Universal Studios’ Halloween Horror Nights are in full swing, right now.
And one of their two brand-new mazes took eleven years to become a reality.
That’s how long Universal had been negotiating for the rights to the 1973 horror classic The Exorcist, said Universal Studios Creative Director John Murdy and Art Director Chris Williams. Both had long hoped to have the opportunity to create an Exorcist maze for Halloween Horror Nights.
This year, John and Chris finally had the chance to do that.
At August Halloween convention ScareLA, in Pasadena, John and Chris previewed the two new mazes they were creating for Halloween 2016. Not surprisingly, their new Exorcist maze was the highlight of their presentation.
Among John’s tasks as Creative Director is making certain an environment is authentic. So, besides thinking about the visuals and audio, he had to consider scents.
Since the other new maze he and Chris have created for 2016 is “Krampus”, John told ScareLA attendees, he had to come up with the smell of “burned Christmas tree”.
And for The Exorcist? We will leave that to your imagination. But we can’t say we envy him that part of the job.
After their presentation, John and Chris talked briefly about their experiences, finally getting to bring The Exorcist to Halloween Horror Nights 2016.
On this almost-Halloween edition of Over Coffee®, you’ll hear:
How John and Chris tapped into their own fears to make this particular maze especially scary;
The biggest creative challenge they faced, as they planned the setting and effects;
A somewhat spine-tingling story about the day they announced the “Exorcist” maze (do you believe in coincidences? If not, these are going to scare you!)
Universal Studios’ 2016 “Halloween Horror Nights” are happening from now through October 31st. Here’s the link for times and their four locations.