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May 23, 2002

LEGO Racers Toy Line Comes To Life In 4-D Movie

Carlsbad, CA -- Just in time for summer, LEGOLAND® California debuted it new attraction for 2002. The LEGO RACERS 4-D movie is a multi-million dollar, state-of-the-art attraction that debuted at all four worldwide LEGOLAND properties this month. The Carlsbad theme park officially opened LEGO RACERS 4-D Thursday, May 23rd while simultaneously opening for daily summer operation.

In the new multi-dimensional movie experience, a brash, young new hero roars into town and onto the world's largest 3-D digital theater screen in the LEGO Show Place at LEGOLAND California. Animated racecar driver Max Axel brings with him a whole new dimension of fun in a total sensory movie experience. Based on the popular LEGO Racers toy line, the 12-minute feature pulls guests wearing 3-D glasses into the action as the adventure unfolds in front of them on the 36-foot screen, and literally fills the 400-seat theater. An elaborate facade has transformed the Show Place stage into a race day extravaganza, and colored lights race around white panels stretched throughout the theater.

Through the magic of imagination and animation, during the movie the racetrack "terraforms" into challenging terrains, ranging from mountains to ice caves to a sprawling city. As the daredevil young hero and his sinister opponent roar through the changing landscape, the audience experiences the thrills and chills of the race right along with them. Guests will dodge flying tires, feel the icy tingle of a flurry of snowflakes and see tire smoke waft up from the screen and out into the audience as the race cars tear around the ever-changing track.

Each time Max and his pit crew find themselves in a tough spot, teamwork, creativity and imagination save the day, and reinforce the LEGO theme of experimentation, rebuilding and empowerment.

"The LEGO brand is about stimulating the imagination," said Martin Zurauskas, executive producer with the LEGO company. "The newly revamped LEGO Show Place Theater will combine 3-D digital imaging with special effects like wind and water to create a guest experience that goes beyond the imagination."

Because the innovative film will be shown at all four LEGOLAND parks in four different countries, instead of dialogue, dramatic music tells the story. British-born composer/producer Eddie Jobson created the score. A professional musician since the age of 17, he has composed more than 100 original advertising scores, winning most major advertising music awards. He starred in, and co-produced, the first MTV video with computer-generated images. Jobson also wrote music for more than 100 TV drama episodes, including Robert DeNiro's "Tribecca" and four seasons of Don Johnson's "Nash Bridges."

Adam Bezark of The Bezark Company, the award-winning writer and director who created world-class attractions like Terminator 3D for Universal Studios and FANTASMIC! for Disney, wrote and co-directed the LEGO Racers 4-D feature with Allen Yamashita of SimEx Digital Studios. SimEx produced the film in conjunction with Edwards Technologies, Inc., who designed and installed a high-definition digital projection system and custom audio system in the Show Place theater at LEGOLAND. All three innovative companies are based in Southern California.

Bezark said ideas for the script really started flowing after he received prototype LEGO Racers cars from the LEGO product group. "My 10-year-old son John was pretty much the co-writer of the script," Bezark said. The message they deliver is that there's more then just running a race and winning it. Real winners are totally hip and innovative, they rely on teamwork and they never give up. It's how you win at racing, and at life, Bezark said.

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