E.T. Adventure

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E.T. Adventure
USF E.T. Adventure logo.png
Universal Studios Florida
AreaWoody Woodpecker's Kidzone
StatusOperating
Opening dateJune 7, 1990 (1990-06-07)
Universal Studios Hollywood
AreaLower Lot
StatusClosed
Opening dateJune 12, 1991 (1991-06-12)
Closing dateMarch 14, 2003 (2003-03-14)
Replaced byRevenge of the Mummy
Universal Studios Japan
AreaHollywood
StatusClosed
Opening dateMarch 31, 2001 (2001-03-31)
Closing dateMay 10, 2009 (2009-05-10)
Replaced bySpace Fantasy: The Ride
General statistics
Attraction typeSuspended Dark ride
DesignerUniversal Creative
Height5 ft (1.5 m)
Speed5 mph (8.0 km/h)
Vehicle typeBikes
Riders per vehicle12
Rows3
Riders per row4
Duration4:30
Height restriction34 in (86 cm)
Pre-Show HostSteven Spielberg
Ride HostE.T.
Original MusicJohn Williams

E.T. Adventure is a dark ride featured at Universal Studios Florida, and formerly, Universal Studios Hollywood and Universal Studios Japan theme parks. The ride is based on the movie E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial. E.T. Adventure's animatronics were manufactured by Sally Corporation.[1]

History[edit]

E.T. Adventure originally opened at Universal Studios Florida in 1990. One year later, the attraction opened in Universal Studios Hollywood. In 2001, the third installation of this attraction was opened in Universal Studios Japan. On March 14, 2003, the Hollywood version was closed and later replaced by Revenge of the Mummy: The Ride. More recently, on May 10, 2009, the Japanese version was closed and later replaced by Space Fantasy: The Ride. The Orlando version was also slated to be removed as well, but Steven Spielberg, who directed the E.T. film and already angered by the removal of the Hollywood and Japanese versions, threatened to end cooperation with Universal Studios if it made attempts to do so. As a result, the Orlando version is still operating as of 2018, and received a refurbishment in 2017. E.T. Adventure was also expected to open at Universal Studios South Korea.

The attraction at Universal Studios Florida originally featured a different pre-show which ran from 1990-2002. During this pre-show, Steven Spielberg is in a movie theater watching E.T, munching on popcorn and informs the guests that they have volunteered to be actors in a sequel to the film. The original pre-show was discontinued, because Spielberg wanted to change it for the 20th Anniversary.

During the ride's early years, guests could either ride on bicycles or on spaceships. The spaceships were removed in 2004-2005, during a refurbishment.

In 2012, the ride at Universal Studios Florida received new track switches by Dynamic Structures.[2][3]

Summary[edit]

The ride at Universal Studios Florida has guests begin by entering a sound stage. Some elements of this description may not be accurate for the Hollywood and Japan installations.

Exterior queue[edit]

The exterior queue is themed to a sound stage where E.T. is being filmed. TV monitors above guests' heads display the filmmakers discussing their experiences on creating the film as well as E.T. trivia. There are also E.T. posters from the film's 30th Anniversary re-release on display near the end of the queue, in English and various other languages. Guests are then ushered into the pre-show room.

Update[edit]

Oddly, the poster has been updated with a 30th Anniversary label, but still shows the 2002 re-release date.

Pre-show[edit]

Before going into the interior queue, Steven Spielberg appears on TV screens above the guests and tells them that E.T.'s teacher Botanicus needs E.T. to come back to his home world, "The Green Planet", because the planet is dying. Only E.T.'s magical healing touch can save the planet and its inhabitants, so it is up to the guests to bring him home. He also tells the guests that they'll make their journey on bikes and that they'll need an "Interplanetary Passport" to get there. The guests then enter a second room where they give their name to one of "Spielberg's assistants" which is programmed into a card that is used later in the ride.

Prior to the 20th anniversary, the pre-show had an additional wraparound, stating that the ride is the set for a sequel, and the guests are the actors playing the parts. The "Interplanetary Passports" were originally called "Passes", and the "assistants" were "stagehands".

Interior queue[edit]

The interior queue is a forest setting where it is established that the police are looking for E.T. and the guests. In the interior queue, Botanicus is seen beaming down from his ship every few minutes, pleading for E.T.'s return. On the way, the guests pass by a Speak & Spell seen in the movie, while the letters H-E-L-P E-T come onto the screen of it while its signature loud clacking is heard, then the letters erase and ad lib. A hare from the film pops up every few seconds. The guests then board the ride vehicles. There is also a customized "pine fresh" scent created by scent marketing company, ScentAir.[4]

Ride[edit]

Each individual seat is a bicycle, whose handles come down as the lap bars. The bike in the middle of the front row contains E.T. However, in the attraction's early years, guests also had the option of riding in a spaceship modeled after the one that E.T. came to Earth on in the movie. But these ride vehicles were removed as guests preferred to ride the bikes, given how iconic they were in the famous flying scene in the movie.


The vehicles travel past NASA and police officials who give chase and try to arrest the riders and capture E.T. As they are about to be caught, a police car appears out of nowhere and just as they are about to hit it, the bicycles begin to fly over the city and then into outer space. From on their bikes, the guests can see a miniature city below, including real moving cars and even a football stadium and two baseball fields.

The bikes are then transported to a kind of portal area with flashing lights which, when finally turned around, arrives at the Green Planet. The guests then encounter Botanicus, who urges the visitors to save E.T.'s friends.

E.T.'s healing touch travels through the Green Planet, reviving his friends and beginning a celebration with numerous baby E.T.s frolicking and playing. This lasts for about 3 minutes and is a huge contrast to the beginning; the beginning is dark and scary while this part of the ride is light and colorful, with spurting water and singing. At the end, the guests pass an animatronic E.T. who thanks them all by the names that they gave to the travel agents/Spielberg's Assistants. Then, in a flash of light, guests are sent back to Earth and into the unload area. As guests leave the ride, they can sometimes hear E.T.'s voice reminding them, "I'll be right here." [5]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Sally Corporation: ET Adventure Custom Dark Ride". Sally Corp. Archived from the original on 2010-11-15.
  2. ^ "Portfolio". Dynamic Attractions. Archived from the original on 2015-02-25. Retrieved 2015-02-25.
  3. ^ Gonzalez, Carolinda (2012). "Notice of Commencement" (PDF). Orange County Comptroller. Retrieved 28 October 2013.
  4. ^ [1], Manufactured Smells as a Marketing Tool
  5. ^ "E.T. Adventure Ride at Universal Studios Florida KidZone". theotherorlando.com. Retrieved 2006-11-19.

External links[edit]