The 1973 Best Picture Oscar statuette for THE STING arrived via armored truck with police motorcycle escorts as Universal Studios Hollywood inaugurated its new movie memorabilia attraction, THE UNIVERSAL EXPERIENCE: BEHIND THE SCENES OF UNIVERSAL PICTURES, celebrating the Studios' historic movie heritage and the first-ever public Oscar display at The Entertainment Capital of L.A.
The Oscar statuette for THE STING is just one of the many gems of rare Hollywood memorabilia at THE UNIVERSAL EXPERIENCE, which provides an extraordinary, close-up view of never-before-seen props, costumes, artifacts and special effects items pulled from many of Universal's most celebrated productions, including recent hits and major motion pictures that have yet to be released. Interactive trivia and film clip kiosks impart a lively hands-on element to the guest experience.
In addition to contemporary films, the attraction draws upon the archives of the 95-year-old studio's library of more than 6,000 titles, including material from its earliest productions.
Among the attraction's highlights currently on display are numerous props and costumes featured in Guillermo del Toro's HELLBOY II: THE GOLDEN ARMY, affording fans an opportunity to see these items first hand before audiences have seen them on the big screen. THE UNIVERSAL EXPERIENCE will be updated regularly with material from new movies and artifacts from the studio's vast archives.
A sampling of other "hero" props on display include the Book of the Dead from THE MUMMY, the Book of Who from DR. SEUSS' HOW THE GRINCH STOLE CHRISTMAS, the Speak 'N Spell transmitter from E.T. THE EXTRA-TERRESTRIAL, Toby Maguire's trophy from SEABISCUIT, Gregory Peck's briefcase and glasses from TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD, military props from ALL QUIET ON THE WESTERN FRONT, and an authentic WWII Enigma machine used during the filming of U-571.
Costumes and wardrobe include garments worn by Keira Knightley and James McAvoy in the Academy Award-winning film, ATONEMENT; Cate Blanchett's regal period pieces from the Oscar-winning film ELIZABETH, Steve Carell's argyle "date" sweater, bicycle and IRON MAN superhero doll collectible from THE 40 YEAR OLD VIRGIN; Brendan Frasier's "hero" wardrobe from THE MUMMY, Kevin Bacon's space suit from APOLLO 13, Toby Maguire's racing attire from SEABISCUIT, as well as Edith Head's Academy Award-winning costume designs for THE STING.
Within the designated behind-the-scenes section, sleight-of-sight special effects include matte paintings used in the making of EARTHQUAKE and in Alfred Hitchcock's THE BIRDS, as well as a selection of models and miniatures used in the making of THE MUMMY, APOLLO 13, JURASSIC PARK and BACK TO THE FUTURE. Guests will also have an opportunity to see original set designs created for the Psycho HOUSE, storyboard for JAWS and mechanical drawings of JAWS' Bruce the shark.
Consistent with a company-wide initiative, the creative team at Universal Studios Hollywood has also employed technological innovations in the creation of THE UNIVERSAL EXPERIENCE designed to reduce energy consumption by half. With the installation of a state-of-the-art LED powered lighting system, THE UNIVERSAL EXPERIENCE joins THE SIMPSONS RIDE in a new era of environmentally conscious theme park ride construction.
Universal Studios Hollywood, The Entertainment Capital of L.A., includes a full-day, movie-based theme park and Studio Tour; the CityWalk entertainment, shopping and dining complex; the Universal CityWalk Cinemas; and the Gibson Amphitheatre concert and special event venue. The theme park features such groundbreaking attractions as THE SIMPSONS RIDE, REVENGE OF THE MUMMY -- THE RIDE, SHREK 4-D, JURASSIC PARK -- THE RIDE, and the world-renowned Studio Tour, which takes guests behind-the-scenes of such landmark TV and movie locations and sets as Steven Spielberg's WAR OF THE WORLDS.
Universal CityWalk features 65 entertainment-themed restaurants, nightclubs, shops and dynamic entertainment options. Universal CityWalk Cinemas, offering the best movie-going experience in Los Angeles, features 19 screens including one of Southern California's largest IMAX venues and newly renovated stadium-style seating.