plans to shoot so many videos. This tenth house has also bee rumored to be an add ticket like HHN 26’s ‘The Repository’.  If this rumor is true Universal will have plenty of opportunities to market this new add-on house with six to seven potential videos.  Or could the “shows” referred to in the Stranger Things marketing actually be for more than two?  Whatever is planned, it sure looks like Universal has plenty up their sleeves right now!

Let us know in the comments what you think these extra videos could be for…

Stranger Things CONFIRMED for HHN

Stranger Things Comes to HHN!

The Duffer Brother’s weird world of Hawkins, Indiana is set to come to life in the real world at Halloween Horror Nights at both Orlando, Hollywood and Singapore.  The Netflix series which has become a huge hit with audiences around the world will see guests of HHN28 venture forth into the twisted town, venture into the Upside Down and do battle with Demogorgons!

Set in the 1980s, the first season focuses on the investigation into the disappearance of a young boy named Will amid supernatural events occurring around the town, including the appearance of a girl named Eleven with psychokinetic abilities who helps the missing boy’s friends in their own search.

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The Duffer Brothers developed the series as a mix of investigative drama alongside supernatural elements with childlike sensibilities, establishing its time frame in the 1980s and creating a homage to pop culture of that decade. Several themes and directorial aspects were inspired and aesthetically informed by the works of Steven Spielberg, John Carpenter, and Stephen King, among others, including several films, anime and video games.  It will be interesting to see how Universal incorporates these factors into their maze design for the house.

Expect the unexpected and set foot into the Upside Down as this house is set to be a HHN game changer…

HHN28 Packages & Early Bird Ticket Offer

Starting today, guests can purchase select tickets and vacation packages for the world’s premier Halloween event – Universal Orlando’s Halloween Horror Nights. And for the first time ever, guests can get double the scares with the purchase of a limited time ticket where they can buy a night and get a second night free.

See below for more details on the Halloween Horror Nights offers that are available now.

On select nights from September 14 to November 3, guests will face an era of evil as Halloween Horror Nights 2018 is unleashed at Universal Studios Florida. This year’s event will be the most intense yet, bringing some of the most terrifying names in horror – both from the past and the present – to life in nine all-new haunted houses and five sinister scare zones throughout the park. Guests brave enough to enter the event will encounter everything from iconic horror films to cult classics to terrifying hit TV shows to disturbing-original stories that only the twisted minds of Universal’s award-winning Entertainment team could imagine. And when they need a break from the screams, guests can enjoy Universal Studios’ exciting rides and attractions.

Offer Details:

hhn28

To book the US Packages and tickets CLICK HERE.

To book the UK tickets CLICK HERE.

Full event dates:

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Jack the Clown becomes Walt Disney!?

My dear friend, actor extraordinaire and the man I have called the ‘Lon Chaney’ of his generation has taken on a new role.  Us HHN fans all know him best as the mischievous and maniacal HHN Icon: Jack the Clown; under the greasepaint he’s known to everyone else as James Keaton and has been entertaining audiences for many years in a huge variety of roles.  That’s why when local Orlando based production company needed an actor who can morph into just about anyone, they turned to James.

Layne Stein and Tony Wakim who created Pattycake Productions are releasing a number of “unexpected musicals” with various tributes, this one however is for Walt Disney.  Shot locally using the great talents of Central Florida the piece is inspired by the P.T. Barnum film The Greatest Showman and charts the history of how a boy from a quiet backwater ended up changing the world with his love of animation and storytelling.

Entitled The Disney Showman: The Legacy of Walt Disney, it is a new four minute music video charting the story of Walt using songs from the soundtrack to The Greatest Showman.  This is not the first feature in their impressive repertoire of mixing cultural references, other works include: the story of Maleficent mixed with Michael Jackson and Beauty and the Beast entwined with Juston Bieber songs (plus many more!).

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Pattycake turned to James as they know they needed someone with the skill to pull-off the greatest showman of all.  Pattycake producers had worked with James a number of times, no less at HHN and when he played Beetlejuice for a number of years back in the day.  James said:

“It was great experience,” adding that he “fell in love with the concept and hope everyone enjoys it. I enjoyed going back and watching lots of Walt interviews and footage. Tony and I would send videos and stuff back and forth before production. The idea of playing Walt was a bit nerve-wracking, but once we started to play it felt comfortable.”

Click below to watch.  It is awesome whether you’re a Disney fan or not!

Thank you to Attractions Magazine for breaking this story.  For more info on Pattycake Productions, please click here.

HHN Meets RunDisney!?

Yep you read that right, Universal is currently pondering the idea of adding some kind of competitive running race to HHN and we couldn’t be more excited!  We’ve all seen runners running along the road, they pretty much look like zombies, just add in the traditional blood pouring from their nipples (yes that is a thing!) and they could just as well be the undead.  But fear not, running is not that boring, it can be fun and it is obviously a great way to stay healthy (ironically for this race’s theme).

RunDisney over at the Mouse House has been running for many years and runs very popular events that see people travel from all over the world!  The ‘Disney Difference’ is that you can run through the parks, have unique photo opportunities with selected characters and take home some exclusive bling.

So Universal are thinking of getting in the big running business, a process that they have tested over the years with a number of small employee only 5Ks being held.  This all came to light when Universal released their usual customer survey which included a number of ideas as special add-on tickets for HHN28.  Here’s the screenshot:

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It’s also worth noting that the same survey also asked guests what their thoughts were about starting HHN earlier than before, say August, (though we’ve heard rumors of a Sept 14th start) and whether they’d like a VR experience back (Repository sequel).

I mean, where do they get their ideas from…

Whether Chris inspired this choice or not (likely not as they have already prepped with employee only 5Ks) it has to be seen that us at HHNU cannot be more excited for this idea!  We think it would be great and would LOVE to run a 5K whilst getting chased by Scareactors – it is GENIUS.  Please do it!!

Would you love to see this?  Would you take part?  Let us know!

Featured image courtesy of Mary DiNapoli

We’ve cracked a HHN code!

Every single year for Halloween Horror Nights there has been dozens upon dozens of rumors about certain properties coming to the event. One of the Properties that is hot on the rumor chain right now and just finished filming is Halloween.  We’ve looked at the clues and we believe we’ve cracked them!  This IP fits the clues given so far and here’s why…

For those unaware Halloween is having a new movie being released in 2018 that is being produced by Blumhouse who have worked with Universal on The Horrors of Blumhouse Maze from last year (plus many others!). Recently, Halloween finished up filming and will probably start post production soon. Halloween has been at the event back in 2014 for Orlando, 2015 for Hollywood, and 2016 for both. All of this mazes have been loved by both the HHN Fans Community and the wider General Public.  And the HHN Gods also love Halloween

Could Michael Aiello be hinting at Halloween by going to the Myers House? Before HHN27 Michael tweeted out about reading The Shining and then it came to the Event.

Could this also been a Hint towards Halloween coming back?

Murdy had dropped a hint of a film called “Terror in the Aisles”  that will lead you to a Codename.  John Beal did the Soundtrack for the film. “John” is a common name. John Beal. John Murdy. John Carpenter. John Beal also did the Soundtrack to the film and the Intro Track to the film is a Copy/Nod of the Halloween 2 Main Theme.

Could John Murdy be saying that since the new Halloween film is coming out that since “Terror in the Aisles” Opening Track is a Copy of the Halloween 2 Main Theme and the New Film coming out this year is supposed to be a Direct sequel to the original. So is John Murdy saying that Blumhouse’s Halloween is the REAL Halloween 2? 

Halloween-2018-set-with-Jamie-Lee-Curtis

In addition there has been a Leaked Lineup that went around Inside Universal that had mentioned Halloween coming back to the Event.

The final thing I have to say that could be a sign of Halloween coming to the Event is a article that came out a few days after last year’s opening night via Forbes.

So whilst we were all distracted by HHN27, Murdy was laying the groundwork for HHN28!

Murdy: “We have a great relationship with Jason Blum and I certainly have my eye on his new Halloween film which will be released in October 2018. We’re always trying to keep our fingers on the pulse of where the horror genre is going and Michael Meyers is one of my favorite properties. I’m really excited to actually have Jason here to celebrate the opening night with us and I’m going to probably hit him up for a copy of the script.”

Jason: “You say John Murdy already has his eye on Halloween for next year? Oh boy. I’m getting him a script immediately, we have to do Halloween. Are you kidding me? We have to do it, we hope to, he hasn’t agreed but that would be amazing. We did announce that Jamie Lee Curtis will be returning to Halloween, that’s correct, but will there be any more legacy surprises for fans? There might be. No comment.”

Mr Sandman bring us a dream… Do you think Halloween is coming back for HHN28? Are you excited for it? Let us know in the Comments!

 

Where’s the dates?!

One year ago today, the dates for HHN27 were announced. Here we are on the same day and we’re still unsure what date HHN28 will begin, though we have ideas….

Last Year’s Timeline

Before uncovering the most educated guess on the event dates for this year’s Horror Nights, let’s take a look at the timeline for last year’s announcements.

  • February 23: Dates officially announced. 34 nights of terror at Universal Studios Florida
  • March 29: First house announcement; American Horror Story
  • May 19: The Shining house announced
  • June 7: Tickets officially available for purchase
  • July 27: Ash vs. Evil Dead house announced
  • August 15: Bill and Ted announced to be the last year of the long running show
  • August 16: The Games of Jigsaw house announced
  • August 17: Scare zones and shows revealed
  • August 24: Commercial directed by Eli Roth released
  • August 29: Horrors of Blumhouse announced
  • August 31: All original concept houses announced

As you can see, they really held back last year until August, with a whopping 6 house reveals. This made a lot of die hard fans very anxious as well as generated lots of hype and speculation. Going by this timeline, that would mean that the dates could be announced quite soon.

Going back a ways though, we see a trend of the event dates being announced later and later. The 24th year of the event, we saw an unmatched, next day date announcement that came in the form of a thank you to guests and media for the immense success of HHN24. The end of the video was interrupted by jack the clown and ended with the dates of the 2015 event. It effectively teased Jack the Clown as well as announced the dates. Although the video was publically released on HHN’s official Facebook and other avenues on November 1st, the same night as the final night of the event, the video was sent to certain media companies (ex. Inside the Magic and Theme Park Review) on a flash drive EVEN EARLIER on Halloween 2014.

Ever since Horror Nights 25, event dates have been announced later and later. Will this trend continue and we won’t learn of this year’s dates for perhaps another month or so? This, unfortunately, is in UO’s hands.

HHN28’s Likeliest Dates

Going to a calendar, we can see that Friday, September 14th is the most likely opening date for Horror Nights 28. The going trend of the event is a mid September opening; 27 began on Sept. 15, 26 began on Sept. 16, 25 on Sept. 18, etc.

 Our predictions for the 2018 HHN event dates

 

dates

Our predictions call for 34 possible nights of the event, with the first Wednesday being October 3rd. There could be more than 34 nights during the run of HHN28, however, because there are some dates in question. We are unsure of the possibility of any of the following dates being event nights as well; October 29, 30, and November 1st and 4th.

Last year’s Halloween fell on a Tuesday, and the Monday before it saw Horror Nights open. This year, Halloween lands on a Wednesday, leaving Monday and Tuesday possible haunt nights for Universal Orlando. November 1st and 4th are question marks as well, being that the last weekend is always a bit off. For the past two years, the last weekend did not contain a Thursday or a Sunday, but we have seen events get extended in the past to meet demands or weather closures.

We are keeping our fingers crossed and our eyes open for the official unveiling of this year’s Halloween Horror Nights event dates, and we’ll get them to your own eyeballs the second they’re out!

The Walking Dead Returns… but NOT how you think!

From 2012 to 2016 the popular walker franchise ‘The Walking Dead’ haunted both the streets and houses of HHN Orlando.  Starting off with a single house in 2012 with ‘The Walking Dead: Dead Inside’ the popularity of the show grew enough for the whole event to be walker themed in the following year where every single scarezone was themed to this franchise.  The houses and zones would keep coming until 2016’s ‘best of’ house featuring various scares and popular set pieces from the series would complete the show’s reign of terror at HHN.

Fans of the show have loved experiencing the sets and scares of the show where most of the seasons have been represented (though weirdly none of the characters were) but HHN fans have been less than positive.  HHN fans have decryed from the roof tops of their boredom of the repeated visits of the walkers and their lack of character driven narrative thanks for the most part as the absence of the actors likenesses in any of the houses and zones.  But fear not HHN fans, TWD isn’t coming back in a way you think…

We’ve heard from 3 sources, 2 of which are trusted, that many of the masks, props, costumes and setpieces from the 5 years of TWD back catalogue are currently being refurbished for use at HHN28 in Orlando.  It appears from what we’ve heard that the masks particularly are being altered and “re-colored” for use of another possible hoard of zombies coming this Fall.  But for what purpose?

The rumor according to one source it would appear that a scarezone, probably around the Fast and Furious area, is being designed to celebrate the life and times of George A. Romero who sadly passed away last July.  The rumor goes that since he passed there has been a huge increase of interest in his work and what he did for the horror genre.  For those not in the know, Romero is the grandfather of zombie horror, starting with Night of the Living Dead (1968), which is often considered the genesis of the modern fictional zombie genre. Other films in the series include Dawn of the Dead (1978) and Day of the Dead (1985) (including their remakes).  Aside from this series, his works include The Crazies (1973), Martin (1978), Creepshow (1982), Monkey Shines (1988), The Dark Half (1993) and Bruiser (2000).

The rumor says that Universal via HHN want to honor his work and provide a scarezone that not only scares HHN goers but also shows the evolution of the zombie genre.  The very first movie that kickstarted the whole zombie on film craze was ‘Night of the Living Dead’ shot on a very low budget.  Shot on black and white film it terrified audiences with it’s gritty realism and tension packed pace.  It is this the rumor says is to be used for the refurbished masks and costumes where the masks will be hand painted black and white in honor of this genesis movie.

The backup for this rumor comes from two areas.  The first is the legal side of proceedings where the ‘Night’ movie is now supposedly public realm and not officially recognized by copyright.  It appears that the original distributor (Walter Reade Organization) did not copyright the original prints.  And in 1968 US law defined that all original prints required a copyright.  As this never happened if could mean that other media companies could use the source material for their own means.  In the 1980s a slew of zombie pictures were released all with the same similar ‘night’ prefix that indicates this absence of any proper copyright.

The copright issues are explained here:

The other factor is Romero’s passing.  Since he left this mortal coil there has been a release of novels, books, graphic novels, mentions and merch all honoring his life and work.  The idea could be that a fitting tribute be made for this year’s HHN in Orlando that honors him and educates everyone how he created this zombie genre and how without him we would not have the huge cacophony of zombie movies/books/TV shows etc that we have today.  Black and White zombies at HHN have also been done before but this was in a house, so how they’ll work outdoors in a zone would be very interesting to find out.

So there you have it: 3 tips and some rumors to belt it all up.  Are we right?  Well only Universal knows that.  We’ll just have to wait until September 2018…

For more info on Romero read our tribute to him that our HHNU staffer Rob wrote last year HERE.

Would you like to see a Romero tribute scarezone?  Do you think this would work?  Let us know in the comments!

Our buddy Fowl Owlerson helped contribute to this article, go read his blog HERE.