Haunted Mansion Holiday

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Haunted Mansion Holiday
Haunted Mansion Holiday Sign.JPG
Disneyland
Area New Orleans Square
Status Operating
Opening date October 3, 2001
Tokyo Disneyland
Area Fantasyland
Status Operating
Opening date September 15, 2004
General statistics
Attraction type Omnimover
Manufacturers Arrow Development (Disneyland)
Designer Walt Disney Imagineering
Theme The Nightmare Before Christmas
Music Gordon Goodwin (original)
Danny Elfman/John Debney
(A Musical History of Disneyland)
Speed 3 mph (4.8 km/h)
Vehicle type Doom Buggies
Riders per vehicle 2-3
Audio-animatronics Yes
Host

Ghost Host (Corey Burton) (Disneyland version)

Ghost Host (Ponta Mitsui) (Tokyo Disneyland version)
Must transfer from wheelchair

Haunted Mansion Holiday is a seasonal overlay of Disneyland's Haunted Mansion attraction.[1] (A similar overlay called Haunted Mansion Holiday Nightmare can be found at Tokyo Disneyland.) It blends the settings and characters of the original Haunted Mansion with those of Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas. The Haunted Mansion typically closes for two and half weeks in September so it can be converted into the Haunted Mansion Holiday. The overlaid attraction is then open to guests from late-September through early-January, before being closed again during January so the overlay can be removed.

History[edit]

Two similar overlays - Country Bear Christmas Special and It's a Small World Holiday - had already been successful for some time when Haunted Mansion Holiday was developed. Initially, Disney considered doing a retelling of A Christmas Carol, but decided against it due to the attraction's setting in New Orleans Square and the incongruity of bringing Santa Claus into the eerie environment of the Haunted Mansion. Instead, they decided to base it on The Nightmare Before Christmas after considering which Disney character would celebrate Christmas in the Haunted Mansion, should Santa Claus ever land there on his journey. Steve Davison took the idea and worked with Walt Disney Creative Entertainment to develop the overlay.

One issue Disney had to deal with was the fact that all the key performers in the original attraction - Paul Frees, Leota Toombs, Eleanor Audley, Thurl Ravenscroft, the rest of the singing busts, and almost all of the original voice actors - had died years earlier. Paul Frees was replaced in his role as the Ghost Host by Corey Burton, who had done voiceover work with Disney before. Leota Toombs' daughter, Kim Irvine, resembled her mother and was thus chosen to perform in her place as Madame Leota. Susan Blakeslee (whose voice resembles Eleanor Audley) provides the voice of Madame Leota. The singing busts were topped with Jack-O-Lanterns and given computer-animated singing projections. New voice actors were picked for the graveyard ghosts that sound similar to the originals (with the exception of the Headsman Trio; The Knight now has an English accent instead of the German accent he normally has, and the Executioner sounds nothing like Candy Candido).

Haunted Mansion Holiday opened October 3, 2001 and quickly became popular with guests, leading to the attraction's FastPass machines being activated during the overlay (they are normally inactive). The Tokyo version props were intended for Walt Disney World, but when the park abandoned plans to install the attraction, Tokyo (which features a carbon copy of their Haunted Mansion) received all the props. On September 13, 2013 (Friday the 13th) the Haunted Mansion at Disneyland opened to the public outfitted with new effects and set pieces in celebration of its 13th year. Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Paris do not have seasonal overlays however, outside of Phantom Manor you can get your photo with a Cast Member of Jack and Sally.

Storyline[edit]

The Haunted Mansion Holiday takes place shortly after the events of the film it conjoins with, The Nightmare Before Christmas, where Jack Skellington, who tried to create his very own twisted Christmas in a Halloween-style overlay in the movie, now discovers the Haunted Mansion, home to 999 Happy Haunts. Deciding to spread joy to the mansion's gloomy residents for the holidays, Jack and his creepy crew from Halloween Town bring hundreds of Jack's original evil Christmas presents and decorations to the manor and deck the haunting grounds for a thrilling and chilling holiday for the Grim Grinning Ghosts inhabiting the abandoned house, setting the stage for the ride itself.

The attraction[edit]

The mansion viewed from the outside

Entrance

  • Disneyland:
    • The outside of the Mansion has been covered in both jack-o-lanterns and Christmas decorations. On the roof is Jack Skellington's coffin sleigh and stretched from the roof to the floor is his comical "Christmas Equation". There is also the countdown clock from Nightmare that tells how many days are left until Christmas (during the first year of operation the clock's setting was changed each day, but ever since has remained static at "000"). A music box track from Disneyland Paris' Phantom Manor plays in the outdoor areas.
  • Tokyo Disneyland
    • The Mansion does not have a countdown clock or a Christmas Equation hanging from the roof, because of the design differences between the Mansions. Pumpkin-snowmen can be seen and orchestrations from the movie and ride play in the queue area.

Foyer

  • Disneyland and Tokyo Disneyland
    • Guests are then ushered into the foyer, which has been decorated with skull wreaths and such. The Ghost Host begins to tell the story of the attraction in rhyme:

and guests proceed into one of the two portrait chambers.

    • At Tokyo, a painting of Jack transforming from the Pumpkin King to his Sandy Claws guise replaces the Aging Man changing portrait.

Octagonal Room

  • Disneyland and Tokyo Disneyland
    • The stretching portraits have been replaced with stained-glass pictures depicting innocent Christmas scenes, with wreaths as their frames. When the doors close, the chamber goes dark and begins to stretch. The pictures shatters in half and the shattered halves separate to reveal luminescent portraits of Jack in his Santa Clause outfit riding his coffin sleigh high above the mansion with his ghost dog Zero leading the way, a man-eating wreath, scary toys, Jack opening a giant sack as ghosts rise up and a giant carnivorous snake. The Ghost Host begins reciting a dark variation of "'Twas the Night Before Christmas" from Tim Burton's original poem as eerie music plays, extensively featuring a choir. The suspense builds until lightning crashes and Jack's face appears above, cackling, "Happy Holidays, everyone!", to replace the hanging body of the ghost host. His laughter fills the room, a woman screams and everything goes pitch black.
    • For the 13th anniversary of the attraction in Disneyland, a new effect is being implemented in the stretching room. The ceiling is now a giant stained-glass wreath. It remains lit throughout the stretching sequence, slowing changing color. At the climax, big chunks of the glass ceiling shatter turning it into a giant, menacing pumpkin face. Then more of the ceiling shatters to show the cupola and Jack waves at us before he leers through the hole saying "Happy Holidays, everyone!" and scampers away. After he leaves, the final scene that we see is the rafters and the hanged body that is usually seen during regular operations.

Leaving the Octagonal Room

  • Disneyland
    • The doors open, leading into the portrait hall. The changing portraits here have also been replaced with ones depicting Jack Skellington turning into Sandy Claws, Sally holding a destroyed tree (like in the film), the Haunted Mansion turning into the holiday version, Santa turns into Jack, and a snowman turns into a pumpkin man. Similar usage to the regular portrait hallways.
    • The choir returns as the song "Kidnap the Sandy Claws" begins to play, accompanied by a harpsichord. A snowstorm appears to be taking place outside the windows and the three musicians from the movie are also outside. The staring busts have spider-webs in front of them that glisten with the words "NOEL" and "HO-HO-HO." The loading area is decorated with even more Halloween and Christmas decor, and there is a huge animated Christmas card, with many of the characters from Nightmare celebrating the season. The card is much of a treat to the eyes itself, featuring the words "MERRY CHRISTMAS" at the bottom of the card, whereas the message changes to "SCARY CHRISTMAS" occasionally.
    • For the 13th anniversary of the attraction in Disneyland, an animated Zero has been inserted into the portraits. He flies around causing the portraits to change from the original picture to another similar picture.
  • Tokyo Disneyland
    • Immediately after the portrait chamber, the guests enter the loading area, which is decorated with orange Christmas lights and Halloween pumpkins.

After load area and before the Conservatory

  • Disneyland
    • Upon boarding the doom buggies, guests ascend the staircase. At the top, there are piles of presents with the Vampire Teddy sitting on them, fishing for humans.
  • Tokyo Disneyland
    • After boarding, the guests glide underneath a landing from where Jack, Sally and the Vampire Teddy Bear, greet guests. The ride through Portrait Corridor features portraits of the film's characters performing various activities, and watching as the guests go by.
    • Orange Christmas lights wrap around the staring busts in the library as Zero wraps a floating tree made out of books with tinsel garland. In the music room, guests see a life-size audio-animatronic Sally, seeming depressed and sitting in the chair next to the ghostly piano that the Vampire Teddy plays.
    • The doom buggies then move up the stairs, passing terrified green cockroaches in cages, with gift tags that read: "For Oogie." At the top of the stairs, Oogie Boogie's shadow appears and turns into a Christmas tree shape in the full moon above. The original, black-lighted rubber spiders remain.

The Endless Hallway, the Conservatory, the Corridor of Doors and the Clock Hall

  • Disneyland and Tokyo Disneyland
    • As the Ghost Host continues explaining the story, Zero is now seen floating in the endless hallway. The moving suit of armor wears a pumpkin mask and has garland wrapped around it. A pile of dog bones are in front of the hallway and a wreath made of dog bones adorns the top of the hall. On one floating bone, a tag reads "To Zero". Presents sit in the chair and poinsettias reside next to the chair.
    • The corpse trapped in the coffin is unchanged, but the Vampire Teddy now sits on it, hammering nails back in. A tag reading "Do Not Open 'Til Christmas" hangs from the lid. The dead funeral flowers have sprung back to life and now choir the song "Kidnap the Sandy Claws".
    • The corridor of doors is now filled with the same comically vicious flowers, all singing loudly. Guests then pass underneath a large, yellow-eyed man-eating wreath with teeth, which all the flowers seem to be connected to.
    • The demonic grandfather clock remains. A note reads "To Leota: 13 Special Gifts for You! -Sandy Claws"

The Séance Room

  • Disneyland
    • Madame Leota floats along with several glowing ornaments surrounding her and now chants The 13 Days of Christmas with Vampire Teddy sits on the top of the chair behind Leota's table, ringing two tiny bells with the seance. A bewitched nutcracker with eyes glowing green moves its mouth in unison with Leota. The floating instruments have been replaced with huge tarot cards, depicting Leota's 13 Christmas gifts, of which she is chanting.
  • Tokyo Disneyland
    • The scene is similar to the one in Disneyland, but with a few additions and changes: the raven remains in this scene and Leota is covered in candles, with Lock, Shock, and Barrel appearing in the back of the room.

The Ballroom

  • Disneyland and Tokyo Disneyland
    • The doom buggies then move into the ballroom. The ghosts here are the same, but the decorations have changed. The table is set for a Christmas party and a huge ginger-dead house sits in the center, which is different each year. An immense dead Christmas tree (with one live branch at the top) covered in skull and jack-o-lantern candles and spiders with lights now sits in the middle of the dance floor, but the ghosts waltz right through it. Zero floats above the scene near the tree at both parks.
    • At Disneyland, the curtains at the top of the staircase in the back of the hall have opened, revealing the mansion's library, complete with a floating tree made of books held up by Zero. In Tokyo, Jack and Sally's shadows are seen exchanging presents behind that curtain instead.
    • For the 13th Anniversary in Disneyland, the Ginger-dead house is featured as a big advent pyramid with little doors with numbers 1-13, topped with a candy Haunted Mansion. Leading up to the last 13 days, the doors on the house will open to reveal Jack Skellington's facial expressions.

The Attic

  • Disneyland and Tokyo Disneyland
    • Guests are then taken to the attic, where most of the usual props and characters have been replaced with a clutter of all sorts of creepy toys and presents wrapped in bright but deathly wrapping paper. A huge snake coils around the room with a "naughty and nice" list hanging out of its mouth and presents in its stomach. Throughout the room, some of the evil toys come to life as the guests pass by, including three jack-in-the-boxes (one featuring a stylized skull, another a black cat's head and another a jack-o-lantern), a bullet hole-ridden duck, a cymbal-crashing Oogie Boogie doll and a monstrous train on tentacle-like tracks.

The Graveyard

  • Disneyland and Tokyo Disneyland
    • As you leave the attic and head out onto the balcony, snowflakes are seen falling instead of ghosts rising. Going down the stairs next to the balcony, the guests witness the Vampire Teddy chewing on Christmas lights, threatening to blow a fuse. As the doom buggies reach the bottom, they pass by an audio-animatronic figure of Jack in his Sandy Claws outfit with Zero at his side, wishing the guests a Merry Christmas as a replacement to the wide-eyed caregiver and his terrified dog. The graveyard is now covered in snow, and the spiral hill from the movie is featured as a centerpiece, covered in glowing pumpkins. The music combines "Grim Grinning Ghosts", "Jingle Bells", "We Wish You a Merry Christmas" and "Jolly Old St. Nicholas". The vehicles pass under huge snow angels with jack-o-lantern heads. The singing busts have been replaced with singing jack-o-lanterns at the base of the spiral hill. Before entering the crypt, guests see the Vampire Teddy one last time, playing a trumpet with another pumpkin-headed snow angel above.

The Crypt

  • Disneyland
    • The doom buggies then enter the crypt, where now, an audio-animatronic Oogie Boogie stands next to a roulette machine under black light, offering the guests a game. The guests see bizarre presents instead of hitchhiking ghosts when they go by the mirrors and if the present is a coffin imprinted with a question mark, Lock, Shock, and Barrel will pop out from behind each of the three mirrors. Lastly, there is a tiny version of Sally, who thanks Jack and tells guests to hurry back.
  • Tokyo Disneyland
    • The Ghost Host warns guests about followers, as Lock, Shock, and Barrel playfully peek out of presents. Guilded mirrors surround the next walls, and in those mirrors, Lock, Shock, or Barrel sit in your car. Sally can then be seen, waving to Jack as he leaves, crossing the face of the moon and wishing her a Merry Christmas.

Soundtrack[edit]

The attraction's musical score was originally composed by Gordon Goodwin. It was replaced in 2002 with an adapted score by John Debney, based on themes from the film's soundtrack composed by Danny Elfman. Since 2003, Goodwin's original music has been used in the stretching rooms and the exit crypt (where Goodwin's attic music is used), while the rest of Elfman's score remains. Several characters in the ride are voiced by the original actors from the film, and the various sound effects are an admixture of tracks from the original attraction and new ones.

New Additions[edit]

Disneyland offers an "Oogie Boogie's Holiday Tricks and Treats" Scavenger hunt. Oogie has hidden cameos throughout the mansion, which guests are implored to look for. For instance, Oogie can be found in shrubbery in the gardens, a shadow on the Christmas Card, a doll in the attic, etc.

CD Cover Artwork
Track listing
  1. Up on the Housetop (2:07)
  2. Scary Bells (1:52)
  3. Over the Graveyards (1:40)
  4. Old Mansion Tree (2:01)
  5. Wreck the Halls (2:10)
  6. We Wish You a Scary Christmas (1:45)
  7. The 13 Days of Christmas (2:17)
  8. God Rest You Merry Grinning Ghosts (1:53)
  9. Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas Medley (2:30)
    • Includes - Making Christmas/What's This?/Kidnap the Sandy Claws
  10. Disneyland Haunted Mansion Holiday Ride-Through Mix (16:20)
    • Includes - Foyer, Elevators, Elevator Exit, Picture Gallery, Loading Zone, Corridor of Doors, Seance Room, Grand Hall, Attic, Graveyard Finale, Oogie's Holiday Tricks and Treats.

Voice Actors[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "DoomBuggies.com" Retrieved on March 14, 2012.

External links[edit]