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Disney’s The Haunted Mansion Stars 999 Happy Faces (For Now)

Rosario Dawson. Photo: Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images for NYFW: The Shows

Disneyland/Walt Disney World/Tokyo Disneyland’s Haunted Mansion is home to 999 happy haunts. Disney’s The Haunted Mansion, a new live-action film designed to memory-hole the Eddie Murphy one out of existence, has almost 999 happy actors in the cast, per an announcement made at D23. Directed by Dear White People’s Justin Simien and written by The Heat’s Katie Dippold, this new Haunted Mansion will star Rosario Dawson as a single mom who gets a deal too good to be true on a New Orleans mansion. And wouldn’t you know it? The dang thing is haunted! Dawson will enlist a priest (Owen Wilson), a psychic (Tiffany Haddish), a historian (Danny DeVito), and a paranormal expert (LaKeith Stanfield) to rid her home of the ghosts and ghoulies currently making her life hell. If it sounds suspiciously like the premise for 1963’s The Haunting, that is most likely by design. Imagineers referenced that film for many of the gags in the ride. Incidentally, Owen Wilson was in the 1999 version of The Haunting. He got his head chomped off by a big-ass ghost lion, which probably won’t happen again. What are the odds?

At D23, Jamie Lee Curtis took the stage in one of the ride’s iconic Doom Buggies to announce that she would be playing fan-favorite ride character Madame Leota, the head-in-a-crystal-ball played by Jennifer Tilly in 2003. The trailer released at D23 also highlighted cameos from Winona Ryder, Hasan Minhaj, and Dan Levy with Jared Leto playing the Hatbox Ghost, a character with a cult-like fanbase. The Haunted Mansion will begin receiving guests in theaters August 11, 2023.

This story has been updated.

The 999 Happy Stars in Disney’s The Haunted Mansion