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Suprised no ones posted this yet... Universal Studios fire Rate Topic: -----

#1 User is offline   ike123 

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Posted 02 June 2008 - 05:21 PM

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UNIVERSAL CITY, Calif. (AP) — One of Hollywood's largest movie studios starred in a disastrous sequel Sunday as a fire ripped through a lot at Universal Studios, destroying a set from "Back to the Future," a King Kong exhibit and a streetscape seen frequently in movies and TV shows.

It was the second fire at the historic site in nearly two decades, leveling facades, hollowing out buildings and creating the kind of catastrophe filmmakers relish re-creating. This time around, thousands of videos chronicling Universal's movie and TV shows were destroyed in the blaze.

But Universal officials said that they were thankful no vistors were seriously injured — though several firefighters suffered minor injuries — and that the damaged footage can be replaced.

"We have duplicates of everything," said Ron Meyer, NBC Universal president and chief operating officer. "Nothing is lost forever."

The blaze broke out on a sound stage featuring New York brownstone facades around 4:30 a.m. at the 400-acre property, Los Angeles County Fire Chief Michael Freeman said. The fire was contained to the lot but burned for more than 12 hours before the final flames were extinguished.

The cause of the fire is under investigation. Damage was expected to be in the millions of dollars.

The iconic courthouse square from "Back to the Future" was destroyed, and the famous clock tower that enabled Michael J. Fox's character to travel through time was damaged, fire officials said. Two mock New York and New England streets used both for movie-making and as tourist displays were a total loss, Los Angeles County Fire Inspector Darryl Jacobs said.

An exhibit housing a mechanically animated King Kong that bellows at visitors on a tram also was destroyed.

All three sites were either damaged or destroyed during another fire at Universal Studios in November 1990. That fire caused $25 million in damage and was started by a security guard who was sentenced to four years in prison after pleading guilty to arson.

Concerns for air quality due to the acrid smoke prompted the South Coast Air Quality Management District to send a chemist to take air samples at the scene, said spokesman Sam Atwood. Results were expected Monday morning.

Hundreds of visitors who had waited for hours outside the park gates were turned away after officials decided not to open the area. On a typical weekend day, about 25,000 people visit Universal Studios. NBC Universal said in a statement that the park would reopen Monday morning.

Universal CityWalk, a shopping promenade, was also closed. The MTV Movie Awards, broadcasting live Sunday night from the adjacent Gibson Amphitheater, went on as planned.

Mike Herrick of San Diego watched the fire on television from his hotel Sunday afternoon before deciding to return to Universal Studios for a second day with his wife.

"By gosh, we're going to go and get whatever we can out of it," Herrick said. On Saturday, Herrick had ridden the tram that winds around the studio lot, snapping photos of the King Kong attraction, among other sights.

The fire broke out along New York Street, where firefighting helicopters swept in for drops and cranes dumped water on the flames. A thick column of smoke rose thousands of feet into the air and could be seen for miles.

"It looked like a disaster film," said Los Angeles City Councilman Tom LaBonge.

Several firefighters suffered minor injuries. One firefighter and a Los Angeles County sheriff's deputy were slightly hurt when a pressurized cylinder exploded inside the building housing the videos.

The streetscape that burned recently served as a backdrop in such films as "Bruce Almighty" and television shows including "Monk," "Crossing Jordan" and "House," said NBC Universal spokeswoman Cindy Gardner. A set for the Clint Eastwood-directed movie "Changeling" featuring Angelina Jolie also was destroyed, Meyer said.

At one point the blaze was two city blocks wide, and low water pressure forced firefighters to get reserves from lakes and ponds on the property. "The water pressure situation was a challenge," Freeman said. "This fire moved extremely fast."

County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky said authorities would investigate the water problems to see if they reflect a larger shortfall in the area, which is part of his district.

"There's no question that there was a lack of adequate water pressure at least in the perception of a lot of firefighters," he said. "We're going to find out what the problem was."

Meyer estimated there were 40,000 to 50,000 videos and film reels in a vault that burned but said duplicates were stored in a different location. Firefighters managed to recover hundreds of titles.

The videos included every film that Universal has produced and footage from television series including "Miami Vice" and "I Love Lucy."

Universal Studios, nine miles north of downtown Los Angeles, has thrill rides and a back lot where movies and television shows are filmed, including scenes from "War of the Worlds," "When Harry Met Sally" and "Scrubs."

I was there the day before it happened to. On my Senior Trip. Pretty crazy stuff.

This post has been edited by ike123: 02 June 2008 - 05:21 PM

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#2 User is offline   outlaw-master 

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Posted 02 June 2008 - 05:24 PM

I can't really say that I care, I mean nothing really good is coming out of hollywood now days(although iron man was awesome). Maybe more of hollywood need to start burning down, the more the better. :ninja:

This post has been edited by outlaw-master: 02 June 2008 - 05:24 PM

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#3 User is offline   Flippy the Wonder Bunny 

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Posted 02 June 2008 - 05:28 PM

Hollywood burning is good. But Burkeley burning would be even better.
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#4 User is offline   Evil Fingers 

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Posted 02 June 2008 - 09:41 PM

I betcha the security guard that started that fire was rappin out that Old Skool Hip Hop Tune from Public Enemy....Burn, Hollywood Burn

or

George Clinton's Night Club Classic

"the roof, the roof, the roof is on fire"....
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#5 Guest_VadamarrX2_*

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Posted 02 June 2008 - 09:43 PM

it ux that that happened i like those old movies
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#6 User is offline   ike123 

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Posted 02 June 2008 - 10:19 PM

View PostVadamarrX2, on Jun 2 2008, 09:43 PM, said:

it ux that that happened i like those old movies


Luckily it didn't destroy any of the REALLY old stuff (they have set's still there from John Wayne films, and Dirty Harry, stuff from the hyadays of westerns, that are nearly 100 years old) and King Kong was lookin pretty shabby anyways. I say they should take the oppurtunity to build better stuff.
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#7 User is offline   Evil Fingers 

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Posted 02 June 2008 - 10:27 PM

What do you mean by Building Better Stuff?
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