Comcast Corp.’s Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure reopened in Florida last week, but the public’s willingness to ride Doctor Doom’s Fearfall is still eclipsed by concerns about the coronavirus.
Mobile-phone signals emanating from the parks suggest crowds were about a fifth of what was seen at the same time last year, according to SafeGraph data.
The data also hint that crowds were slightly larger on June 3 and 4 — during the so-called soft opening for annual passholders — than they were on June 5, when the parks reopened to the general public. However, small fluctuations are sometimes explained by variations in the number of mobile devices captured in the sample.
One of Universal’s key theme-park draws, the Harry Potter universe, is contending with controversy this week after author J.K. Rowling made comments seen as denigrating transgender people. Several stars of the Harry Potter film franchise criticized Rowling after she took issue with the phrase “people who menstruate.”