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Fire at Universal Studios: Like Backdraft, But Real

A fire broke out at Hollywood's Universal Studios around 4:30 a.m. Sunday morning. Nobody was seriously hurt, though the fire destroyed some set pieces and soundstages, including the courthouse square used for Back to the Future. According the AP, "Two mock New York and New England streets used both for movies such as Bruce Almighty, Spider-Man 2 and Transformers and as tourist displays were a total loss," and in addition to the courthouse square, "the famous clock tower that enabled Michael J. Fox's character in Back to the Future to travel through time was damaged." Thousands of videos were also destroyed, though Universal has duplicates of all the lost footage.

Today officials are saying the fire took over 12 hours to extinguish due to low water pressure and because "the sprinkler system on the outdoor sets was nearly useless." The cause of the fire is still unknown.

Many of the people quoted about the fire can't help but quip that the incident was just like what filmmakers crave when making a disaster film, except, you know, real.


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pipette1110 pipette1110 8 years
I am upset. especially for the clock tower! My favourite movies are Transformers & Back To The Future so im' very sad about it...
Phasekitty Phasekitty 8 years
This was so sad. Thank goodness it was on a Sunday, or else those stages and sets would have been full of people.
radarkitty radarkitty 8 years
As soon as I heard about the fire my first thought was the clock tower and how I hoped it wasn't affected. And then I heard it was and it made me very sad. I remember the last time they had a fire there and the original Psycho house burned down. They rebuilt it, but it's just not the same. :(
kcwebgirl kcwebgirl 8 years
this was pretty sad. i'm in mourning over the clock tower. one of my favorite movie scenes of all time!
ilanac13 ilanac13 8 years
it really is a shame to see things like this happen especially at a place that's so iconic. it's good to know that any film that was destroyed wasn't truly lost - at least universal had duplicates. i wonder what they are going to find as the cause of the fires...and if anyone's going to be blamed for the lack of water pressure which hindered to efforts to put out the fire.
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