Universal was hesitant to revive the event after the late ‘90s run failed to turn a significant profit. Creative director John Murdy was tasked with reinventing Halloween Horror Nights™ to last at low cost. Taking cues and an icon from Orlando’s blockbuster event, 2006 would be the year it finally stuck.
In lieu of big names like Clive Barker or Rob Zombie, The Director oversaw the production design. Every last scare was woven into his unproduced scripts. Every last scream was directed by his unseen hand. Though his physical appearances proved sparse, The Director’s advertised vision was a clever way to make the fourth inaugural Halloween Horror Nights™ seem bigger than ever, despite only two mazes being built for it.
Though variations of the Terror Tram were included in the 1986 and 1992 events, for the first time ever, guests would disembark their trams to survive the backlot sets on foot.
2006 was a landmark year for Halloween Horror Nights™ Hollywood in many ways, including digitally. The event continued online with an interactive contest to find the best guest screamer. Contestants were recorded by The Director’s roving “crew” and uploaded to the Horror Nights website for voting.
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