Universal Fire

AP Photo/ Matt Sayles

A horrific fire tore through Universal Studios in the predawn hours this morning. Despite the extensive damage, the famed theme park will remain open today and tonight's MTV Movie Awards will go on as planned in Universal’s Gibson Amphitheatre.

Breaking out just before dawn on a backlot soundstage, the blaze destroyed a building housing the King Kong exhibit, encroached on the "New York" outdoor set and threatened the studio's television video vault. Despite initial rumors, a rep for ABC's Desperate Housewives tells E! News that there is no damage to the Wisteria Lane set, which is housed on the property.

Four firefighters were reported injured; their conditions were not immediately available.

According to county fire officials, filming had been going on at the time the fire started around 4:45 a.m.

About 200 city and county firefighters joined studio firefighters to tackle the spectacular blaze, featuring 100-foot flames and propane tank explosions. Helicopters dropped water onto the burning structures.

Eliot Sekuler of Universal Studios said only the "lower" backlot was damaged, not the hilltop theme park. MTV also quickly announced that it's show "will go on as planned."

The areas we are utilizing for our production were unaffected," an MTV rep says. "We're working closely with authorities to make sure everything operates smoothly."

The ceremony—hosted by Mike Myers—will broadcast live at 5 p.m. PT. Celebrities are expected to hit the red carpet starting at about 3 p.m.

Among those expected at the Movie Awards are Sarah Jessica Parker, Adam Sandler, Lindsay Lohan, Liv Tyler, Anne Hathaway, Robert Downey Jr., Mark Wahlberg, Jennifer Hudson, James Franco, Paris Hilton, Sean “P. Diddy” Combs, Nikki Blonsky, Coldplay and the Pussycat Dolls.


(Originally published June 1, 2008 at 6:55 a.m. PT.)

  • Share
  • Tweet
  • Share

We and our partners use cookies on this site to improve our service, perform analytics, personalize advertising, measure advertising performance, and remember website preferences. By using the site, you consent to these cookies. For more information on cookies including how to manage your consent visit our Cookie Policy.