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Disney's Haunted Mansion - What We Know So Far

While the Marvel Cinematic Universe may be one of the bigger money-makers for Disney, the company has not abandoned the idea that movies based on their popular rides at Disney World and Disneyland can be big hits for audiences. This strategy has been relatively successful from the most recent "Jungle Cruise" to the highly popular "Pirates of the Caribbean" franchise. Still, there's one intellectual property that didn't quite work out for the company the first time, so, naturally, Disney is giving it another go. Say hello to "Haunted Mansion," round two.

The first attempt at a "Haunted Mansion" movie came in 2003 and starred Eddie Murphy. While it did gross $182 million worldwide (per Box Office Mojo), its budget was a reasonably high $90 million, and the film was panned by critics and audiences alike (via Rotten Tomatoes). Disney abandoned the property after that. However, in 2020, The Hollywood Reporter announced that a new "Haunted Mansion" movie was in the works. Since then, fans have wondered what they can expect from a new film centered around the famous Disney ride.

Luckily, we now have a pretty solid idea of what the film is bringing to the table.

When will Haunted Mansion release?

An exact release date for "Haunted Mansion" has not yet been announced, as the film has yet to enter production at the time of this publication. However, the film does have director Justin Simien on board to helm, and, according to The Hollywood Reporter, principal photography will begin in October on location in Atlanta, Georgia. Given the state of the world with the pandemic still raging on and the safety precautions relating to that, it isn't easy to even guess when the film will finish filming.

Should everything go smoothly, "Haunted Mansion" could see a release date as early as Halloween time 2022 — if Disney decides to shoot for the spookiest time of the year for its premiere. If that doesn't work out, the project could debut sometime in early to mid-2023. This will depend on how well shooting and post-production go and how the release date schedule looks over the next couple of years. It seems likely that Disney would want to place "Haunted Mansion" in a slot with the least amount of competition possible. Basically, fans will have to wait for further updates.

Who is in the cast of Haunted Mansion?

The cast for the new "Haunted Mansion" film is quite stacked. The Hollywood Reporter confirmed Owen Wilson was joining the project in a starring role which continues the actor's work with Disney during his career resurgence. After all, the actor recently played the fan-favorite character Mobius in the hit MCU show "Loki," and it's fair to assume that he'll be back for Season 2 of the series.

Additionally, Tiffany Haddish and LaKeith Stanfield have joined the cast of "Haunted Mansion" (per THR). Stanfield will play a tour guide while Haddish will portray a psychic hired to communicate with the dead — presumably those in the mansion. Interestingly enough, it's not yet clear who Wilson will play in the movie, though given that it's a starring role, it will likely be someone important to the narrative rather than some obscure side character. There have been no other casting announcements, though that's likely to change as "Haunted Mansion" begins production next month.

What is the plot of Haunted Mansion?

Plot details related to "Haunted Mansion" are scarce at the moment, as Disney is keeping such elements of the project pretty close to the chest. The Hollywood Reporter added that the film will center around a family that moves into the estate and will explore their ventures with the supernatural. However, the movie will also heavily focus on the family itself, making "Haunted Mansion" more of an ensemble piece than anything.

"Haunted Mansion" is shaping up to be a much different film than its 2003 predecessor, thanks to its stellar cast and plot. Whether or not the film works for both critics and fans will likely hinge almost entirely on the story it decides to tell. As there isn't anything solid available yet in that department, all we can do is wait until Disney releases more information and cross our fingers that Eddie Murphy makes a cameo.