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Universal Studio's Halloween Horror Nights 2011

Lorrelle Monninger (CableMuse.com) Cable Muse Network, LLC

by Lorrelle Monninger

October 1, 2011 - Universal Studios Hollywood holds an annual scare festival called Halloween Horror Nights. The 19 night event started on Sept.23,2011 and runs through Oct.31,2011. The gates open at 7:00 pm to 2:00 am Friday and Saturday nights and on Sunday nights the park opens at 7:00 pm to 1:00 am.

Globe Theater Universal Studios (CableMuse.com) Photo by Lorrelle Monninger
Click to Enlarge Images

For the past four years the opening night of Universal Studios Halloween Horror Nights has a red carpet event called Eyegore Horror Awards. The award show is for directors, writers, actors of the best Horror films from the past year. The Eyegore Awards Show is at the Globe Theater inside the Universal Studio's Theme park. Celebrities attend the awards show several of them go inside the park and experience the mazes and the Bill and Ted's Excellent Halloween Adventure Show.

The Halloween Horror Nights event is not intended for children under the age of 13 due to the adult content and the level of scare factor. There are clowns chasing guest around with revving chainsaws, monsters and creatures popping out of the shadows to scare you, areas of thick fog and eerie music, and strobe lights.

When entering the theme park visitors experience a thick reddish fog that engulfs them as they become aware of a soundtrack that has screams, moans, dark music with a penetrating beat that seems to surround them.

While walking along the street towards the cue line, guests see Halloween merchandise that is theme related for sale. Outside on the street and throughout the park are carts that have disposable cameras, and blinking toys for purchase specific for this event. Half way down one street is a roped off area and 100 feet from this area is "The Master Of Ceremonies”, a demonic clown that gives insults to random guests passing him. His helpers are demonic and insane clowns, some of them brandishing chainsaws.

Universal Studios Drill Team (CableMuse.com) Photo by Lorrelle Monninger

Throughout the park there are scare zones which are themed based areas that have actors’ props, special effects, lighting and sound effects and fog. Actors dressed as zombies and circus freaks wander through these areas. In these areas the freaks and zombies are looking for guest that already seem scared of the area or not paying close attention of their surroundings. They find the perfect targets, guest not paying attention and sneak up on them and scare them.

For the first time in 2011, Universal Studio's has five mazes. Each one of the mazes has realistic props that are impressive.

Rob Zombie's House of a 1000 Corpses in 3D

Patrons are given 3D glasses and then walk through the doors to be transported back to the backwaters of Texas to "The House of 1000 Corpses movie", where they experience what has happened to two teenage couples who were in the Texas backwoods and stumbled upon a family of sadistic killers, this family holds captive and torture the teens. The members of the family see the visitors as they are walking through their home.They are now after the guest and are coming after them.

The 3D effects and the lighting are so well done that the guests are questioning if they are really seeing things until suddenly members of the sadistic family pop out and scare you.

The Thing Assimilation

Guests enter an isolated outpost in Antarctica, where scientists are missing. The guests walking through the outpost are unaware of the shape shifting alien life forms that are killing anyone or anything in their path. As the patrons wander throughout the outpost they start to see odd things, movement under the tables, flashes of lights and unknown things jumping out from dark shadows. In the communication room there is a scientist on the radio calling for help, while the alien in the room is attacking him. In the next room another alien is eating a human as another one is coming through the door.

Eli Roth's Hostel

In East Europe there is an Hostel where the most terrible horrifying things are happening. This is a torture factory where guests are being sold to the highest bidder for sick and twisted and demented experiments of pain and death.

Alice Cooper's Welcome to My Nightmare

When guests enter this maze of twisted pathways they are entering the twisted mind of the rock star Alice Cooper. The visual effects and the props (a smoking electric chair, demonic dolls and huge pythons on the attack) are of what nightmares come from. There are guillotines, foul smells decaying flesh and the bad odor of something burnt.

La Llorona: Villa De Almas Perdidas

As Imagined by Dego Luna . Guest will uncover the legend of Llorona, a woman that went mad, drowned her children then herself. Llorona's cursed soul is stuck on earth searching for the souls of her  murdered children. The first area the participants come to is a lake with float bodies of little children. Llorona pops out of the shadows and scares guests as they are walking by and shes is wailing and grief stricken, but deadly.

The Wolfman: The Curse of Talbot Hall

Guest enter a castle wandering throughout the corridors where there is movement in the shadows and guest sense that something or someone is watching them as they are walking throughout the rooms. Downstairs of the lower level of the castle guest hear a growl and they see the lite of the full moon through the second story window. There is a werewolf. He's hungry and reaches out to grab the guests. Somehow the werewolf misses the guests.  Were wolf is now hunting the guests. Can the guest make out of the castle alive?

Terror Tram Scream 4 Your Life

Guest ride a tram through an area of the Universal Studio's back lot and are told of a rumor of a hooded ghosts killing off tourist. The tram driver gets the guest to exit the tram and then says "I'm not sticking around there’s another tram on the far side of the war of the world’s set."

As the guests start to walk up the small incline on the street standing there is a row of chain saw bearing clowns motionless that the guest have to walk past. A siren blows and the chainsaws are revved and the clowns are chasing the guests. Once the guests get past the clowns they are now walking around one of the most famous sets of Hollywood: the Bates Motel and Psycho House.  Norman Bates is walking among the guests dressed in an old dress and apron and an old gray wig that has the hair nicely kept in a bun. in his right hand is a butcher's knife. At times he raises the knife as he’s going to attack an unaware guest from behind other guest sees Norman, he then weaves through the crowd of wandering guest and then talks to random guest he invites some of the guest to stay in the motel (blond girls to stay in the motel) other's he ask for them to come up to the house to meet mother, that she makes the best cookies.

The guests cautiously walk past the Psycho House and around the corner. There is an eerie fog bank that guest walk through. They see a crashed plane with debris scattered everywhere. This is the War Of the Worlds set. In the far distance the guests see the trams waiting. The guests walk cautiously through this set of debris. In the shadows lurking is the hooded ghost and his zombie friends they are slowly, creeping up on the guests hoping to kill them all before they reach the trams.

Bill and Ted's Excellent Halloween Adventure Show

This show makes fun of the past year's pop culture entertainment, movies, music and news. The show stars Bill and Ted and their famous telephone booth transporter. There are little themed skits, choreographed dance numbers and celebrity lip-sinked songs. This show is not intended for children under the age of 13 due to adult content.

Demonic Clown Drill Team

Just  before the last hour till the closing of the park is a group of demonic clowns brandishing chainsaws. They are lined up in formation motionless. The chainsaws are not revved. Brave and curious guests walk up to theres clowns some are just staring while others are taking pictures. A siren blows and the chainsaws are all revved in unison. Chaos breaks loose and the demonic clowns are chasing guests with the chainsaws and scattering the crowd. Guest are scared, screaming and some are laughing. The siren blows again the clowns stop they get back in formation, the chainsaws off and wait for the next set of unaware guests to walk by.                                 

Entertainer and performer Lorrelle Monninger joined Cable Muse Network LLC in 2011 as a staff writer.  Monninger’s reports cover Hollywood and the Southern California region.

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