5:52 PM - Why did Harry Potter not end up at Disney?
Just passing along a press release, because it sounds interesting...
Orlando Author on Book Tour Will Reveal Why J.K. Rowling Chose Universal – And What She Got In Return
ORLANDO – It might have been the “Wizarding World of Walt Disney,” but the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, the hottest thing to hit Orlando in decades, opened at Universal Orlando instead. How come?
It’s a question that has a lot of people scratching their heads. After all, with its fabled “Imagineers” and deep pockets, Walt Disney World seemed the logical choice to bring the phenomenally successful Potter franchise to vivid life.
So why did the Boy Wizard take up residence at Universal’s Islands of Adventure? It seems Universal made Ms. Rowling an offer she couldn’t refuse.
Seth Kubersky, a former Universal team member and Orlando journalist, will discuss the behind-the-scenes story of how Universal's Wizarding World came to be in a series of talks at Barnes and Noble stores in Orlando, Tampa, and Jacksonville, Florida from October 5 to 9.
Kubersky, a former stage technician and special event supervisor at Universal, is co-author of Universal Orlando 2011: The Ultimate Guide to the Ultimate Theme Park Adventure (The Intrepid Traveler, $15.95).
Among the other insider stories and little-known facts Kubersky will unveil are how Universal’s designers got around the Federal Aviation Administration’s height limit for buildings when they created Hogwarts Castle, and the best ways to beat the enormous crowds that have packed Harry’s world since its opening.
Titled, “Hidden Harry Potter: Seven Insider Secrets of Universal Orlando’s New Wizarding World,” Kubersky’s presentation will also unveil some of the surprising ingredients in butterbeer, as well as where to grab a mug of the wildly popular brew with the least waiting time.
Kubersky is uniquely qualified to reveal the secrets behind Harry Potter’s theme park magic. As technician for the Terminator 2: 3-D attraction, he has ridden the Terminator’s motorcycle on stage. As stage manager for Halloween Horror Nights, he spent whole nights in a haunted house, and performed on stage at the Universal Cineplex as producer of the Rocky Horror Picture Show “Live.” Kubersky also keeps an eagle eye on Orlando’s theme park scene as the culture columnist for the Orlando Weekly, and has contributed to Visit Florida and Virgin Airlines magazines as well as Rudy Maxa's radio shows.
Universal Orlando 2011 can be ordered at a discount at http://www.intrepidtraveler.com/universal
The “Hidden Harry Potter” events will be held at the following Barnes and Noble locations. All events are free.
October 5, 7:00 p.m.
Colonial Plaza Market Center
2418 E. Colonial Drive
Orlando, FL 32803
October 7, 7:00 p.m.
11802 N. Dale Mabry Hwy.
Tampa, FL 33618
October 9, 1:00 p.m.
Mandarin Village Shopping Center
11112 San Jose Blvd., Suite 8
Jacksonville, FL 32223