A New Haunted Mansion Movie Is Rising From the Grave at Disney

The Haunted Mansion may make its return to the big screen.
The Haunted Mansion may make its return to the big screen.
Photo: Disney Parks

Since the Eddie Murphy disaster, it feels like there have been about 999 tries to adapt iconic Disney ride The Haunted Mansion into a movie. If so, maybe lucky 1,000 will be the ticket.


According to the Hollywood Reporter, Disney has hired writer Katie Dippold to pen a new script based on the ride about the spooky mansion in which 999 ghosts reside, and you may be number 1,000. If you didn’t get the reference above.

Dippold was a writer on Mad TV and Parks and Recreation before graduating to features like The Heat and Ghostbusters: Answer the Call. Both of those films did a very good job of balancing action and humor, which is almost certainly a factor in her hiring. Producers Dan Lin and Jonathan Eirich, who made the Aladdin remake, are also on board.

Since the 2003 Eddie Murphy film (which sports a putrid 14% rating on Rotten Tomatoes), Disney has made numerous attempts to adapt the popular ride into a four-quadrant hit a la Pirates of the Caribbean. Most famously, Haunted Mansion superfan Guillermo del Toro had been developing an idea with Ryan Gosling attached but it never materialized. There’s no word on what Dippold’s take will do differently than previous ones, but fingers crossed she can crack the case.

The Haunted Mansion opened at Disneyland in 1969 and remains a crowd favorite today. Guests take a “Doom Buggy” on a slow ride through a gorgeously decorated mansion filled with ghosts and goblins of all shapes and sizes. Some of the characters, like Madame Leota and the Hitchhiking Ghosts, have even made their way into popular culture. There’s just a treasure trove of material to work with and it’s all just begging for a redo on the big screen.

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Entertainment Reporter for io9/Gizmodo


Both of those films did a very good job of balancing action and humor”

No they didn’t. Both of these movies relied heavily on loose improv segments wholly disconnected from the action segments. The balance was all off, especially in Ghostbusters*, where the improv scenes went on for way too long, killing the jokee. I’m not sure you can blame that on the screenwriter though - Paul Feig isn’t very good at action, period. Spy was decent, but even that had lackluster action scenes.

* And yes, I know the action scenes in the original Ghostbusters were pretty lame - mostly because it wasn’t an action movie. Like, at all. In fact, I felt that one of the big flaws of Answer the Call (and of MiB: International, which copies AtC a lot) is that they had too many scenes of big action spectacle. If you look ack at both Ghostbusters and MiB, you’ll see that they are pretty light action-wise until the finale.