Earlier this month, I asked our followers if anyone had ever seen any real ghosts inside The Haunted Mansion. What seemed to be an innocent question began two weeks of speculation, ghost stories, and a bit of online tomfoolery that eventually culminated in the release of a video I claimed would offer a glimpse at said ghosts, posted just in time for Halloween.
But now the tricks are over and it’s time for the treat. It was all a viral campaign cooked up by myself and the Daws brothers, Jeremiah and Josh, who wrote and directed the short film entitled “Missing in the Mansion.” Yes, it was all “fake,” but that doesn’t mean it is any less entertaining.
“Missing in the Mansion” has been in the works for several months, since the Daws brothers first came up with the idea to set a truly scary story inside The Haunted Mansion at Disneyland, normally known for its happy haunts and playful spooks. Based on Mansion lore, Jeremiah and Josh, along with Reza Lackey, created a story that followed a trio of Disney fans on a particularly paranormal trip through the attraction that doesn’t end well. Along the way, I was brought on as associate producer, ensuring the short film would feel right to the biggest of Mansion fans - of which I am one.
With a fairly meager budget and help from talented makeup and visual effects artists, the Daws brothers created “Missing in the Mansion” as a Halloween time adventure that’s slightly more on the adult side than an average ride on The Haunted Mansion. And most importantly, it offers fans a look at one of the attraction’s most infamous ghosts in a whole new way.
The short has been well received since its midday debut on Monday, gathering nearly 40,000 views in less than 48 hours, picked up by a number of major blogs and web sites. The viral campaign, it seems, was rather successful. But today, on Halloween, I am providing an opportunity to take a fresh look at “Missing in the Mansion,” not from an “Is it real?” perspective, but rather simply as a little fiendish fun.
Missing in the Mansion
While that’s the real story, it’s not the whole story. I’ll soon be sharing a behind-the-scenes look at the elaborate production that went into creating this short film, including an interview with its directors. So keep checking back here for more “Missing in the Mansion”! And if you enjoyed it, please pass it along to your friends and family, or anyone else you might want to give a good scare to on this spookiest of holidays.