As September charges inevitably toward October, our thoughts naturally turn to caramel apples, autumn leaves, and Halloween horror hijinks and supernatural shenangigans showcased at major theme parks and Hollywood studio backlots.
Warner Bros. Studio Tour has amplified the scares this year and greatly expanded their roster of spooky attractions, dark mazes, and special ghostly happenings at their historic Burbank, California property. More of an intimate encounter than similar celebrations at theme parks pulling in tens of thousands per night, Warner Bros.' approach operates on a smaller scale, but one no less frightening.
Starting on Oct. 5 and running weekends through the month, Warner Bros. Studio Tour Hollywood dares you to creep into their iconic backlot for Horror Made Here: A Festival of Frights, an unforgettable Halloween party packed with evil clowns, demonic nuns, super villains, demented madmen, possessed dolls, and even the diabolical devil himself. Your deepest, darkest fears come alive in nightmares conjured up from the twisted minds of the creators that brought you IT, The Conjuring, Freddy vs. Jason, The Exorcist, and the DC Universe's, Batman: Arkham Asylum.
"We started last year with three mazes and this year we decided to go bigger, scarier, and more detailed with the mazes that we have," WBSTH Director of Marketing Gary Soloff told SYFY WIRE. "We have two reprisals from last year: It Knows What Scares You, based on the blockbuster New Line Cinema film, IT, and The Conjuring Universe, one of our most popular mazes from last year. I'm really excited about our new Escape From Arkham maze where Joker is your judge. It's based on the Batman: Arkham Asylum video game, with Joker sending you to the asylum as you descend through an 'elevator' where you encounter Scarecrow, Penguin, Two-Face, and Harley Quinn. Scarecrow sprays you with some sort of hallucinogen and you go into this trance, it's going to be crazy.
"We also have The Exorcist Forbidden Screening, so we're taking eight minutes of the most terrifying moments of The Exorcist, set in our church on the back lot. Guests sit in pews and the movie is going to come to life," said Soloff. "Another maze guests should be thrilled about is based on Freddy vs Jason. Visitors board one of our carts and take a night tour to Camp Crystal Lake, set on our backlot jungle set, and get dropped off to go camping. They'll encounter Freddy and Jason and have to make their way through the counselor's office and bunks and walk through an elaborate jungle to escape."
These elaborate Halloween mazes are heavily focused on storytelling and delivering an authentic experience for fright fans, where you can experience real movie props, and walk on hallowed ground where horror history has been brought to life over the decades. Here's a spooky sample of what they're preparing for brave guests...
"CAN YOU SMELL THE CIRCUS, GEORGIE?"
Warner Bros.' creepy carnival hub will be filled with an enticing variety of entertainment options including a live DJ and special performances on their center stage, The Lost Boys retro '80s video arcade, SFX make-up demonstrations, and plenty of themed food and drinks.
BEHIND THE SCREAMS
Enter the weird world of twisted filmmkaer Tim Burton and view authentic props and costumes from his iconic movies Sweeney Todd, The Corpse Bride, Mars Attacks!, and for the first time ever, the original props and models from the Halloween classic, Beetlejuice.
JOIN THE LOSERS' CLUB
Experience the frightful experiences on a premium level and join “The Losers’ Club” for the night to enjoy one-time, front-of-line exclusive access to each maze with dedicated VIP security and entry lanes, a pair of complimentary beverages, one free IT photo-op, and free priority VIP parking.
YOU'LL FLOAT TOO
Pennywise the Clown is back and is looking forward to seeing you float in the Neibolt House Dark Maze. IT knows what exactly scares you and is waiting with more spine-chilling scares and scream-worthy surprises at every turn.
THE JOKER IS YOUR JUDGE
The crazy Clown Prince of Crime has taken over Arkham Asylum and will decide your fate. Escape the Joker and a host of DC Supervillains and find out who is waiting for you as you break out of this twisted institution drak maze.
THE NEXT CHAPTER IN THE CONJURING UNIVERSE
Explore and investigate the most famous paranormal cases while trying to escape the tormented demonic spirits that are lurking in the darkest shadows. Be sure not to disrupt anything on your perilous journey and fall victim to Annabelle's devious games, for everything in this unsettling maze is possessed.
THE EXORCIST FORBIDDEN SCREENING
This is a church service you'll never forget. Say your prayers while unholy activity disrupts this sinister service and brings the poignant horrors of The Exorcist to vivid life, and watch an evil beyond this world right from the pew in this forbidden viewing.
NIGHTMARE ON CAMP CRYSTAL LAKE
Take a tram tour of the Warner Bros. lot and witness filming locations from your favorite horror flicks including Whatever Happened to Baby Jane and House of Wax, with a detour to everyone’s favorite homicidal campground, Camp Crystal Lake. Sleeping bags not required.
"Our creepy carnival is a central hub where guests enter through Joker's mouth and will go into a scare zone based on the classic Warner Bros. film, Freaks," added Soloff. "Creepy characters come after you and push you into the festival where a themed goth-punk bar awaits, with an homage to Fangtasia Bar from HBO's True Blood, and there'll be go-go dancers and a recreation of Audrey from Little Shop of Horrors where Halloween-themed merchandise, and a Crave Inn Cafe as a nod to Wes Craven where you can buy fun food like pizza, burgers, fries, churros, all the food you'd expect from a carnival.
"And there'll be a main stage with DJ Ricky Rock and a drag queen performance, and a Devil's Drop thrillride, and carnival games to play," said Soloff. "The horror genre has grown so much, and in terms of a Halloween product, people are looking for more immersive experiences We want to do what the fans want and it's fun to produce from our side, and we love watching people get scared!"
Warner Bros. Studio Tour's Horror Made Here: A Festival of Frights opens its creaking gates October 5-6, 12-14, 18-21, and 25-28 from 7:00 PM- 1:00 AM, with ticket prices ranging from $59-$86. For more info and to purchase advanced tickets for this premier Halloween event, visit the official site HERE. Happy Haunting!