Are you ready to face down King Kong? After years of absence, the lord of the giant monkeys is headed back to Universal Studios Orlando -- Islands of Adventure in the summer of 2016, with a brand new experience called "Skull Island: Reign of Kong."
Based on the island Kong calls home, and partially masterminded by Peter Jackson (director of 2005's "King Kong"), "Reign of Kong" will take park-goers, according to an official statement, "through an ancient temple inhabited by hostile natives, a perilous jungle ruled by prehistoric creatures, a foreboding underworld of caves concealing unspeakable terrors –- and face-to-face with the colossal Kong himself."
But beyond that, it's also a throwback to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Universal Orlando resort, as MTV News found out when we hopped on the phone with Mike West, executive producer with Universal Creative.
"What greater addition could we make than to bring one of the iconic characters from Universal’s rich history book and film and theme parks to Universal’s Islands of Adventure?" West posited.
And though the creatives in charge did briefly consider following the story of Kong as he famously travels to New York City, it was the "dramatically themed environment of Skull Island" that was truly appealing. Instead of following the story everyone knows, "Reign of Kong" will place guests in an environment where Kong is "in control."
It's surprising, given Universal has embraced more recent franchises like "Transformers" and "Harry Potter," or on Halloween "The Walking Dead," that they would pull on a story that's been around since 1933. But West noted that Kong is a "pop culture icon... This is our way of introducing him to a whole new generation, and looking forward to the next chapter in his story."
Slightly confusing matters, another next chapter in Kong's story will hit movie theaters one year later with "Skull Island," in 2017. West stressed that this is an unrelated story of Kong -- and that it also wasn't a retelling of Jackson's 2005 movie, despite the director's creative input.
In fact, there's only one story Universal will be falling back on, and it's the tried-and-true, "you're on a tour of a remote location, when suddenly everything goes wrong," trope the park (and others) have used for rides like this since the dawn of time. Or at least the past 25 years. Still, West emphasized that there'll be a twist on that traditional dynamic, because, "you are going on an expedition of Skull Island and the intent is to discover the creatures of unknown origin."
The attraction will be set up between the "Jurassic Park" and "Toon Lagoon" areas in Islands of Adventure, sitting neatly between the two in a plot of land where there were actually no structures before. So worry not, fans: everything you love about the park will remain intact.
"We felt, Kong being Kong," West said, "that he was a big enough character both historically and physically that we could create this own, unique area for him -- and that’s really what Skull Island is going to become."
So what will fans encounter when the attraction does open in 2016? West was mum on the technological wonders that might await you, other than to note it's "probably going to be the largest ride vehicle we’ve ever created, and one of if not the longest rides we’ve ever had."
But in terms of the experience itself? You'll start off on foot going through dense jungle and temple ruins, before you encounter hostile natives. After passing cryptic warnings of fantastic beasts (and where to find them), you board an expedition truck, and enter the 72-foot-high great wall.
Entering a dark, mysterious cavern... And that's where things go awry. Or if not awry, at least things start to get a little insane as "you encounter these giant prehistoric critters, and creatures of every imaginable shape and size and color -- and you even come face-to-face with a big, colossal Kong himself."
Someone call my travel agent, because I'm booking a trip to Skull Island right now.