SDCC Disney: Guillermo Del Toro to Write and Produce THE HAUNTED MANSION Reboot – UPDATED

     July 22, 2010


After the awesome TRON: Legacy panel, Disney still had time on the clock. As most of the people got up to leave, moderator Patton Oswalt had two more things to tease. First was a specially shot 3D teaser of Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, featuring Johnny Depp as Captain Jack Sparrow. Then, they officially announced that Guillermo del Toro will write and produce a remake of The Haunted Mansion, sans Eddie Murphy. Hit the jump for more details.

Updated with official press release from Walt Disney that says he will only be writing and producing. It appears GDT might direct the project, but nothing is official.

The Pirates trailer wasn’t really much. It teased Sparrow taking a ship to the fountain of youth and encountering zombies, mermaids, and more. He talked a lot about getting drunk and also hanging out with Penelope Cruz. It was kind of amusing, but nothing overtly exciting.

Patton then asked, “What Disney property do you want to see remade? And don’t say Newsies.” They showed a little animation that revealed The Haunted Mansion and you could basically feel the entire room just sort of sigh. He then asked, If you could imagine one director to make this film, who would it be, and brought out Del Toro. The place went wild and the mood immediately shifted.

Del Toro talked about how he was a huge fan of the original ride ever since he first rode it when he was 3 years old and has rode it at least once every year since. The film will be in live-action 3D, it won’t be a comedy (sorry Eddie Murphy), and the tone is “scary and fun.”

The director added that the film will center on a character that he hopes will get reintroduced to the ride, The Hatbox Ghost.

It wasn’t a bunch of information but Patton Oswalt put it best. Who better than the guy who directed Pan’s Labyrinth and The Devil’s Backbone to have full reign over a haunted mansion?

guillermo_del_toro_image__4_Shortly after posting the story, Disney sent out a press release:


Del Toro Set to Write and Produce Film for Disney

SAN DIEGO, Calif. – July 22, 2010 –Guillermo del Toro surprised the 6,500 fans gathered today at Comic-Con with the announcement that he is currently developing a new film for The Walt Disney Studios based on the classic Disney theme park attraction, The Haunted Mansion.

“Dark imagery is an integral part of the Walt Disney legacy.  After all, Disney himself was the father of some really chilling moments and characters – think Chernabog from Fantasia or Maleficent as the Dragon or the Evil Queen in Snow White,” said del Toro.  “I couldn’t be more excited to be a part of my own adaptation of the original theme park attraction Walt envisioned and that remains- for me- the most desirable piece of real estate in the whole world!”

“Millions of people from around the world visit The Haunted Mansion each year, but no one has ever had a tour guide like Guillermo del Toro,” said Rich Ross, Chairman of The Walt Disney Studios. “Guillermo is one of the most gifted and innovative filmmakers working today and he is going to take audiences on a visually-thrilling journey like they’ve never experienced before.”

Since August 1969, foolish mortals have dared to trespass on the macabre grounds of Disney’s Haunted Mansion. A hallowed landmark in Disneyland’s New Orleans square, it’s the dwelling place of 999 happy haunts dying to meet new visitors each day. The plantation-style of the mansion’s facade is a sweet deception for visitors. Inside, ghostly doom buggies line the hallways. Since its construction, the mysteries of the mansion have transcended the attraction with stories surfacing about horrifying encounters with the supernatural.  Versions of the daunting edifice have been built at other Disney theme parks in Orlando, Tokyo and Paris.

For more Comic-Con coverage, click here.

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