Haunted Mansion Horrifies in a New Star-Studded Trailer

Haunted Mansion Horrifies in a New Star-Studded Trailer
Contributor: Rob Bricken and Linda Codega

We’d seen a little Haunted Mansion footage at the D23 Expo last year, but it didn’t prepare us for the movie’s first actual trailer back in March. If you’re a diehard Disney fan, you’ll probably recognise dozens of nods (if not outright replications) of spooks and scares from the beloved ride, but even if you’re not, Haunted Mansion looks like it could be a lot of fun.

In the trailer that came out in March, we said we were most impressed with the fact the movie seems to be a horror movie first and foremost, based on a loving homage to the Disney attraction. The humour — which works, in our opinion — doesn’t overwhelm the frights, which would take all the horror out of it. And although this is clearly a family movie, it looks like it’s quite willing to scare those families as opposed to watering everything down. All in all, impressed.

Check out the first trailer for yourself:

The new Haunted Mansion trailer shows that this movie’s not just going to be for kids. Much like Pirates of the Caribbean was kid-friendly, but still aimed at adults, it looks like Haunted Mansion is going for the exact same tone. Take a look at the new trailer we got today.

The plot seems pretty straightforward; a group of people in a haunted house have to figure out a way to dispel the spirits trapped inside or risk becoming part of the haunting forever. The trailer also includes a bunch of winks to the Disney ride — characters like the ghostly axe-wielding bride Constance Hatchaway, the Hat Box Ghost (Jared Leto), the crystal-ball ghost Madam Leota (Jamie Lee Curtis), and the trio of hitchhiking ghosts. The stretching room that sinks downwards is also a callback to the opening part of the ride when people are first ushered into the mansion.

Other castmembers include LaKeith Stanfield, Tiffany Haddish, Owen Wilson, Danny DeVito, Rosario Dawson, Chase W. Dillon, Dan Levy. It’s directed by Justin Simien (Dear White People, Bad Hair) and written by Katie Dippold (2016’s Ghostbusters, Parks and Recreation).

With a kind of campy horror vibe, there’s an overwhelming sense of nostalgia from the latest trailer. The overwrought style of the ghosts, the classic tropes, even the Clue-esque whodunit characters shown in the trailer as a mother and son hire a bunch of suckers to get rid of the ghosts in their home. A mix in between Beetlejuice and Casper, Haunted Mansion doesn’t seem to be taking notes from contemporary horror (which, fair given the classic source material) — and will probably be just as family-friendly scares-wise as the ride itself.

The spookiness begins on August 31, when the Haunted Mansion comes to theatres in Australia (about a month after the U.S. but alas, at least it’s coming).

This article has been updated since it was first published.