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March 2, 2000

Batten Down The Hatches Pirates Invade SeaWorld May 2000

San Diego, CA -- Beginning late May, family fun and "in-your-face entertainment" await visitors to Pirates 4-D, an exciting, surprise-filled humorous tale of a hapless pirate crew and its wacky captain.

More than a 3-D movie, Pirates introduces a fourth dimension that uses the latest technology and special effects to tantalize the senses with sprays of water, blasts of air and other wild surprises.

"There's no other theater experience like it in all of San Diego County," said SeaWorld General Manager Bill Davis. "Guests will be blown away by sensational sights, sounds and surprises. It promises to be a mesmerizing, immersive, exciting, real-life adventure."

The film stars Leslie Nielsen and Eric Idle. It begins aboard a pirate ship commanded by the infamous Captain Lucky, played by Nielsen. Best known for his role as Lt. Frank Drebin from the TV series "Police Squad" and "The Naked Gun" movies, Nielsen reprises his usual deadpan style as he portrays the greedy leader of a swarthy band of swashbucklers in search of a pirate's treasure. The 17-minute film quickly moves to a remote Caribbean island, where Captain Lucky has abandoned a crew and kept the pirate booty for himself. Unbeknownst to the Captain, a young cabin boy named Davey has survived the first trip and waits on the island to seek revenge.

Davey, portrayed by Adam Wylie of the TV series "Picket Fences," sets the film rolling as the Captain and his motley crew make their way to the treasure through an island filled with booby-traps and snares. The series of pratfalls, including a bat attack, an assault by angry hornets and a journey through a dark, mysterious cave, are enhanced by 3-D visual effects and surprising fourth dimension sensations. Special effects immerse guests, who share the experience of the characters on screen.

Pirates was written by Eric Idle, a member of the Monty Python comedy troupe. Idle also stars as Pierre, Captain Lucky's loyal first mate, a blundering pirate whose antics delight the entire family. His other film credits include "National Lampoon's European Vacation," "Splitting Heirs," "Casper," and the popular Monty Python films.

SeaWorld San Diego's new "Mission Bay Theater," built especially for Pirates, seats 720 guests and is accessible to guests with disabilities. The new theater provides a high-quality 3-D image projected on a 50-foot-wide by 20-foot-high screen. The 3-D movie was shot on 70 mm film and broadcasts through a 24-hidden speaker surround-sound system. Special effects units are positioned throughout the theater, allowing the audience to experience sprays of water, cannon blasts and hear menacing hornets. The multisensory, multidimensional, multimillion dollar film is the latest addition to the adventure park and replaces the Window to the Sea Theater at the park's northern boundary. From 1968 to 1990 the theater was known as the Sparkletts' Water Fantasy Theater, where the popular "Water Fantasy Show" entertained and delighted guests for years.

Pirates 4-D is a production of Busch Entertainment Corporation (BEC) Creative Entertainment Division. SeaWorld San Diego is the third BEC park to feature this popular movie spectacular opening May 2000. SeaWorld Ohio and Busch Gardens Williamsburg also feature Pirates.

"Pirates guarantees a whole new dimension of family entertainment," said Davis. "Combined with all the other new adventures at SeaWorld, guests will get yet another unique encounter during their visit."

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