How Disney’s ‘The Haunted Mansion’ Reboot Will be Different

Disney fans are familiar with The Haunted Mansion theme park ride but do they recall the 2003 movie? Audiences cackled at Eddie Murphy‘s comical performance as Jim Evers–the real estate agent who brings his family into a creepy mansion. The film kicks off when the Evers family unlocks what lies beneath the home.

Nearly 20 years later, a reboot is in our midst! The funny flick is coming back to life. Naturally, fans are curious about how this time around will be different.

Disney Bob Iger standing in front of The Haunted Mansion characters
Bob Iger stands in front of a screen with Oswald the Lucky Rabbit in a scene from The Haunted Mansion | Jeff Gritchen/Digital First Media/Orange County Register via Getty Images

What was the plot of the ‘The Haunted Mansion’?

Jim and Sara Evers are two real estate agents with their own company, “Evers and Evers Real Estate.” Jim is ambitious and constantly works late; he even misses his anniversary date. As a result, Jim suggests a family vacation.

Sara is contacted by Gracey Manor’s owner, and Jim uses it as a sales opportunity. This is where the family road trip becomes a ghoulishly wacky adventure.

Edward Gracey assumes Sara is his deceased wife, Elizabeth. Traumatized from his past, Sara is forced to marry Gracey by his evil butler, Ramsey. Crystal-ball-encased Madame Leota guides the Evers family with her ominous, echoing voice; the mansion’s assistants, Emma and Ezra, also help Jim and his children, Megan and Michael, save Sara.

The movie showcases the “happy haunts” and “grim-grinning ghosts” song through the graveyard as a nod to the theme park attraction.

How is the new ‘Haunted Mansion’ different?

The cast will include different faces from the first film. Tiffany Haddish and LaKeith Stanfield are reportedly part of the cast, but Disney has not released character information yet.

According to That Hashtag Show, the film is casting for an array of new ghosts. It appears that the ghost owner, Gracey, may return under the name William. The Graceys are “a wealthy Creole couple in their early 30s” and are “free people of color from 19th century New Orleans.”

This new information is different from the 2003 Graceys. Per the report, the film also added the Mariner, a sailor with “an underlying warmth to him,” the Bride, a Victorian woman who beheaded her husbands, and the Dueling Ghost. The Butler character, however, will return.

Backstage also shared that the premise of the feature film would “follow a ghost tour guide who’s hired to investigate a haunted house alongside a gang of socially inept afterlife experts.”

Disney is on a roll with theme park-based movies

The Walt Disney Company is no stranger to creating high-budget, attraction-based flicks. So, some aren’t surprised the studio will revamp its friendly haunt of a film.

Most recognize The Pirates of the Caribbean franchise with Johnny Depp, Orlando Bloom, and Keira Knightly as the major characters. The first movie is based on the Disneyland attraction of the same name. After the swashbuckler movie became a huge hit, Disney produced four additional films.

Another Disney thematic creation is the 2021 movie, Jungle Cruise. Starring Emily Blunt and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, the flick was released in theaters and on Disney+ Premier Access. However, the Adventureland-based movie was given an early digital release.

With a new Haunted Mansion film, Disney fans speculate what other theme park attractions could wind up on the big screen. The only way for Disney to decide is if its modern movies are financially successful.

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