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Spider-Man Gets A Fresh Spin

ORLANDO (CBSMiami/AP) – Spider-Man makes a comeback and this time, he's bigger, better than ever and ready to save the day.

Universal Studio's Islands of Adventure 3-D ride "The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man" reopened Thursday after undergoing a major high def makeover.

The ride, which combines motion vehicles, a towering screen and special effects, was reanimated in digital high-definition 3-D and got updated sets, sound system, lighting and music. Universal says the clearer, brighter animation allowed the addition of loads of new details and high-tech gimmicks to the ride, in which the wise-cracking web-slinger battles villains Doctor Octopus, Scream, Electro, Hydro-Man and the Hobgoblin.

"We saw an opportunity to make it ready for a whole new generation of fans, and this was a perfect time to do so," said Mark Woodbury, president for Universal Creative, the park's design and development group. "The technology was available to us, (and) we saw the opportunity to create something really unique — more immersive, more detailed, more visual."

It's four minutes of chaotic hurtling around a much more realistic animated version of New York City than before, with all sorts of stuff flying at the rider's car and the villains getting close enough to make you flinch repeatedly. The digital reanimation adds stunning depth and clarity, the quality of which is a cut above the 3-D seen in the theaters these days.

Interestingly enough, Universal rival Disney bought the Marvel empire in 2009 for more than $4 billion, but a licensing agreement keeps the Spider-Man ride firmly in Universal's clutches at the Florida theme park.

Universal opens another 3-D ride during summer 2012 based on the animated "Despicable Me" movie featuring similar 3-D technology. It will be on Universal Studios, which requires a separate admission.

(TM and © Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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