A trailer has been released for a cartoon based on Disney’s Haunted Mansion ride, though unfortunately for fans, the company is not currently planning to greenlight it.
The Haunted Mansion is one of the most famous attractions at the various Disney theme parks; one is available at Disneyland, Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom and Tokyo Disneyland, with similar haunted houses in other locations. Promising “999 happy haunts,” it features a ride through the titular manor with a variety of spooky, delightful effects.
The ride has also had a surprisingly large effect on popular culture; it inspired a theatrical film starring Eddie Murphy, while a reboot by Guillermo del Toro is currently in production hell. Comics and video games have also been made about the location and its characters, and indeed, some hardcore Disney fans could easily name the various ghosts and their implied backstories.
The animated series is being spearheaded by Shannon Tindle, the creator and writer of the Laika movie Kubo and the Two Strings. She reportedly made two pilots for the program, in order to allow Disney to pick which approach they wanted to go with. She also released the trailer on her social media.
In the 50 second teaser, the camera moves slowly down a hallway lined with pictures, a door at the end dimly lit. A girl’s voice says, “When hinges creak in doorless chambers… and strange and frightening sounds echo through the halls… whenever candlelights flicker where the air is deathly still… that is the time when ghosts are present… practicing their terror with ghoulish delight.”
The camera then focuses on a moving painting, which depicts a ship in a stormy sea. Suddenly, a girl pulls herself out of the water and leans out of the frame, gasping for air.
“Welcome, foolish mortals, to the Haunted Mansion. It’s gonna be a bumpy ride.”
The project certainly sounds ambitious; according to Tindle, the plan was to follow multiple characters whose subplots would connect into a single overarching narrative, which would weave together the various ideas by Disney’s Imagineering division, WED.
Though Disney is not planning to go ahead with the project, it has a lot of fan support, so perhaps it could still be picked up; the same happened to shows like Adventure Time when their pilots got cult followings. Until then, the possibilities will haunt fans’ dreams.