2003 was a year in which Disney really wanted to create film franchises out of theme park rides. While one of the two released films (Pirates of the Carribean) would go on to do just that, Disney's comedic take on The Haunted Mansion didn't have the same success. Disney didn't totally toss in the towel on its attempts, either, as animator Shannon Tindle recently shared some work he'd completed on an unproduced Haunted Mansion animated show. The teaser clip is short, but it's enough to make us wish this project had happened.
For those thinking that voice sounds familiar, it belongs to black-ish actress Marsai Martain. In one of the pitched concepts for the animated TV version of The Haunted Mansion, Shannon Tindle told Cartoon Brew the audience would follow a central character throughout a bunch of different adventures with various characters, while also embracing a serialized element involving an overarching story about dealing with the loss of a loved one. Tindle stated on Twitter that he developed the project in 2015-2016, and that the TV concept had no connection to the Eddie Murphy-starring film.
Unfortunately, work on The Haunted Mansion TV project ended before it could even be decided whether or not it would be an ongoing or limited series, so there may not have been a ton of progress being made. Shannon Tindle, who is most known at this point for his writing and character work on Kubo And The Two Strings, received an outpouring of support for the project upon sharing the teaser on Twitter. The animator thanked fans for their words and indicated that he would be up for returning to the project should the renewed attention stir the ears of Disney executives. Tindle is not alone in offering to come back, either, as Marsai Martain herself also indicated she would be up for reprising her role as the young girl:
How soon could Shannon Tindle get back to work on The Haunted Mansion animation? Even in an ideal scenario in which Disney decided to bring it back in full force, it still might take a minute. Tindle made it clear to fans that he's hard at work on some top-secret projects, but as previously mentioned, he claims to be interested in making this project a reality yet again if the wheels are officially set in motion. With Disney only truly abandoning the project in 2016 or so, it's not out of the realm of possibility that the House of Mouse may be swayed to get in touch with Tindle and try to make a Haunted Mansion show happen for real.
Disney's feature The Haunted Mansion is currently available to stream on Netflix. For a look at more current stuff happening in the world of television, head on over to our midseason premiere guide. Those wishing to look back on the ghosts of 2017 can see the shows we lost via our cancellation guide, or check out The Cord Cutter Podcast's best of 2017 episode.