The Walt Disney Company has made a habit of turning its own rides and shows into movies. The most famous and profitable of these is without a doubt the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, which spawned a new pop culture hero in the form of Jack Sparrow over the course of its five films.

From then on, Disney has been eager to adapt its theme park shows for the big screen; films like The Country Bears (2002), Tomorrowland (2015), and Jungle Cruise (2021) are just a few examples. Bert and Bertie, who directed the upcoming picture Hawkeye (2021), have plans to adapt Big Thunder Mountain Railroad into a feature. The Haunted Mansion is the only ride at Walt Disney World Resort that seems like it would be easy to modify.

Disney tried to cash in on the popularity of the attraction over two decades ago with the Eddie Murphy-starring film The Haunted Mansion, which featured the park’s iconic images and surprisingly extensive lore.

You may expect a comic take on the voyage from a comedian like Murphy, who plays the main character. Now, it’s true that the ride has always had a pretty on-the-nose sense of humor, but the film adaptation missed the scary charm of the ride and relied too heavily on the gags, and classic characters like the Hat Box Ghost and the Black Widow Bride weren’t even included.

Dear White People (2014) director and former Disneyland employee Justin Simien plan to develop his own cinematic adaptation of the popular attraction, and he has enlisted a slew of notable filmmakers and an all-star cast to do so.

Their presentation at the D23 Expo in 2022 hinted at a highly exciting adventure-horror mashup. Read on to find out everything we know about the information revealed behind closed doors at D23, as well as everything else we have learned.

What Is the Release Date for Haunted Mansion?

the Release Date for Haunted Mansion

On July 28, 2023, your sympathetic vibrations will reach the spirits of the Haunted Mansion. The film’s initial release date of March 10, 2023, was pushed back to August 11, 2023, and then brought forward to the present. Hopefully, that’s the last time the release date of the highly anticipated movie will be shifted.

Check Out the Haunted Mansion Teaser!

On March 2nd, a creepy teaser trailer for Haunted Mansion was released, giving the world their first peek at the renowned attraction. The opening scene features Rosario Dawson’s Gabbie and Chase W. Dillon’s Travis moving into the Haunted Mansion, the setting of the film.

Soon after moving in, they begin to experience strange occurrences and decide to seek help from a priest with lofty aspirations (Owen Wilson), a down-on-his-luck tour guide (LaKeith Stanfield), and a sage medium (Tiffany Haddish) in order to solve the mystery of the haunted house. The Black Widow Bride and the Hat Box Ghost (both played by Jared Leto) are two more recognized specters from the ride that make an appearance in the trailer.

In addition to the teaser trailer, we got a longer look at the film when Justin Simien presented an extended trailer for the new Haunted Mansion at the Disney & Pixar Studio Showcase at D23.

The footage was shown only during the panel and has not yet been made available online, so those who were unable to attend the showcase missed out. You can read an in-depth account of the footage revelation written by Collider’s Therese Lacson, who was present, by clicking here.

Briefly, the trailer introduces us to Ben, Kent, Gabbie, and Harriet as they explore the mysterious mansion in search of the room in which Madame Leotta, the sorceress head trapped inside a crystal ball, is said to reside. The rest of the film includes even more outlandish individuals, such as a college professor (Danny DeVito), and features more eerie, ghost-like visuals.

We get a better idea of what to expect from Haunted Mansion in the film’s first extended trailer. After realizing the gravity of their predicament, our heroes resolve to take up arms against the ghosts that have been terrorizing their mansion. It gives a good indication of the film’s mood because it shows how he balanced the film’s frightening aspects with humor.

What Is the Plot of Haunted Mansion?

the Plot of Haunted Mansion

Although there are few specifics about the plot and the trailer didn’t do much to clarify it, an official synopsis provided some additional insight:

We already know that Rosario Dawson (Ahsoka) will play Gabbie, that LaKeith Stanfield (Sorry to Bother You) will play the tour guide, that Owen Wilson (Loki) will play the priest, that Tiffany Haddish will play Harriet and that Danny DeVito will play the unnamed professor will play the historian.

We do know that the Hatbox Ghost will probably make an appearance among the spirits that are scheduled to visit. Hatbox Ghost, a notorious element of the attraction that was only recently added back to the ride, was strongly hinted at during the event to be played by Jared Leto (Morbius).

We also know that the Bride, a character with a fascinating background, will appear in the movie. The majority of the Haunted Mansion’s “happy haunts” are, well, happy. With the exception of the Bride, they are generally neither evil nor nasty, though they may occasionally give folks a good scare.

It is strongly implied that the woman, who used to go by Constance Hathaway, murdered her husband (or spouses) and is now stalking the estate in search of her next prey. Both of these notorious ghosts are great candidates for the main antagonist.

Who Is Making Haunted Mansion?

Haunted Mansion release date

First, the legendary director of horror and practical effects won an Oscar for The Shape of Water (2017). Justin Simien is a good successor, but like many of Del Toro’s projects, this one simply wasn’t meant to be for the accomplished writer/director.

Simien has established himself as one of the most promising new voices in storytelling today after working on both the critically acclaimed Dear White People Netflix series and the wildly successful Dear White People movie from 2014. Simien is also expected to have a lengthy relationship with Disney given his involvement in the next Lando series.

Del Toro is still given credit for creating the screenplay for the movie even though he is no longer in charge of directing it. D. V. DeVincentis (High Fidelity) and Katie Dippold (The Heat) are both listed as co-writers.

This is wonderful news for fans of Del Toro’s filmmaking style because it probably means that many of his concepts will be incorporated into the finished product. In addition, Del Toro will participate as an executive producer.

Kris Bowers, King Richard’s composer, Jeffery Waldron, Little Fires Everywhere’s cinematographer, Phillip J. Bartell, Bad Hair’s editor, Darren Gilford, TRON: Legacy’s production designer, and Jeffery Kurland, Collateral’s costume designer, make up the remainder of the ghostly cast.

Who’s Starring in Haunted Mansion?

Most of the big starring actors who will feature, including LaKeith Stanfield, Owen Wilson, Rosario Dawson, Tiffany Haddish, and Jared Leto, have previously been mentioned. One of the numerous fresh casting announcements made at D23 was Leto, who once more is most likely playing the Hat Box Ghost.

The remaining cast members are Winona Ryder (Beetlejuice), Dan Levy (Schitt’s Creek), Hasan Minhaj (The Daily Show), and Jamie Lee Curtis (Halloween Ends), who made a dramatic arrival at the Studio Showcase in her very own “Doom Buggy”.

Winona Ryder might very well be portraying the Bride given that Curtis will reportedly play Madame Leotta, but we’ll just have to wait and see when the gloomy, grin-sporting ghosts mingle next year.

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Conclusion

Haunted Mansion is an upcoming movie based on the popular attraction at the Walt Disney World Resort. It is directed by Justin Simien, who is known for his work on Dear White People and is set to release on July 28, 2023. The film stars Rosario Dawson, LaKeith Stanfield, Owen Wilson, Tiffany Haddish, and Danny DeVito.

The plot details are scarce, but the official synopsis suggests that the film will be a mix of adventure and horror. The movie will feature well-known characters from the ride, such as the Hatbox Ghost and the Bride. The movie’s first extended trailer was presented at the Disney & Pixar Studio Showcase at D23. The movie has gone through several release date changes, but the latest date seems to be final.

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