Disney’s Haunted Mansion: Trailer, Release Date, Cast & Everything We Know About Them Movie Based On A Theme Park

The new Disney’s Haunted Mansion movie will be released on July 28. Think of it as a new version; Disney made a first attempt at a Haunted Mansion franchise in 2003, but it was a critical and commercial failure. Has the company learned the lesson from this previous misstep?

Disney has two distinct approaches to its big-budget blockbuster movies. The first is to take classic animated movies and turn them into live-action spectacles (or, in the case of The Lion King, a photorealistic animated show). The quality of these movies is very inconsistent and largely depends on whether the source material had room for improvement. That’s why the adaptation of The Jungle Book was fantastic. And that’s also why the adaptation of The Lion King was so bad.

The second approach is even less reliable than the first; it’s taking rides or experiences at Disney theme parks and expanding them into feature films. The quality of these movies is also inconsistent; for every Oscar-nominated blockbuster like Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, we also have a movie like The Country Bears.

Here’s everything we know so far about Disney’s Haunted Mansion (2023).

When is the release date?

Haunted Mansion will be released in theaters on July 28, 2023. The release date has changed twice before. Disney first announced a debut on March 10 and then on August 11, before finally settling on July 28.

Who’s in it?

The main character is Gabbie, played by Rosario Dawson. She is the mother of Travis (Chase Dillon), and the two move into the mansion of the same name, only to discover that she is haunted.

Gabbie finds a team of “experts” to exorcise the mansion; she contacts a priest (Owen Wilson), who then recruits a paranormal tour guide (LaKeith Stanfield), a psychic (Tiffany Haddish), and a historian (Danny DeVito).

The ghosts include Madame Leota (Jamie Lee Curtis) and Hatbox Ghost (Jared Leto). Other notable actors include Dan Levy, Hasan Minhaj, and Winona Ryder. According to Disney, the Haunted Mansion has a elaborate backstory and mythology at the level of the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise.

Who is the director?

The director is Justin Simien, the man behind the Sundance film Dear White People and the subsequent TV series on Netflix. Simien is also developing a Star Wars series about Lando Calrissian, which has yet to receive a release date.

The writer is Katie Dippold, who has written comedy for Mad TV and Parks and Recreation. She and Paul Feig co-wrote the script for the female remake of Ghostbusters in 2016.

Is there a trailer for the movie?

There is! You get a pretty good idea of ​​the tone of the movie, definitely scarier and more disturbing than the Eddie Murphy movie, but also tongue-in-cheek. Owen Wilson, who makes a good living playing different versions of himself, seems like a perfect cast; his laid-back, blasé demeanor is a perfect juxtaposition. Check out below.

A theme park classic

Here’s a little history lesson. The Haunted Mansion opened at Disneyland in 1969, and was one of the last attractions Walt Disney had direct creative control over before his death in 1966. It went through many iterations, first as an exhibit and museum of the weird. . However, when it debuted, it was as a ride attraction where guests rode in the clam-shaped “Doom Buggies” we know today.

Some Imagineers wanted it to be scary. Other Imagineers wanted it to be fun. And because of his inability to commit, Haunted Mansion ended up being a bit of both. There’s a creepy corridor of knocking doors and screaming voices in one part of the journey, and a huge party in the graveyard in another. There’s the creepy and iconic “stretching room,” in which the doorless room you’re in seems to stretch upwards, ending with the reveal of a corpse hanging from the ceiling, undermined by a game-loving ghost host. of words that narrated the attraction. The stretch room is actually a cleverly designed elevator that takes you down to the actual ride.

Today, the mansion is considered a classic: a key part of the theme park’s history and an offbeat display of American ingenuity. It is packed with practical effects and optical illusions, many of which date back to the 19th century.

Didn’t we do this already?

Disney attempted a Haunted Mansion movie in 2003, which put Eddie Murphy in the lead as a real estate agent, who moves his family into the mansion and becomes entangled in a ghost story of lost love. The film was envisioned as a family horror comedy, but it flopped at the box office. The upcoming movie will be Disney’s second attempt at a Haunted Mansion adaptation, and it’s a reboot, with no connection to the first movie.

Theme Park Ride Connections

Based on the images released so far, there are some clear connections to the original ride. The movie is set in New Orleans; the original ride is in Disneyland’s New Orleans Square. There are visual callbacks to the hall of changing portraits and the stretch room of the attraction. There is a ghostly organist, who originated from the attraction’s ballroom scene. And there’s a killer-looking girlfriend that’s likely a reference to the girlfriend of attraction: a “black widow” named Constance Hatchaway.

Curtis’s character, Madame Leota, is the woman in the crystal ball in the séance room of the attraction. And Leto’s character, Hatbox Ghost, was originally on the ride for a few months and then disappeared for decades due to technical issues. The Imagineers restored it to the attraction in 2015.


The new Haunted Mansion is rated PG-13. The 2003 version was rated PG.

development hell

For years, there was a different Haunted Mansion movie in development. Guillermo del Toro, director of Pan’s Labyrinth, The Shape of Water, and Pacific Rim, worked on a script for a Haunted Mansion movie centering on the Hatbox Ghost. The movie would have been terrifying: Anyone who’s seen the pale man in Pan’s Labyrinth knows that del Toro specializes in conjuring up childhood nightmares. But the project never got off the ground, even after Ryan Gosling was rumored to star. And in 2019, del Toro admitted that the project was probably dead. This new movie, made without del Toro’s creative input, probably seals the deal.

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