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Monday, July 23, 2018

Universal Orlando's rumored new theme park might now have a name

Posted By on Mon, Jul 23, 2018 at 12:45 PM

click to enlarge Universal has built a new access road to its expansion properties a few miles southeast of its current theme parks in Central Florida. - PHOTO USED BY PERMISSION OF @BIORECONSTRUCT
  • photo used by permission of @bioreconstruct
  • Universal has built a new access road to its expansion properties a few miles southeast of its current theme parks in Central Florida.
Despite Universal still not officially confirming the new park on their recently purchased southern property, we now know what the name of the theme park may be.

Last month Universal trademarked the name "Fantastic Worlds" for use in amusement parks. Around the same time, a supposed guest survey was sent out by the company asking respondents, “Which of these names for a theme park is most likely to belong to Universal?” The options included Fantastic Worlds, Epic Worlds, Legendary Worlds, Legendary Lands and DreamPark.

On a recent episode of the Disney Dish podcast, industry insider Jim Hill indicated he was leaning toward the DreamPark name, since the new park will likely include multiple DreamWorks franchises. But other industry experts, including Josh Young of Theme Park University and Alicia Stella of Orlando Park Stop, both known for the accurate reporting of recent Universal rumors, point to the Fantastic Worlds name.

click to enlarge PHOTO VIA UNIVERSAL
  • Photo via Universal
Stella looks to one of the rumored lands for the new park, Super Nintendo World, as a sign for the worlds being a part of the park’s name. While the location of the Orlando Super Nintendo World has yet to be confirmed, the name itself has already been announced. The Super Nintendo World for Orlando is rumored to have moved from Universal Studios Florida to the new park so that Universal Creative can expand upon their plans for the land, building what is expected to be the largest of the three announced Super Nintendo Worlds.

The first Super Nintendo World is now under construction at Universal Studios Japan, with the Universal Studios Hollywood land likely to begin construction very soon.

Nintendo isn’t alone in the use of the term "worlds." Universal has recently moved toward using the term instead of "lands," most notably in the "The Wizarding World of Harry Potter" name.

Though not as strongly rumored as other lands, one of the possible areas in the new theme park may be one themed to the Fantastic Beasts films. This newer set of films is set decades before the Harry Potter films. While it's no secret that Diagon Alley was designed for a phase two expansion where the Fear Factor show is currently located, Universal may instead use some of the concepts slated for this second phase in a brand-new Harry Potter "world" within the new theme park.

The second of the five-film series is set to be released this November with the fifth film tentatively scheduled for 2024, just after the expected opening of the new Universal park. Universal will likely look to this year’s box office numbers to decide if they want to move forward with the larger Fantastic Beasts land within the new park. It seems as though this Fantastic Beasts world may replace the previously rumored Star Trek land.

click to enlarge Trolls out front of the Universal Studios Singapore promoting the new summer Troll events at the park - IMAGE VIA THAIBOOKINGHOLIDAY | INSTAGRAM
  • Image via thaibookingholiday | Instagram
  • Trolls out front of the Universal Studios Singapore promoting the new summer Troll events at the park
The DreamPark name may still be used in the new park for a specific land. The yet unnamed rumored DreamWorks area is thought to have multiple DreamWorks mini-lands within it, similar to Magic Kingdom’s New Fantasyland area. Trolls, which was previously rumored for Universal’s KidsZone after Super Nintendo World shifted to the new park, may now be part of the new DreamWorks land. How to Train Your Dragon, Shrek, and Kung-Fu Panda are also believed to have mini-lands within this section of the new park.

During the discussion regarding the recent survey question on the aforementioned Disney Dish episode Len Testa, founder of Touring Plans and Disney marketing expert, pointed out that Universal's use of the term "dream" in their new park may cause Disney to limit their use of this word, which they have previously used in numerous marketing efforts. With the new Universal park’s marketing expected to be going strong during Disney World’s 50th Anniversary celebration, this ability to essentially steal away the word from Disney might prove to be too tempting for Universal to ignore.

An opening for the new park is expected to be announced sometime in the early 2020s, with permitting for the park being with Orange County within the next few months.

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