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World War II Museum Weathers the Storm: Hettema Group’s Signature Attraction Still on Track.


The $300 million National World War II museum expansion–which broke ground in early June 2008– went on a temporary hiatus while New Orleans was evacuated and Gustav skirted around the city. By the weekend of September 6-7, 2008, according to museum President and CEO, Gordon H. “Nick” Mueller, construction crews were back on site, making up for lost time as they target the June 2009 opening of The Victory Theater wing which will be home to the “Beyond All Boundaries” immersive experience.

Through an array of multi-sensory special effects, rare archival footage, state of the art graphics, plus an advanced format 4-D technology, a 180 degree screen, surround-sound and atmospheric effects, “Beyond All Boundaries” will take an immersive journey that spans the global scope of World War II. Destined for the 200+ seat Victory Theater “Beyond All Boundaries” – the cinematic experience designed exclusively for the National World War II Museum by The Hettema Group’s president and creative executive Phil Hettema and Executive Producer Tom Hanks– is currently in production at The
Hettema Group’s Pasadena, California, headquarters. Project Manager Matt Sweeney says “ while the Museum staff evacuated, we, here at The Hettema Group, were busy incorporating notes from a recent working session with Tom Hanks into the final script and continuing with post-production work on the live action portions of the film.”

The National World War II Museum is in the midst of a $300 million expansion across the street from the current Museum facility. The Victory Theater (hosting “Beyond All Boundaries”) and Stage Door Canteen will be the first of six new pavilions to open between Summer 2009 and 2014.

About The Hettema Group
The Hettema Group is the premier creator of uniquely creative design for the world of experiential entertainment. The Hettema Group specializes in uniquely creative design in the world of experiential entertainment for museums, visitor centers, theme parks, and resort developments. THG specializes in strong conceptual thinking –breakthrough, out-of-the box solutions –combined with top quality design for

• Destination Resorts & Parks
• Retail, Dining & Entertainment Lifestyle Destinations
• Museum and Exhibit Design
• Shows, Entertainment, & Attractions.

Highly experienced in world-class experiential projects (from concept through production), THG provides innovative and original solutions that bring a fresh approach to all of its design work. Under the guidance of Phil Hettema, who has been a leader in this industry for over 30 years, THG’s team consists of experienced designers, illustrators, master planners, architects, engineers, project managers, and producers. The Hettema Group provides full design services including program development, project analysis and feasibility, concept development, detailed design, and on-site design supervision.

Current and recent THG clients include the Royal Hashemite Court of Jordan, Harrah’s Casinos, the National World War II Museum ( New Orleans, Louisiana), Universal Studios (Hollywood and Orlando), Paramount Studios, the Russian Jewish Museum (Moscow, Russia), Gallagher and Associates,
(Bethesda, Maryland), the Museum of Science and Industry (Chicago, Illinois), ResortsWorld (Sentosa, Singapore), Samsung Corporation (Korea) MGM Location Based Entertainment, Busch Entertainment Corporation, and Dreamworks SKG.

About The National World War II Museum
The National World War II Museum was founded by noted historian Stephen E. Ambrose, Ph.D. and is led today by President and CEO, Gordon H. “Nick” Mueller, Ph.D. It opened to worldwide acclaim as The National D-Day Museum on June 6, 2000 and quickly became one of the most respected and popular cultural attractions in the region. In 2003, the United States Congress honored the Museum by naming it America’s official museum of the Second World War. The institution subsequently changed its name to reflect this national designation. Already a destination attraction, the expanded Museum campus is projected to draw more than 680, 000 visitors annually.

For further information, contact:
Pat MacKay
Director/Special Projects

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