Haunted Mansion Holiday

Infobox Disney ride
name=Haunted Mansion Holiday


caption=The Pumpkin King statue outside of the Haunted Mansion in Disneyland in 2004.
park=Disneyland
land=New Orleans Square
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opened=every September (since 2001)
closed=every January (since 2002)
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A Musical History of Disneyland
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Infobox Disney ride
name=Haunted Mansion Holiday Nightmare


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park=Tokyo Disneyland
land=Fantasyland
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Haunted Mansion Holiday is a seasonal attraction at the Disneyland park in California and Japan. Called "Haunted Mansion Holiday Nightmare" in Japan, it is a blend of Haunted Mansion and Tim Burton's "The Nightmare Before Christmas". Since 2001, Disneyland has closed The Haunted Mansion during the month of September to convert it into the Haunted Mansion Holiday. The ride is closed again during January to return the Haunted Mansion to its original state.

On September 2, 2008, Haunted Mansion was closed to install the holiday overlay. The holiday overlay was installed between September 2 and September 25, 2008. Haunted Mansion Holiday at Disneyland park in California opened on September 26, 2008.

History

Without any doubts, the holiday overlay for It's a Small World was a smash hit with guests, and proved that Imagineers could "play" with classic attractions and give guests an all new experience. Disney began searching for attractions that could be given a new holiday overlay. One of the first attractions picked was The Haunted Mansion. The first idea for a Haunted Mansion overlay was a retelling of A Christmas Carol. However, this did not make much sense in New Orleans, and The HauntedMansion wasn't a "cheery" environment for Santa Claus to play in. Instead, someone suggested using Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas. Steve Davidson took the idea and worked with Walt Disney Entertainment to make one of the most popular rides in Disney history. Entertainment faced two problems: Paul Frees, Leota Thomas, and Eleanor Audley, had passed away years earlier, which meant that there would be no Ghost Host or Madame Leota. But in a twist of fate, Entertainment found Corey Burton, who had done voice over acts with Disney before, and Kim Irvine, Leota's daughter who looked like her mother a lot. Burton who could do a ghoulishly good Paul Frees imitation, took the place of the Ghost Host, and Kim Irvine became Madame Leota, and in no time creepy decorations began to cover the mansion in head to toe, as curious guests read a sign on the mansion's gate that read; "Sandy Claws is busy decking our halls."

In September 2001, The Haunted Mansion Holiday opened its decorated doors to the public. It was a smash hit,

Storyline

The story of the new overlay of the Haunted Mansion follows the story of the Nightmare Before Christmas. Jack Skellington wants to show everyone that he can make a Christmas too and sets out from Halloween Town like he does in the movie.

Popularity

This yearly holiday overlay is very popular with guests in California and Tokyo. Waits of up to two hours are not uncommon. Waits range from forty five minutes to the aforementioned two hours, usually longer than The Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage. The FASTPASS machines, which are usually inactive the rest of the year, are activated during the Haunted Mansion Holiday, due to its increased popularity.

The attraction

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 Halloween, X-mas. As guests wind through the outside line, creepy yet peaceful carols constantly play.

At 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 while waiting.

Guests are then ushered into the Foyer, which has been decorated with skull wreaths and such. The Ghost Host (voiced at Disneyland by Corey Burton), begins to tell us the story in rhyme, and then leads us into one of the two Portrait Chambers. At Tokyo, the painting of Pumpkin King-to-Sandy Claws Jack, replaces the changing, man-to-corpse portrait of Master Gracey.

The Stretching Portraits have been fully replaced with beautiful, 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 make sounds, as if bursting into shards, and luminescent portraits of a Halloween version of Christmas emerge, showing scary toys, a man-eating wreath, a giant carnivorous snake, and Sandy Claws with the coffin sleigh. The Ghost Host begins reciting the "Nightmare Before Christmas", as eerily-made carols are sung by an invisible choir. The suspense builds with the music and story, until lightning crashes and Jack's face appears above us, cackling "Happy Holidays Everyone!". His creepy laughter fills the room, a woman screams, and everything goes pitch black.

The doors open, leading into the Portrait Corridor. The changing portraits here have also been replaced with new ones. These ones depict Jack Skellington, Sally Finklestein, the Haunted Mansion, a snowman, and Santa Claus in his sleigh. The choir returns as the song, "Kidnap the Sandy Claws", begins to play. It appears to be snowing outside the windows, and the three musicians from the movie are also outside. The Moving Busts are pretty much unchanged, but they now have spider-webs on them, that glisten "NOEL", and "HO-HO-HO." The Load Area is now decorated with even more Halloween/Christmas decor, and there is a huge, animated Christmas Card, with all the characters from "Nightmare", celebrating the season.

At Tokyo, there is no Portrait Corridor like Disneyland's. So instead, after the Portrait Chamber, the guests enter the Load Area, decorated by orange Christmas lights and Halloween pumpkins. After boarding, the guests glide underneath a landing from where Jack, Sally, and Vampire Teddy, greet guests. The ride through Portrait Corridor features portraits of the film's characters performing various activities, and watching as guests go by. Orange Christmas lights wrap around the Moving Busts of 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 Vampire Teddy plays. Your Doom Buggy moves up the stairs, and passes terrifed, green cockroaches in cages, with gift tags that read: "For Oogie." At the very top of the stairs Oogie Boogie's shadow appears, and turns into a Christmas tree shape, in the full moon above. However, the orginal, black-lighted rubber spiders remain.

At Disneyland, upon boarding your Doom Buggy, you move up the Grand Staircase. At the top, there are piles of presents with the Vampire Teddy sitting on them, fishing for humans! As the Ghost Host continues 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 of dog bones adorns the top of the hall. On one floating bone, a tag reads, "To Zero". Presents sit in the chair and pointsetas reside next to the chair. The corpse trapped in the coffin is the same, but the Vampire Teddy now sits on it, hammering nails back in. A tag reading: "Do Not Open Till X-Mas", hangs from the lid. The dead funeral flowers have sprung to life, and now choir the song, "Kidnap the Sandy Claus". The corridor of doors is now filled with the same, comically vicious-looking flowers, all fa-la-la-la-ing . Guests then pass underneath a giant, yellow eyed, monstrous wreath with teeth, which all the flowers seem to be connected to. For some reason, in 2001 the portrait of the man in the hallway holding a hatchet and a noose was taken down for the overlay and replaced with a portrait of Jack. The Jack portrait never returned, the demonic grandfather clock remains.

Madame Leota now chants about the "13 Days of Christmas". At Disneyland, Vampire Teddy sits on the back of a chair, ringing two tiny bells with the seance. At Tokyo the raven remains in this scene, and Leota is covered in candles. Also at Tokyo Lock, Shock, and Barrel appear in the very back of the room dancing. A bewitched nutcracker with eyes glowing green moves its mouth in unison with her. The floating instruments have been replaced with huge tarot cards, depicting what Madame Leota is chanting. The Doom Buggies now move into the grand hall. The ghosts here are the same, but the decorations have changed. The table is set for a Christmas party and a huge gingerbread mansion cake (which seems to have come alive) sits in the center. An immense dead Christmas tree covered in candles and spiders with lights now sits in the middle of the dance floor, but the waltzing ghosts dance right through it. Zero floats above the scene near the tree at both parks, and at Tokyo Jack and Sally's shadows are seen exchanging presents behind a curtain. This is the only scene where the raven remains at Disneyland.

Guests are then taken to the attic. Almost all traces of Constance,the Black-Widow Bride and her theming are gone. The attic is now cluttered with all sorts of creepy toys and presents. A huge snake coils around the room with a naughty and nice list in its mouth. Throughout the room, various evil toys pop up as the guests pass by, including Jack-o-Lantern in the boxes, bullet hole ridden ducks, a cymbol crashing Oogie doll, and a monstrous train on tentacle tracks. Despite the fact it is a toy, Vampire Teddy doesn't appear at all in the attic because there is no raven in the Attic scene during the regular show.

As you fall out of the mansion's attic, snowflakes are seen falling instead of ghosts rising. Going down the hill, the guests witness Vampire Teddy chewing on Christmas lights threatening to blow a fuze, plunging the holiday into chaos! As the Doom Buggies descend and reach the bottom, they pass by a very lifelike audio-animatronic figure of Jack in his Sandy Claws outfit, wishing the guests a Merry Christmas and so on. The graveyard is now covered in snow. The ghosts, ghouls, and goblins make Christmas trees and sing the new song. The Curly Hill from the movie is covered in glowing pumpkins and snow. The music is now a combination of "Grim Grinning Ghosts", "Jingle Bells", "We Wish You a Merry Christmas" and "Jolly Old St. Nicholas". The cars pass under huge angels made of snow with pumpkin heads. The Singing Busts' heads have been replaced with singing jack-o-lanterns. Before entering the crypt, guests find Vampire Teddy one last time, playing a trumpet with a pumpkin headed snow angel.

The Doom Buggies then enter the crypt, where an audio-animatronic Oogie Boogie stands next to a Roulette machine, laughing evilly. The guests now see bizarre presents instead of ghosts when they go by the mirrors. Lock, Shock and Barrel sometimes pop out. Lastly, Little Leota has been replaced with Sally, who thanks Jack and tells guests to hurry back.

At Tokyo, Oogie is nowhere in sight, instead Lock, Shock, and Barrel are seen inside some presents and hitch a ride with guests. Sally bids goodbye, and the guests are left off the ride at a wreath adorned mausoleum.

Soundtrack

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. Several characters in the ride are voiced by the original actors from the film.

Hidden Mickeys

* In the ballroom scene, a few piles of snow are gathered around on the floor by the hearse. One of the piles is in the shape of Mickey's head.
* One set of plates on the ballroom table is in the shape of Mickey's head: One large plate for the head and two smaller plates for the ears. This, however, is typical of the Haunted Mansion on all occasions, and not just in the holiday theme.
* In one of the stretching portraits, the Vampire Teddy from the Nightmare Before Christmas has a head with two small ears that resemble Mickey's ears. Vampire Teddy was also in the movie, and frequently featured in the ride, replacing the ride's mascot raven. It appears seven times at Disneyland, and six times at Tokyo.
* Again in the stretching portraits, a "regular" Teddy Bear wrapped around the snake can be seen as a Hidden Mickey.
* One of the "pre-stretched" portraits has a Christmas tree, where two tiny ornaments line up with a larger one.

Trivia

* The raven may seem to be on vacation but it is not, at Disneyland it resides in the Grand Hall on the balcony, and at Tokyo resides in the Seance Circle and Grand Hall.
* In the attic scene, only two names are marked naughty on the list: Tim (obviously Tim Burton) and Vincent (from the short film of the same name, and Vincent Price, famous horror actor and friend of Tim Burton. He also provided the original Phantom Manor narraration).
* Early concepts for the ride were overlays based on Twas the Night Before Christmas, and A Christmas Carol. Both ideas declined because A Christmas Carol would not make sense in New Orleans and it would be weird if Santa was introduced into such a macabre area.
* The Tokyo version props were intended for Walt Disney World, but when the park neglected the attraction, Tokyo which features a carbon copy of their Haunted Mansion, received all the props.
* The attraction has had a rather infamous transition of music. In 2001, the music was composed by Gordon Goodwin and featured original music, incorporating classic holiday songs such as Jingle Bells, Deck the Halls, and Carol of the Bells. From 2002 on, new music was used, written by John Debney, based on themes from the movie. This has had a polarizing effect on fans, drawing both criticism and praise. Since 2003, Goodwin's original music has been used in the Stretching Rooms and the Crypt/Mirror Room (Where Goodwin's Attic music is used for Oogie's Holiday Tricks and Treats), while the rest of Debney's score remains.
* At Disneyland the eerie music in the beginning is from Phantom Manor, from the gazebo scene. The Manor doesn't have the overlay, even though it dresses for Halloween with the rest of the park.
* Many fans speculated the attraction wouldn't come back in 2007 due to request of Tim Burton, but Disney stated that wasn't true.Fact|date=April 2008
* The holiday overlay increased the popularity of The Haunted Mansion and The Nightmare Before Christmas.
* The overlay was intended as a one time thing since that's what Tim wanted, but when Disney found how popular it was they requested to Tim to do it again. The deal is now that Disney must put something new in each year to keep doing it or Tim will retire the overlay.Fact|date=April 2008

See also

* Haunted Mansion
* The Nightmare Before Christmas
* Phantom Manor
* Jack Skellington
* Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage

External links

* [http://www.doombuggies.com/ Doombuggies.com]
* http://www.disneyland.com


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