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Disney is lighting up its Haunted Mansion.
The studio opened the door of its Justin Simien-directed film on Wednesday and offered CinemaCon attendees in Las Vegas a deeper peek inside the movie three months ahead of its July 28 release.
Disney head of theatrical distribution Tony Chambers introduced the footage by saying that the film has a mythology that rivals Pirates of the Caribbean. “The beloved theme park attraction comes to life in a frightfully funny and edge-of-your-seat experience,” he said, adding that it features cameos “that are truly to die for.”
The new footage dropped here a little more than a month after the studio released the official trailer for the reboot that is based on the popular Disney attraction. Helmed by Simien — known for his Hulu film Bad Hair and the indie feature-turned-Netflix series Dear White People — Haunted Mansion follows Rosario Dawson’s Gabbie, a single mother and new owner of a very haunted mansion, as she teams up with a ragtag group to help her and her 9-year-old son, Travis (Chase Dillon), stave off the home’s spooky inhabitants in New Orleans.
That ragtag bunch includes a priest known as Kent (Owen Wilson), who enlists widowed scientist and failed paranormal expert Ben (LaKeith Stanfield); Harriet, a psychic from the French Quarter (Tiffany Haddish); and a grumbly historian played by Danny DeVito. Jamie Lee Curtis plays Madame Leota, and Jared Leto stars as Hatbox Ghost, with additional appearances by Winona Ryder, Dan Levy and Hasan Minhaj.
The scene CinemaCon attendees saw featured Dawson, Dillon, Wilson, Stanfield and Haddish investigating the house and trying to locate a hidden room. Stanfield’s character discovers a door disguised as a painting and the crew enters an underground lair they soon discover was used for séances. “New winner for scariest room in the house,” Wilson’s priest quips. He later asks Stanfield’s Ben, “You wanna be a hero?” to which the wannabe paranormal expert says, “Pass.”
The clip also featured some of those cameos including a quick peek at Levy’s character who appears with a thin mustache and formal wear (“You’re all in for a treat,” he says); Curtis appears with her head in a crystal ball; and Minhaj pops up working in a police department opposite DeVito and Stanfield as he produces a sketch of a spooky suspect.
Katie Dippold (Ghostbusters 2016) penned the script. Producers are Dan Lin and Jonathan Eirich with executive producers Nick Reynolds. Disney previously mined the attraction for the big screen 20 years ago with an Eddie Murphy-starring vehicle.
CinemaCon, the convention of National Association of Theatre Owners, is being held inside Caesars Palace in Las Vegas through April 27.
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