Disney Announces ‘Haunted Mansion’ Remake Directed by Guillermo del Toro

New footage and the new TRON Legacy trailer at the San Diego Comic-Con panel weren’t the only surprises up Walt Disney Studios’ sleeve. After the panel supposedly ended and many had scattered, moderator Patton Oswalt introduced a couple of new juicy items for those who remained.

Reminiscent of the Studios’ D23 Expo presentation, those who left early failed once again to see Captain Jack Sparrow himself. Not in the flesh this time however, Johnny Depp as Sparrow made a 3D appeal to the audience denying he was involved in gathering up a crew on a quest to find the fountain of youth. Zombies, mermaids and Penelope Cruz were enough to fight off any interest he may have had embarking on the quest and — he adds quite simply — he’d need a bloody map to find it — or at least a bloody mary, if not both.

But the really big news came after Depp’s virtual appearance. Oswalt surveyed the crowd asking if Disney could remake any film (not Newsies), which would the crowd like to see? The answer comes in the form of Haunted Mansion.

But this time, Eddie Murphy will not be wearing the hat of the lead role. That honor goes to the long lost infamous Hatbox Ghost. So says the director of the film, Guillermo del Toro, who announced a partnership with Walt Disney Studios in the way of Truth or Dare films at last year’s D23 Expo.

Del Toro (who did appear in the flesh), explained that the remake will be live action horror and scary — if you take children to it, ‘they will scream.’ It will not be a comedy and it will remain true to the original imagineers’ vision of the classic Disneyland attraction.

Del Toro spoke at length about his love of the attraction and how he visits it at least once a year to relax — ‘that’s how freaky I am,’ he explained. At home, del Toro already owns much Haunted Mansion memorabilia from the likes of Marc Davis, amongst others. And with the new film, he noted, he hopes to be able to bring home a lot of the props.

More information to come.

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