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Great America getting new 'Dark Knight' coaster next year
By Lee Filas | Daily Herald Staff
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Published: 9/27/2007 11:50 AM

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A new roller coaster is coming to Six Flags Great America after a three-year wait.

The Gurnee theme park announced today "The Dark Knight Coaster," will open to much fanfare in 2008.

The coaster will be built indoors, said Great America spokeswoman Brooke Gabbert, and will be based on the upcoming Warner Bros. "Batman"-themed movie, "The Dark Knight."

The coaster is expected to cost about $7.5 million.

Officials said the coaster will transform guests into citizens of the fictitious Gotham City. Those people will be caught in the middle of a city under siege being torn apart by the villain, The Joker.

On the coaster, guests will venture through demented hallways of twists, turns and hallucinatory images while being tormented by The Joker.

Then, after stepping on a distressed, vandalized train platform, they can only guess at what awaits them as they speed through hairpin turns, climb unseen hills, plunge into pitch darkness and dip into unforeseen danger.

"Today's announcement represents Six Flags Great America's continued focus on delivering a well-rounded and balanced entertainment package," Hank Salemi, Six Flags Great America's Park President, said in a release. "The Dark Knight Coaster offers a unique experience that will appeal to families and teens alike."

The coaster will use storytelling, physical movement, video, sound and special effects to bring guests a one-of-a-kind experience, officials said.

It will be located in the Orleans Place section of Six Flags Great America. The opening will be timed to coincide with the opening of "The Dark Knight" movie, officials said.

"Superman: Ultimate Flight," opened to big crowds in 2003 and was the last big coaster introduced at Great America. Officials said the much smaller Ragin' Cajun coaster opened with the Mardi Gras-themed area in 2004.