On February 1, 2021 Blue Man Group announced it was officially moving out of their digs at Universal Orlando. In an article we posted just a week prior, we had heard the writing had been on the wall for a while for the show. Now that it is official, what can we expect to happen to that space?
Well, in our previous article we mentioned that the space is slated to become part of Universal Studios Florida once again. Long-time fans know that theater was once a part of the Nickelodeon tour that went behind-the-scenes of Nick shows when the park first opened in 1990.
In order to compete with Downtown Disney (now Disney Springs), Universal Orlando decided to utilize that space for CityWalk once Nickelodeon moved out. They wanted their own show that could draw folks away from Disney and make CityWalk more appealing as a nighttime destination.
While Blue Man Group did well in the beginning (and cost a fraction to operate compared to La Nouba), the show hasn’t been terribly popular in a few years. Pandemic or not, Blue Man was most likely not going to survive much longer.
Believe or not, Universal has been quietly and actively working on a replacement for the Blue Man Group. As most travel experts agree, theme park attendance is expected to explode later in 2021 or early 2022. Meaning parks in Orlando are expected to fill up a lot in the coming year. How do you add capacity to the park quickly? The BMG (formerly known as Sharp Aquos) theater is the “quick and dirty” way to do that. You have a stage, you have seats. All you need is a show and a few modifications to the theater.
If you’re thinking something like an east coast version of the Secret Life of Pets ride, you’re on the wrong track. Likewise, it’s not a version of the How To Train Your Dragon show headed to Universal Studios Beijing (well, not in this theater anyway). None of those are quick or dirty (cheap) enough.
Keep in mind, this needs to open in 2022. Preferably before the summer if possible. Thus, Universal has about a year to make changes to the soundstage to get this up and running. Since it’s already set up as a theater, that makes the most sense to utilize it as a theater for a future USF show, right?
You still need to create a set of entry and exit doors so guests can easily queue up for and out of this theater. So that will take a little bit of construction. Plus you need to build a queue space for it. Most likely the new queue for the theater show will be to the right of the Universal Plaza stage. This will give them a double whammy and allow for a permanent queue for some Halloween Horror Nights houses as well
What is currently the front runner slated to go in that spot? The Special Effects Show at Universal Studios Hollywood. For those unfamiliar, this is kind of a sister to The Horror Makeup Show at Universal Florida. It features comedy actors, guest interaction and a stunt person provided by Action Horizons Stunts.
Who’s Action Horizons? They provide and train stunt guys and gals for theme parks and movies. While they are mostly out on the west coast, The Bourne Stuntacular means they now have a crew in Florida as well and could easily staff the show.
Most likely the Universal Studios Hollywood clone would be updated for the Florida version to include some new special effects. In theory, this would be more of an “action” show than an informative one. However, these discussions are still in relatively preliminary stages. Anything can happen at this point. Ya know, as long as it’s quick and dirty.
Speaking of, this is a fair time to remind those of you who don’t understand how the theme park industry works: this is not official. No one chisels theme park plans into stone tablets. Things change all the time based on budget, timetables, ego and more. I had my ear to the ground about Blue Man Group closing. Maybe this info isn’t being pulled out of thin air either? Nah. I look forward to reading your fan theories in online forums!