While Warner Brothers Studios Hollywood has been introducing experimental Halloween events the last few seasons, this year they went full in, expanding into a full-scale Halloween attraction. This was our first year visiting them for Halloween time and while we knew it would be well done, we weren’t really sure what it would compare to. We soon realized that WB Studio Tour’s Horror Made Here: Festival of Frights can’t easily be compared to other studio haunts, and is really is in its own category. The event is intimate (only about three thousand guests per evening), very, very detailed, creative, and clearly professionally planned. It’s small in comparison to HHN or Knotts but has plenty to see and do. The experiences are more interactive and longer than a lot of mazes we’ve been through this season, and we were thrilled to find that guests are sent through in small groups rather than conga lines. The entire event takes place on their backlots so it’s easy to forget you’re in Los Angeles. They’ve created their own horror town!
Horror Made Here starts out with a bang when you enter the grounds through a creepy carnival scare zone that lands you in the center of the action. The event features four walk-through attractions, including IT Knows What Scares You, The Conjuring Universe, and Batman: Arkham Asylum in the main area, and Freddy vs. Jason just a short tram-ride away at “Camp Crystal Lake.” The tram ride lets guests off right at the entrance of Stage 48: Script to Scream for an exhibit of Tim Burton favorites including Beetlejuice and Corpse Bride, as well as a slew of displays and photo opps from other WB classics. There’s also The Exorcist Forbidden Screening which is a “4-D” viewing of horrifying highlights from 1973’s The Exorcist, held in their back-lot church which you may recognize from the opening scenes of Annabelle Creation!
Overall we were very impressed with the quality of their maze experiences. The sets were so good it looked like like they were plucked from their respective movies after filming and saved for this event! The scare actors were exceptional, very interactive and made it feel like they were the real characters from the movies depicted. We especially loved IT Know What Scares you, which is an expansion of the free Neilbolt House walk through WB had in Hollywood prior to the movie’s 2017 release. We made it through this maze twice and were pleasantly surprised to have had very two different, yet equally terrifying experiences. We enjoyed the guest involvement within each environment, such as getting to choose a door or speaking with the characters. And you won’t believe the final scene in The Conjuring Universe, we were scared and in awe at the same time! We’d recommend catching The Exorcist Forbidden Screening and The Conjuring Universe early in the evening. Guests are taken in groups and spaced out for lighting/sound effects in both of these, which causes the lines to take a little longer.
If interactive scares aren’t your thing (or you’ve already hit them all) this event still has ton to see. You can enjoy Stage 48 by skipping the tram or visit the Lost Boys Arcade which is loaded with authentic free-play ’80s arcade games. You can watch the live SFX makeup demonstration, go on a shopping spree at The Little Shop of Horrors, or get your boogie on with the DJ. You can even take a chance on The Devil’s Drop, which is a 90-foot drop ride that adds plenty of screams to the night’s atmosphere. And if you’re looking for a drink, you definitely don’t want to miss Fangtasia, which is designed to look like the vampire bar from True Blood and features tasty themed specialties.
Something else here that we don’t necessarily see at every other haunt – Horror Made Here was super well organized! The event grounds were logically laid out and easy to navigate. Every staff member we encountered was friendly, helpful, and seemed to be genuinely enjoying be a part of it, and we didn’t have to brave visiting gross or dark porta potties. It’s clear that Horror Made Here is making their guests’ experiences a main priority.
Would we recommend this event?
We can’t recommend it enough! Horror Made Here: Festival of Frights is fully immersive, exceptionally detailed, scary, exciting, well organized and fairly priced. If you attend this season we know it will be a night you won’t soon forget!