Universal Orlando’s Halloween Horror Nights 23 is getting a very exciting new horror maze for its 2013 celebrations. The Florida theme park has teamed with director Drew Goddard to create a maze based on his 2012 horror film “The Cabin in the Woods.”
“We are building the cabin completely. You’re going to walk through a forest to get there. You’re going into the cabin. You’re going to go into the cube cells. We’re literally taking everything we can in the film and giving you a kind of best-of montage of the film with this kind of linking story,” Universal Orlando Entertainment Team member Michael Aiello tells Zap2it. “You’re going to be in the control room when merman attacks.”
A new storyline that parallels the one in “Cabin in the Woods” will be introduced in the Halloween maze. The idea initially presented to Goddard was that guests will take on the role of a newly hired person in the Facility. Videos in the queue and within the maze will explain the mythology of “Cabin in the Woods” and the idea of the film’s sacrifices and gods, and then guests will experience the events of the movie — including some of the sacrifices — in real time from a different perspective.
One of the aspects of that film that fans responded to the most was the many, many horrifying creatures that were included and introduced in the film. Expect to see a large array of them in this maze as well as some other familiar faces, the majority of which will be portrayed by “scare-actors” versus animatronics.
“We’re trying to adapt this film as best as we physically can in the context of what we have. The whole idea of the maze is to have varying creatures in it,” Aiello says. “In the maze, we’ve got many that were in the forefront of a lot of the scenes — the ballerina, the Sugarplum Fairy, the Hell Lord — but also too there are a couple rooms where we’re kind of featuring some of the creatures that were just on the screens in the control room of movie. And then in the finale we’ve got a couple characters that could open up from Halloweens past, our own events, because we were granted amazing permission to be able to include some of our lineage into ‘Cabin’s’ lineage.”
Just don’t expect the final room in the “Cabin in the Wood” maze to be the same as the final scene in the movie. Be warned, some “Cabin in the Woods” spoilers lie ahead.
“The gods were very expensive to try and get to perform for us,” Aiello jokes of the money shot at the end of the film.
He adds, “Our finale for the maze is something that we want guests to be surrounded by. There are so many amazing characters in the movie, we really wanted to end it with trying to surround the guests with as many guests as possible.”
Goddard, Aiello and the rest of the Universal team are currently writing the script for the maze’s story and wouldn’t say whether any of the film’s cast members will be involved in the making of the videos within the “Cabin in the Woods” house. Lionsgate was first approached about making the maze in early 2012, and Aiello says Lionsgate and Goddard have given the Universal team whatever they’ve asked for to make the maze as real as possible, from set layouts to scripts.
“My wish for ‘Cabin’ was always that it would live on outside the film, that people would take that ball and run with it, and I can’t imagine a better fit for what we were trying to do with the movie than to make a maze out of it,” Goddard says.
As for whether Goddard will ever help made a “Cloverfield” maze, he teases, “It’s really hard because that freaking monster is so big.”
Aiello adds, “Actually, we’re going to do the reverse: we’re going to do the maze first and then he’s going to translate the maze into a movie.” “And we’re just going to call that ‘Cloverfield 2,” Goddard jokes.
This “Cabin in the Woods” maze will only be at Universal Orlando, and won’t have a sister maze at Universal Hollywood. Halloween Horror Nights 23 is running select nights from Sept. 20 to Nov. 2. Tickets are now on sale here.