Two individuals are in a dark amusement park ride, sitting closely together and displaying expressions of surprise. The scene is dimly lit with a woven, circular frame partially visible in the foreground, suggesting the presence of hitchhiking ghosts adding to the eerie atmosphere.

RUMOR: Haunted Mansion Hanging Corpse to be Covered, Hitchhiking Ghosts Updated at Disneyland

Shannen Ace

The Haunted Mansion at Disneyland may reopen next year with updates both inside and out.

Haunted Mansion Hanging Corpse & Hitchhiking Ghosts

Haunted Mansion stretching room ceiling

The attraction is currently closed for construction of an expanded, reimagined queue and will reopen as Haunted Mansion Holiday this fall. When the standard attraction experience returns in 2025, the hanging corpse in the stretching room may be covered.

Disney has considered removing the hanging corpse from The Haunted Mansion for several years due to the sensitivity surrounding suicide. In 2023, almost all nooses were removed from Phantom Manor, the Disneyland Paris version of Haunted Mansion.

A few years ago, The Haunted Mansion at Disneyland was refurbished during its 16-month-long closure due to COVID-19. Imagineer Michele Hobbs managed the refurbishment and said removing the hanging corpse had “been discussed” and was “definitely something that we’re thinking about.”

According to our sources, Disney is still undecided about the hanging corpse. If you don’t recall the exact context of the scene, the corpse is implied to be that of the Ghost Host. In the stretching room, the disembodied voice welcomes guests to the mansion. He points out that there are no windows and no doors, leaving guests to find a way out. He then says, “Of course, there’s always my way.” The hanging corpse is then revealed by bolts of lightning through a scrim in the ceiling.

On Haunted Mansion Holiday, the ceiling is covered with a tarp and projections. Purportedly, the tarp may remain up for the standard version of the ride and something new will be projected.

Two individuals are in a Doom Buggy on the Haunted Mansion, sitting closely together and displaying expressions of surprise. The scene is dimly lit with a woven, circular frame partially visible in the foreground, suggesting the presence of hitchhiking ghosts adding to the eerie atmosphere.

The other major change likely coming to the ride is at the end. As previously rumored, The Hitchhiking Ghosts who appear in guests’ ride vehicles will potentially be updated to the same effect as the Walt Disney World version of the ride. Currently, the ghosts are projected into the Doom Buggies thanks to the Pepper’s ghost effect. In short, there are real audio-animatronics of the ghosts moving on the other side of the mirror and well-placed lights make their reflections appear. The same effect is used in the mansion’s ballroom.

In 2011, the Walt Disney World version of Haunted Mansion changed this effect to a CGI projection, so the ghosts’ reflections can now move all around the scene.

In addition, a new bride and new scene will also reportedly be added in the attic portion of the ride. Read more about the history of the Haunted Mansion Bride(s).

For Haunted Mansion Holiday at Disneyland, the Hitchhiking Ghosts are replaced with gifts from Oogie Boogie, but the Pepper’s ghost effect is the same. Watch our video of last year’s Haunted Mansion Holiday below.

These rumors are not confirmed and Disneyland’s plans can always change.

When Haunted Mansion Holiday reopens this year, it will use a virtual queue instead of standby while construction on the grounds continues.

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