After two and a half years of construction, the Wizarding World Of Harry Potter will have its grand opening on Thursday morning, and the online tickets for the event have reportedly been sold out.
According to reports, the red carpet event scheduled for Wednesday will include some stars from the Harry Potter films. However, fans shouldn’t expect to see Daniel Radcliffe, who played Harry Potter; Rupert Grint, who played Ron Weasley; or even Emma Watson, who played Hermione Granger. The author of the books, J.K. Rowling, will also not be attending.
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The stars who are scheduled to appear are James and Oliver Phelps, who played the twin brothers of Ron Weasley; Warwick Davis, who played Professor Flitwick; Tom Felton, who portrayed Draco Malfoy; and Evanna Lynch, the actress who played Luna Lovegood. The red carpet arrivals are scheduled at 6:30 p.m. and the program is set to start at 8:15 p.m.
The Wizarding World of Harry Potter is likely to be the most popular attraction that will ever open at the Universal Studios Hollywood, judging by the crowds that regularly flock to the park’s Orlando and Japan locations. Though tickets may be sold out online, they will still be available at the gate on Thursday.
— Forbes (@Forbes) April 6, 2016
Reportedly, the theme park had to stop online ticketing transactions because of the sheer multitude of buyers. Fans were offered specialty products during the opening, such as VIP Experience and Front of Line ticket option for the opening day. These were not just offered for Thursday, but for Friday, April 8 and Saturday, April 9.
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Larry Kurzweil, the president of Universal Studios Hollywood, said that the incredible consumer demand speaks volumes of the arrival of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter and the “dramatic 75 percent transformation of Universal Studios Hollywood into an entirely new destination.”
Fans will be able to see rides and other attractions at the six-acre simulacrum. Fans could also line up to buy wands and robes similar to those seen in the Harry Potter film franchise.
The much-anticipated attraction will include the recreation of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. It will feature the office of Professor Dumbledore, the Portrait Gallery, and the Defense Against the Dark Arts classroom.
Two rides will be available at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. The first is the 3-D Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey ride, and the next is the park’s first-ever outdoor roller coaster called Flight of the Hippogriff. Accordingly, the Forbidden Journey is a 360-degree experience where riders will be placed at the end of a robotic arm, after which they will travel past domed projection screens and animatronic characters.
— Gabriela Teissier (@gteissier) April 4, 2016
Another attraction at the theme park is the Hogwarts Express. This is the fictional rail line that shuttles students to Hogwarts. Fans could have a photo op here, as well as the opportunity to sit inside the train’s compartment. It’s also the place where fans will be able to grab refreshments.
— Marc Graser (@marcgraser) April 6, 2016
The Wizarding World of Harry Potter will also feature souvenir shops recreated from the movies. Zonko’s Joke Shop will sell pranking knickknacks; Honeydukes will sell sweets, and the Owl Post is where Potter fans will get the chance to mail out a Hogsmeade-postmarked letter. For park-goers who want to buy a magic wand, Ollivander’s is the place to go. For $47.95, guests can purchase their very own interactive wand that they can wave to make display items come to life. The ordinary replica wand costs $39.95.
[Photo by Handout/Getty Images]