Saturday, August 9, 2014

Haunted Mansion Week, Day 7: 45th Anniversary

Well Specters, the 45th Anniversary of Disney's Haunted Mansion is here at last! On this day, in 1969, the grandfather of the haunted attraction industry opened it's doors to the public, and history would never be the same. I sometimes wonder if the Imagineers who created the Mansion had any idea what they were unleashing into the world? If they knew what they created would be the beginning of a new industry, and (for many people) a way of life? Granted, the Mansion isn't sole responsible for the rise of haunted attractions (Coney Island and Knott's Scary Farm deserve some of the credit) but it certainly accelerated things, and changed the way haunts were thought of. No more black walls and cheap rubber masks - haunts could now be living, breathing works of Art. To me, that is the legacy of the Haunted Mansion, and why I celebrate it.

For our final entry in Haunted Mansion Week, I though it appropriate to celebrate the people who have kept the Mansion alive (undead?) for so long: the fans. It is they who gave the Mansion it's status, who cemented it's legacy, and who made sure that the Mansion, unlike other Disneyland attractions, is still alive and well 45 years after it opened. There is the most obvious fan tribute, the excellent and always informative website, but there is so much more. There are fan films:
There are makeup tutorials:
And of course, there are Haunts based on the Mansion:
One man even lives in his own private Haunted Mansion!
If one thing can be concluded from all this: Disney's Haunted Mansion is here to stay!

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