The Haunted Mansion is one of the most beloved rides at Walt Disney World since the parks’ opening in 1971. Today I am sharing some interesting Haunted Mansion fun facts!
Haunted Mansion Design Highlights
The Haunted Mansion has so many details that you can’t miss. Here are some of the highlights. Every time you ride this ride you find something new and interesting. This is the best ride to be on if the ride breaks down. I was once stuck in front of the ballroom scene and was sad that we were only stuck for about 20 minutes.
Haunted Mansion Cemetary. Once inside the wrought-iron gates that surround the stately mansion, guests step gingerly past the home’s cemetery, with tombstones featuring witty epitaphs to the dearly departed.
Interactive Queue. Throughout the interactive queue, voices, music and other paranormal behaviors get guests in the “spirit.” Guests can tap on embossed musical instruments to hear a haunting tune at a musical crypt, play with water and bubbles from a leaky tomb and help a ghostwriter overcome writer’s block outside the front entrance.
The Famous Dancing Ghosts. Thanks to a little Disney magic, ghostly apparitions seem to appear out of thin air to dance and sing in certain rooms. And eager “hitchhiking” ghosts even appear inside each doom buggy at the end of the ride to follow guests home – but not before performing ghoulish new pranks.
The Stretching Room. Summoned to the front entrance, guests enter the foyer and then an octagonal gallery that stretches…and stretches — or does it? Paintings on the wall grow longer, but the floor and ceiling never seem to move. Other portraits morph into ghastly images, including a dapperly dressed gentleman that transforms into a decrepit corpse.
Haunting Effects. Guests board doom buggies for their ghost-guided tour of the mansion. Sound and lighting effects create the mood as the darkened, eggshell-shaped vehicles glide silently through the cobwebbed library, conservatory, hallways, ballroom, attic, and graveyards. Guests even ride through Madame Leota’s séance, a collection of flying objects choreographed by a disembodied spirit trapped inside a crystal ball.
Haunted Mansion Fun Facts You May Not Know
Is Walt a Grim Grinning Ghost? The five singing busts in the graveyard scene warble the attraction’s theme song, “Grim Grinning Ghosts.” Though sometimes mistaken for Walt Disney, the face on the bust farthest to the left actually belongs to Thurl Ravenscroft, the song’s soloist. Ravenscroft is known to millions of fans as the voice of Tony the Tiger, the mascot of Kellogg’s Frosted Flakes cereal.
Moving Tombstone Eyes? The witty epitaphs on the tombstones at the attraction’s entrance pay tribute to the designers, developers, and artists who originally created The Haunted Mansion. One of the newest tombstones honors the late Walt Disney Imagineer Leota Thomas (her maiden name was Toombs). Periodically, Leota’s tombstone can be spotted slowly opening and closing the eyes on its sculpted head.
Sleeping Beauty and Haunted Mansion’s Weird Connection. Madame Leota also graces the crystal ball in the attraction’s séance scene. Leota Thomas provided the face for the crystal ball, and voice artist Eleanor Audley provided the voice. Audley is also famous as the voice of the evil Maleficent in Disney’s classic animated feature “Sleeping Beauty.”
Many Haunted Mansions. In addition to its home in the Liberty Square area at Walt Disney World Resort, The Haunted Mansion is featured at Disneyland Resort (in New Orleans Square), Tokyo Disneyland (in Fantasyland) and Disneyland Paris (known as Phantom Manor and located in Frontierland). It is the only Disney attraction to be featured in four different park “lands” worldwide.
Ride then Movie. Most of the time a Disney movie inspires a ride. With Haunted Mansion, a ride inspired the Haunted Mansion movie starring Eddie Murphy.
The Bullwinkle Show. Bullwinkle says, “Eenie Meenie chili beanie, the spirits are about to speak.” Legendary voice artist Paul Frees — known to many as Boris Badenov from “The Bullwinkle Show” — is the attraction’s narrator, or “ghost host.
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