UNIVERSAL CITY, Calif., April 9 (UPI) -- Film stars Warwick Davis, Tom Felton, Evanna Lynch, and James and Oliver Phelps helped open a Harry Potter-themed district of Universal Studios Hollywood this week.
Thousands of fans -- dressed in their favorite Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry colors -- also attended the event at the West Coast location of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.
"I am delighted to see the Wizarding World of Harry Potter brought to life in a way that is so close to what I imagined when writing the books. I'm thrilled that Harry Potter fans can now experience the wonderful immersive experience created at Universal Studios Hollywood," J.K. Rowling, author of the fantasy books on which the movies were based, said in a statement Thursday.
"Today is a very exciting and historically significant day for us," added Larry Kurzweil, president of Universal Studios Hollywood. "This incredible event to celebrate the opening of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter marks the pinnacle of years of hard work and the beginning of a new generation of Universal Studios Hollywood. With over 75 percent completely reimagined, Universal Studios Hollywood is an entirely new theme park destination and we look forward to sharing everything that the entertainment capital of L.A. has to offer with visitors from around the world."
The theme-park land is meant to be "faithful to the visual landscape of the fiction and films, including Hogwarts castle which serves as its iconic focal point," a press release said.
The new section includes the rides Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey and Flight of the Hippogriff, as well as the eateries Three Broomsticks and Hog's Head pub and the shops Honeydukes, Ollivanders, Owl Post, Zonko's Joke Shop, Wiseacre's Wizarding Equipment, Dervish and Banges, Gladrags Wizardwear and Filch's Emporium of Confiscated Goods.