Construction Begins on Hogwarts Castle for Wizarding World of Harry Potter Theme Park

Feb 11, 2008

Posted by SueTLC
Uncategorized

Construction has begun on building Hogwarts Castle for the Wizarding World of Harry Potter Theme Park at Universal Orlando, Florida. Longtime theme park blogger Jim Hill reports today that work is underway on the castle that will serve as the centerpiece of the Harry Potter attraction, and has photos of the steel beams that are forming the base of the castle. He writes “According to Universal insiders, this bare framework is just the start. In the weeks and months ahead, literally thousands of pieces of metal will be hoisted up & then bolted into place. As a full-sized recreation of Harry Potter’s alma mater is built at the southwestern border of IOA‘s “Jurassic Park” section.”

Also, Mr. Hill gives some reported background on how Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling was persuaded to go with Universal for the theme park, as well as one amusing story involving Harry Potter film production designer Stuart Craig, who is overseeing things for the Harry Potter theme park as well.

“Mind you, that’s not to say that there weren’t a few bumps in the road before Rowling finally agreed to sign that contract. Like that time that Universal Security had to be told NOT to arrest the man who was climbing the hill behind IOA‘s “Flying Unicorn” ride. You see, that man was Stuart Craig. The three-time Academy Award winner who has designed all of the sets for the “Harry Potter” films. And Stuart was just climbing that hill to see if he could find the proper spot to build Hagrid’s cottage.

Speaking of which … “The Flying Unicorn” is expected to shut down sometime in September of this year. So that this IOA attraction can then be transformed into “The Flying Hippogriff.” More to the point, so that work can finally begin on Hagrid’s cottage.”

At last word, the Wizarding World of Harry Potter was set to open in December 1 of 2009, but that remains still in a state of flux, given the early stages of construction for the theme park.





48 Responses to Construction Begins on Hogwarts Castle for Wizarding World of Harry Potter Theme Park

Avatar Image says:

whoo hoo! now if I can only get there!

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‘the flying unicorn’....squees i’m guessing that that is part of the kiddie section?

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Haha! Brilliant! I’m completely setting that year as my near joint Disney/Universal trip down south

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nono, the flying unicorn’s an already existing kiddie-coaster in the lost continent section of Isalnds of Adventure- but it’s right next to where Harry Potter Land (at least that’s what I call it) is going to be

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Excellent!

I already have a trip planned for early 2010 with my grandchildren. Should be right on time.

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Cool this is so exciting – now hopefully I will have money to travel down there when it opens and see it , Its going to have Buckbeak rides! I hope they have a candy store set up just like honeydukes too. sorry getting ahead of myself.

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lol, yes, please don’t arrest Stuart Craig. We kinda need him!

I can’t wait for this to open! It’s going to be so exciting!!

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ROAD TRIP! We South Carolinians are “ready willing and mable!” Iv’e never been to Universal, Orlando. I’ve been to Universal, Hollywood. Hollywood, from what I remember, has no rides, excpt for “usual Movie Set rides” From what I hear, they are almost two different parks![Can anyone fill me in on what the ‘Flying Unicorn’ is???] I, like many, many, many, [etc] fans can’t wait, and am already planning the Family’s Vacation! YIPPPEEEEE!

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Thought you would be excited to read about this. Sounds like it is becoming a reality and not just talk :) I wonder how soon we can book our trip????

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Hey! guys! I only need a plane ticket from Croatia to Florida! who’s gonna be so kind to sent it to me?please…I’m really big fan : )

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Confederate Lady, I am a Floridian so I can say we have two Universal parks here. They are connected to each other but have separate entrances and entrance fees .It is like Disney with their 4 parks. If you go you can by a ticket that gives you access to both parks or you can by a ticket for one park and not the other. One of the Universal parks is like the Hollywood California park and is dedicated to the movies with “rides” like jaws and studio back lots. The second park is Islands of Adventure and it set up like a six flags park with all the amusement rides. They are building Harry Potter in the Islands of Adventure Park.

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Are we talking a full-size recreation of the Great Hall here? It would be the coolest thing ever if everyone visiting the park first went into the Great Hall to be sorted.

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i am from michigan and we started planning our trip in 2010 as soon as we learned about the Harry Potter world….and we are going without the kids

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squee!! so it has started finally. i just cannot wait for this! btw, performingmonkey i completely agree, I hope it has a Great Hall where we the visitors can be sorted and it sort of provides an entry into the whole park. PS:I hope they’ve kept Honeydukes! ;)

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he he. Stuart Craig was looking for the location of Hagrid’s hut. He really can’t make up his mind, can he? :)

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yay!!! omg i SOO can not wait till it comes outt!!! XD they should also make a complete replica of Hogsmeade like it’s described in the books, that would be so kool =] from the Three Broomsticks and Hogsmeade to The Hogs Head and the Shrieking Shack. _ the Shrieking Shack could be sort of like a walk through haunted house type thing. hp fans know its not rly haunted but it would still be kool. =]

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This really is going to be utterly fantastic, and I can’t wait to see the park. The Harry Potter Park is probably the only thing that will persuade my mum to get on a plane.

It’s such a shame that us Brits couldn’t get a version of the park over here in the UK.

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can’t wait for 2010 …

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ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh man i could never go there. i live in ohio. its a long way to florida from here. i would have to buy tikets. i bet they’ll be expensive.

LONG LIVE HARRY POTTER.

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Hahaha, I totally love the part about Stuart Craig climbing the hill behind the ride to see if there was enough room to build Hagrid’s hut. :P Harry Potter dreamland, here I come! :D

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December 2009 is earlier than I was expecting!! This is so exciting!!

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Thanks, Michele….so cool! Like Disney, out here, with ‘California Adventure’ and ‘Disneyland’...I can’t wait. The “one ticket for both parks” sounds too cool. I don’t think Disneyland has that…I could be wrong, but I don’t think so….still can’t wait1 Never been to Universal, Orlando. That’s gonna be as good a time as any! Maybe better! *D

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to michele; so does that mean they took down the island of adventure part of the park?

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HECK YES. HECK FREAKING YES ! =) I am going to make a trip down there when this park opens. And that will be the best experience of my life. :) As for the Stuart Craig story, that was HILARIOUS ! (; Oh gosh, I just can’t wait. Oh gosh. =D

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YAY!!!

I have been waiting for this since the Universal first published the idea!! I’ve already told my parents that s what i want for my graduation present in 2009 so I’ve already secured my spot….. maybe i’ll live there for the summer. Do you think Universal will let me live in the HP section of the park?? Hope so!!

Live, Love, Harry Potter!!

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Christmas at Hogwarts… visiting Gryffindor Tower… Ravenclaw Tower…Slytherin Dungeons…Who else REALLY wants to see the Hufflepuff Common Room that never appeared in the books?? Think they’ll have it?

Oh my GOD, what about Dumbledore’s Office!? faints

I bet you get sorted and everything (maybe take a test or something just for fun?)! EEE!

lol I’ll be 18 by then but eh, who cares! EXCITING!!

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You know what else would be great? Have people try and FIND the Room of Requirement! I mean, if you read the books you know its location but still, Hogwarts is huge, and maybe they’d change the location (I hope they don’t though)! Kinda like the Jekyll and Hyde restaurant in NYC where ya have to find the bathrooms in the bookcases!

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Well, I would be concerned that the attraction area is properly cleared of any stray Dinosaurs from the Jurassic Park Section. Possibly Stuart Craig had a discussion with Hagrid about where his hut should go – “Put it close to where I can see those Dino’s. If I can’t have a Dragon, I will settle for a Tyrannosaurus Rex!”

You know how Stuart Craig has been so accommodating, so what’s a small hike around some pesky strange flying Unicorns. Stuart probably thought, “It’s a good thing that Hagrid doesn’t see this, you know how he is about those Unicorns!”

Better to see some Hippogriffs enjoy the gentle breeze in the area. – but hopefully its just not Unicorns in disguise, so if you ride it make sure it’s a real Hippogriff than a Unicorn that doesn’t like boys.

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Wow. Interesting. I just hope they don’t “commercialize” Harry Potter. That park is going to be sooooo crowded on its first day…. Wow…. just, wow.

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This is the ultimate! I can’t wait to visit!

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OMG! I can not wait to go. I am already pack to go.

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to michele; so does that mean they took down the island of adventure part of the park?

Posted by emily on February 11, 2008 @ 03:27 PM

No Island of Adventure is the name of the park that they are building the Harry Potter World in. Universal studios is made up of the two parks-Universal Studios is the first park they built(Hollywood lot tours etc) and then Universal Studios Islands of Adventure (more of an amusement park with roller coasters and those types of rides) came about 10 or so years later but when we in Florida refer to either park we usually just refer to both parks as Universal.

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Any Florida resident knows that Universal City Walk has a movie theatre so woud’nt it be cool if they have the premier at Universal City Walk and as an added bonus get to see the Harry Potter theme park early, I mean it’s publicity for both park and and movie and what could be better than that.

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Ohhhh this is so exciting!!!!!! It would have been cooler if they could have managed to build a whole new park in England though, Harry Potter stuff only. But still this is awesome!!!! Potterlover1992 I bet they’ll have some discouts and stuff, and I’ve driven from further north to Orlando it’s not that bad if you reall want it. I mean come on it’s Harry Potter.

Yay!

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I don’t think i understood what you said. are “the flying unicorns” and “poseidon” and “simbad” still there? or they took them down?

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my God, they are actually building Hogwarts Castle? if they build it to scale, that would be worth the price of admission alone. i wonder if it will have moving staircases?

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Can’t wait. Unfortunately for me, my son will only be 3 at the time the park opens. I guess we’ll have to wait a couple of years for our visit. I think this will be a great thing for the states. I also think that Dan, Emma and Rupert could make a visit or two a year so we here in the states could have a chonce to meet them. Would be great. The flying Unicorn to the Hippogrif? What about the Dueling Dragons. Is it going to be part of HP World?

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Yeah!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! i CAN’T WAIT TO GO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I will be there for xmas hopefully….and i want to go to honeydukes and ride on buckbeak and everything….cya there!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Well I now know where I want to go on my honeymoon. Heck with Disney World, this will definitely be the happiest place on earth!

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Okay so i live like one hour from Orlando. It’s gonna be like so cool! Stuart Craig is so funny (: LOL. Wait a sec….so does that mean that there are only gonna be kiddie rides there? It would be cool if they made Hogsmeade as like shops. When can we buy tickets??! <3 I LUUUUURRRRRRVVVVEEEEEEE HARRY POTTER!!!!

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OMG OMG, i am in love with everything harry potter, i cant wait for the park to open, t’s gunna be REALLY expensive to get there though, i’m from all the way over in AUSTRALIA!! Why couldn’t it be here instead. oh well, i’ll see some of my felow harry potter die-hard fans one day when i get there, eventually. Keep an eye out for me wen your there< i’ll be the one in the t-shirt that says ‘I LOVE HARRY POTTER!’.

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Fantastic! I will totaly be there when that park opens!

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ROADTRIP!!!!!!!! And I hope that it HUGE, and that they serve Butter Beer!!!!!!

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Im with you happy fan!!! I am so excited for the opening it’s not even funny!! I have always wanted to be apart of the wizarding world and soon i can be! YAYY.. maybe ron will be there?!

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We went on our first trip to Florida last November, to visit Disney & Universal & Sea World…my kids loved the trip so much, they used to ask “Mom, when can we go again?” But they have stopped asking…they KNOW it will be sometime in late 2009, early 2010…hopefully when Leaky and the rest of HP fandom descend on the park…they are checking weekly for details of the construction…LOL

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flying unicorn is a very kiddish ride. I hop they have something good there, cause i think the only thing good in islands of adventure is dueling dragrons. Now THATS a good ride. twists and loops. So much fun.

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oops srry.

Avatar Image says: OMG!!!! I'm so exciting, it's gonna be perfect, absolutly wonderful! I don't think a can wait any longer. [I agree, we sould be sorted at the Great Hall(Griffindor)]

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