A year-round apocalypse is coming, and you’ll probably enjoy every minute of it. An attraction at Universal Hollywood is about to become an indoor maze based on the popular zombie TV series The Walking Dead. Originally hosted under a seasonal tent, it is set to become a year-round event.
Construction is already under way to turn the California theme park attraction into an apocalyptic Atlanta, the city where The Walking Dead originally took place and regularly films. The entrance is set to be a “smoking” helicopter “crashed” into the side of a building, and as you enter, you find yourself inside the Harrison Memorial Hospital. This was where the whole TV show started, as Sheriff Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) woke from a coma to find the hospital evacuated after the zombie outbreak.
The Walking Dead indoor maze will have 20 animatronic walkers, as well as 12 actors dressed up to scare visitors. During the Halloween season, the actors will double.
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The year-round apocalypse attraction is set to make visitors feel like they are taking the same journey as Rick Grimes, including a radio broadcast telling survivors to get to the prison as soon as possible. It’s unknown if visitors will be entering a tank surrounded by walkers or encountering Merle Dixon on the rooftop.
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In one part of the attraction is the infamous double doors marked with the words “Don’t Open, Dead Inside” and several animatronic hands grabbing for visitors. Another scene represented by the attraction will be the Del Arno Foods warehouse, where walkers are swarming the loading dock.
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The year-round apocalypse will feature several iconic scenes from the first six seasons,and might even have visitors encounter Negan as he confronts the survivors and threatens to kill one. Nobody outside the cast knows who he killed at the end of Season 6, so it’s possible that the crowd will be ushered out through the exit as they hear the “killing blow” behind them.
Universal creative director John Murdy says the team is working closely with the show’s creators to reproduce the scenes as closely as they can. Of course, he knows visitors will want to take selfies with the actors and props, like the double doors with the animatronic hands.
The Walking Dead will present a year-round apocalypse for fans of a show, which Murdy says transcends its own genre.
“It’s unusual for a theme park to have an attraction based on a franchise as intense as The Walking Dead. I think what’s different is that The Walking Dead transcends the narrow confines of horror and is a pop-culture icon watched by millions of people, beyond horror fans.”
Murdy also said that a third of the maze can be rearranged to include the latest events from the show, so meeting Negan won’t always be the last thing visitors experience. This way, the Walking Dead attraction will be different with each season.
If you’re planning to visit the attraction, you might want to catch up on the show so it’s more nostalgic and less of a potential for spoilers. It’s also recommended that the intense remake of Horror Nights should be limited to children over the age of 13, but it depends on the parents and children. Some can handle the year-round apocalypse attraction.
You never know if one of the cast might show up to take selfies with the fans in their free time.
[Image via AMC]