Universal Orlando, a world-class vacation destination, is rapidly growing at speeds never quite seen before in the theme park industry. With the rapid growth, however, also comes countless rumors that are spreading like wildfire. Some rumors may be true and some have come true such as those about a King Kong attraction, Fast & Furious attraction, and Jimmy Fallon attraction, but there are also some rumors — major rumors — spreading throughout the web that are utterly false.
Rumor: Universal Orlando is changing Marvel Super Hero Island into a Nintendo-themed “island”
Truth: While a Nintendo themed area will be coming to Universal Orlando it will not replace Universal’s Marvel Super Hero Island at Islands of Adventure. For years rumors have been circulating that Marvel Super Hero Island will be removed because of Disney’s big Marvel purchase in 2009. Disney may now own the rights to the entertainment company but because of Universal’s contract with Marvel when they constructed the “island” in the 1990s, Disney cannot build any Marvel attractions on their east coast property. Universal’s Marvel-themed area may not stay forever but it will continue to stay in place for many years to come. The area’s recent major refurbishments such as that of The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man (2012) and the ongoing Incredible Hulk Coaster enhancements hint out that the resort is not giving up on Marvel anytime soon.
Rumor: Beetlejuice Graveyard Revue will replace Fear Factor Live
Truth: In August, Universal Orlando announced their plans to close Disaster: A Major Motion Picture Starring You and Beetlejuice Graveyard Revue to make way for Fast & Furious: Supercharged in 2017. In addition to this, the resort mentioned that Disaster would close September 8th and Beetlejuice would close at the end of 2015 (now January). Prior to this, several theme park media outlets stated (according to their sources) that a Fast & Furious attraction would take the place of Disaster and Beetlejuice Graveyard Revue while Fear Factor Live would close to relocate the Beetlejuice show. When Universal Orlando made an official announcement on their blog, many longtime fans of the Beetlejuice show believed the show would be relocated to Fear Factor as some rumors said. Some fans of the show took action by signing an online petition to save the show just in case the show does not relocate. The truth is that Beetlejuice Graveyard Revue will not return to Universal Orlando. As listed on the resort’s website, “the show will close permanently” after January 5, 2016 “to make way for Fast & Furious: Supercharged.” For now, Fear Factor Live will remain in place for the foreseeable future.
Rumor: Wet ‘n Wild will be replaced by a theme park
Truth: Wet ‘n Wild is considered America’s first water park. The water park is located just minutes away from Universal Orlando and was actually acquired by Universal not too long ago. In 2013, however, the resort purchased the property the water park occupied and surrounding areas (more than 50 acres in total) for roughly $30.9 million (this land was not originally owned by Universal). On Universal Orlando’s official blog, Tom Schroder, a spokesman for the resort, posted a blog entry announcing Wet ‘n Wild’s closure at the end of 2016. No announcements have been made about what will replace the water park but it most certainly is not a brand new theme park. Wet ‘n Wild is said to be just about 30 acres in size, which is incomparable to Islands of Adventure’s 101 acres and Universal Studios Florida’s 107 acres. To build a competitive and highly detailed theme park, Universal would need at least 70 acres of land or larger. According to recent reports, Comcast, the parent company of Universal, may be interested in purchasing 474 acres south of the current Universal property to construct a third theme park, hotels, an entertainment district, and perhaps more. If this becomes a reality, Universal will need a transportation system to transport guests between their two unlinked properties. Some rumors suggest a transportation center like what the Magic Kingdom has in place will be constructed in Wet ‘n Wild’s location so that guests could access the two properties on a monorail system. Other rumors say hotels will be constructed on the water park’s lot while another rumor states that an entertainment district will be placed on the lot. None of this can be confirmed but what can be confirmed is that a theme park will most likely not be constructed on the Wet ‘n Wild property.