Universal Orlando Resort: Super Soap Stars, Potter Going Up, Transformers Wrapping Up

Written by Eric Davis. Posted in Features, Orlando Parkhopper, Universal Orlando


Published on February 26, 2013 at 4:02 am with 14 Comments

It was a busy weekend at the Universal Orlando Resort with Mardi Gras packing in the guests. Plus, Universal took another chunk out of Disney’s business by inviting soap stars from Days of our Lives down for “Super Soap Weekends.”   Over at the N.E.S.T. the walls are coming down at Transformers.  But more walls are going up in the Harry Potter expansion.  All this plus the new Shrek meet and greet, progress at Springfield and the nicest bathrooms around.


On Saturday February 23rd, Universal Orlando hosted their own Super Soap weekend inviting the stars of Days of Our Lives to meet and greet with guests, sign autographs, and answer questions during a LIVE Q&A session held in the Animal Actors Live Theater.

CityWalk was full of anxious guests waiting their turn to meet some of their favorite daytime Television stars.


Part of the walls near the new Transformers attraction have come down, giving us an up-close look at what this amazing attraction will look like.  Universal Orlando also has started hiring for Transformers, which has begun cycling vehicles through the attraction continuously around the clock.   The application process ends March 8th, so Universal is wasting no time and getting the opening team lined up.  On February 26th and 28th Universal Orlando will be casting the roles for the Transformers stilt walkers.  With an opening team being selected, and casting for stilt walkers imminent, an early opening is on track to begin technical rehearsals in May, with an official Grand Opening date still not announced.

The marque for the attraction should be installed here.

The sides of the building are being decorated with all manner of mechanical mayhem.

What the Transformers building looks like from the lagoon


The Shrek and Donkey meet and greet has finally opened to the public, and is once again delighting guests with Donkey’s crazy antics.


The Wizarding World Part II has shown some massive growth this past week.  Large walls have popped up which are not part of Gringotts or Kings Cross, the land is going vertical and it’s really starting to get exciting to follow this project.


Details for Springfield USA continue to delight us as this new addition is fleshed out.


From left to right, The Simpsons Ride, Kwik-E-Mart, Android’s Dungeon, Moe’s, Krusty Burger.

Krusty Burger



Universal Orlando is not content with just having the best theme park rides in the world, they also want to have the best theme park bathrooms.  Recent remodels of bathrooms are themed to the area they are in, with nicer upscale finishing.  The recently remodeled Mel’s Drive-In restrooms now reflect a nostalgic 1950’s theme.

With that we close our visit to the Universal Orlando Resort for this week.

About Eric Davis

By day, Eric is in Marketing and Social Media. But on the weekends, he's a theme park addict. Eric is a frequent contributor to MiceChat's Orlando Parkhopper columns and tends to focus his efforts on what's new and what's news at Universal Studios and SeaWorld.

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  • Trumpet

    Great Update Eric

    The park is so full of life, even in the off season. This is where USO excels, whereas WDW lags behind with mediocre ‘Limited Time Magic’. From what I have seen, USO is going to have a fantastic summer, with 3 new attractions, Springfield USA (with authentic Krusty Burger and Duff Beer) Transformers (I love how the building reflects the attraction, making the guests feel that they in the middle of battle) and looking over the construction walls of Project: London (WWOHP 2.0)! This is better that what WDW is coming up with this year. If an WDW executives are reading this blog, they need to step up their game. Every theme park fanatic will understand that construction makes the blood boil with excitement when there are large scale construction. DCA showed that, as there were more guests when the park was full of construction walls. And from that, the park continues to have more people visiting. USO will have it this year, and for many more years to come. The only construction at WDW is the Seven Dwarfs Mine Coaster, but no Avatar Land. Maybe if they started to get the diggers on the land and get some more cranes in, maybe their attendance will rise.

    Thanks Again Eric, I really look forward to these Tuesday updates. Like Dateline Disneyland every Monday during the DCA overhaul, this column is now my favourite column on Micechat!


    • Eric Davis

      Thank you for your insight trumpet! It is crazy to think of how much work is being done at Universal Orlando vs WDW

      I will be there every week covering these incredible and radical changes!

  • red barchetta

    Surprised they have Fiona in Ogre form for the meet and greet.

    • Eric Davis

      So cruel! lol

    • DobbysCloset

      I loved seeing a woman of normal weight playing a character ! One of the major lessons of the movies — love trumps conventional beauty…

  • fnord

    Ogre form my a.
    I agree with Trumpet. This is currently also my favorite miceage column.

  • jcruise86

    Thanks, Eric! Excellent work!

    I wish that when Iger resigns in 2015, that
    Universal’s Steve Burke would take over as Disney’s CEO
    instead of Disney’s former CFO Thomas Staggs.

    I’d guess that Staggs would be fine in the #2 role
    formerly held so well by Roy Disney, Sr. & Frank Wells.

    • Eric Davis

      I agree that Tom Staggs would make a great #2. However Steve Burke has been doing a terrific job with Universal, and I don’t want to see him leave! I want to see his vision!

  • Darth Goofy

    I just returned from Universal last week and the bathrooms over at WWOHP have nicely themed restrooms with moldy walls (not in a bad way either) similar to what you would find on roofs and walls in the damp cities in the UK. (really authentic) Islands Of Adventures Port of entry was well done with the detail and the great background music for effect. It was interesting to see this cyborg studio emerge that will become the transformers ride. You can see this thing from many views from the park. Can’t wait to go back!!

    • Eric Davis

      I am so glad that you have a great time at Universal Orlando! It is awesome going to the parks with all of this going on, because you realize, that you will need to come back to experience everything that was under construction!

      I am loving all of the little surprises that have popped up over the past months in the parks, and the bathrooms are some of those great surprises.

  • Gregg Condon

    All of these updates at Universal Orlando continue to amaze me. And all we get at DL is a princess meet and greet.

    I really wish USH would get moving on their Harry Potter, sadly due to the neighbors I don’t see the progress going quite as quick.

    The Transformers building looks awesome and way better than the USH version. All of the details they are adding are really awesome.

  • DobbysCloset

    Even if I never make it to this theme park I feel good knowing that the bathrooms will meet my high standards!

  • StevenW

    I’ve seen that Mel’s Drive-In restrooms design at USH before. Is it that unique?

  • triggernel

    I do believe that one of the new buildings in Springfield will be Kentucky Fried Panda.

    Thanks for the update!