Update: 'Today' show cancels Universal broadcast
UPDATE: WESH TV, the NBC affiliate in Orlando, is reporting that Today show producers have canceled the planned broadcast from Universal Orlando Resort on Friday.
When the news of the show being in Orlando was first announced Tuesday, it sent speculation flying faster than a Firebolt that muggles will finally be told when the opening day of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter expansion, Diagon Alley. There was no word from NBC or Universal if the decision had anything to do with the theme park expansion's progress.
Universal Orlando and Today are both a part of the NBCUniversal media empire, which is owned by cable giant Comcast. Universal officials so far have only said the expansion is opening “this summer,” but Comcast Corp., the parent company of Universal, said in a conference call this week to discuss first-quarter earnings that it expect a strong performance during the April-through-June quarter because of the later Easter holiday and the debut of Diagon Alley. And sharp-eyed theme park watchers noted that Universal Studios Florida will start staying open later until 10 p.m. beginning June 19.
What Universal has revealed is the parks are about to get the Hogwarts Express that will debut as part of the expansion, letting visitors experience the films by jumping aboard the train that ran between London and Hogsmeade. The train will connect the new land in Universal Studios with The Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Islands of Adventure, giving guests park-to-park admission to enjoy a real journey aboard the iconic train. The park is also adding a new thrill ride, Escape from Gringotts. and lots of shopping and Potter-themed dining experiences in Diagon Alley, the London shopping district for wizards.