Guillermo del Toro Still Developing (and May Direct) Disney’s ‘Haunted Mansion’

Published 3 years ago by , Updated July 17th, 2013 at 11:00 am,

It’s no secret Guillermo del Toro has a strong affinity for ghoulish stories, which partially explains why he has passed on directing certain Marvel movies (Thor, The Wolverine) that were lacking in the area of creepy monsters. That affection for all things macabre and eery extends to Disney’s Haunted Mansion, accounting for the fan-favorite Mexican storyteller’s involvement with a new live-action take on the ride.

However, when the Mouse House recently pulled del Toro’s project from its official website – coupled with nothing in the way of recent news signaling progress – it left many people wondering: Has the filmmaker’s lack of availability (he’s currently overseeing post-production on Pacific Rim, and will co-direct the 3D stop-motion Pinocchio movie in the near future) inspired Disney to pull the plug on Haunted Mansion?

Fortunately, according to del Toro, the answer is no. As he informed Collider:

“I delivered my last ['Haunted Mansion' script draft] five weeks ago. I have a meeting with [Disney heads] in three weeks. I know they like the screenplay. I need to meet with them in three weeks. That’s what I know. I know their reaction to the draft was good. We have a bunch of conceptualist art, but you never know, to predict anything else is hard for me to know.”

Pacific Rim won’t be finished until (most likely) sometime in early 2013, while Pinocchio is already developing under the watchful eye of del Toro’s collaborator, Mark Gustafson. It’s worth mentioning that del Toro remains attached to write and direct a retelling of Beauty and the Beast (starring Harry Potter‘s Emma Watson) somewhere down the line – moreover, the filmmaker still yearns to finish off his planned Hellboy trilogy in the foreseeable future.

guillermo del toro haunted mansion Guillermo del Toro Still Developing (and May Direct) Disneys Haunted Mansion

Nonetheless, del Toro remains committed to Haunted Mansion, and speculates that Disney may be holding out to see if he directs the attraction-based film (in addition to writing and producing):

“I still would love to make that movie. I came on board originally as a writer and producer, the decision I think they may be waiting, is for me to say I’m directing the movie. Or am I directing it next, which is too early for me to know what I’m doing next in live-action. I’m in the middle of Pacific Rim and I don’t know what I’m going to do next.”

We learned this week that another del Toro-backed venture, a new Incredible Hulk television series, is waiting for an undisclosed writer to help revise the pilot script. If del Toro accepts helming duties on (at least) the first episode, that could remove his as a contestant to helm Haunted Mansion, similar to how David Slade recently vacated the Daredevil reboot director’s chair (to move ahead with the Hannibal TV series instead).

Stay tuned for additional status updates on Haunted Mansion in the forthcoming weeks.


Source: Collider [via /Film]

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  1. he´s involved in too many projects. right now -pacific rim- is one of my most anticipated movies ,and my biggest fear is that the monsters(at first himself introduced the kaiju-themed monsters,but then dropped back that the designs are not directly inspired from this genre) are too lovecratian like a renter mentioned before. i hope not, i realy want to see giant monsters and most of them walking on two feet like godzilla. please make it good,del toro.

    • “Renter”?

  2. Uum didnt they make this movie with Eddie murphy

    • My thought exactly!

  3. Guillermo del Toro making a Disney-movie is like Pixar making a hardcore splatter film.
    I can’t believe that, his visions are to disturbing and frightning for a Disney film, this isn’t supposed to work.

    • I mean, he’s not just about gore and blood. Besides, Sam Raimi just released Oz, and he’s the guy who made Evil Dead.

  4. Let me know when he actually does something again. This kid in a candy store routine is cute but it’s not productive.

  5. What a waste of a great talent.

    • I might be the only one, but I believe he is more overrated than “great”. Off the top of my head, I can’ think of anything that he has made that I either own or would want to watch repeatedly.

    • I also don’t know if he has actually won any Academy Awards yet. Is he good? Sure. Does he make movies that comic fans like? Yes. Is he great? I don’t think so.

      • I’m with Jeff.

      • “Pan’s Labyrinth” earned him a lot of brownie points and got him respect from people that would normally just written him off as a monster movie guy. However, his recent trend of having his finger in many pies that don’t end up being completed is bugging the fans.

        Just make “Hellboy 3″ dammit! (^-^)

      • Wait, so you’re not considered a somebody unless you win an Academy Award?

        But I’ve seen nobodies winning those that didn’t deserve them (like the massive haul Danny Boyle got that one year for what’s a pretty crappy movie and he hasn’t made a single movie I’d ever own or watch endlessly while some actors and directors who deserve awards get nothing….looking at you, Gary Oldman).

        • I know what you mean, Dazz, as Gary Oldman is a good example of someone with immense talent who, to date, has gone unrecognized by the Academy. Still, when I think of “great” directors, I think of people like Scorsese and Spielberg, and even Eastwood and Jackson, but not del Toro. He has talent, but not “great” talent. In my opinion, the only movies that he has made that were mildly amusing were Hellboy and Pan’s Labyrinth, but I would call neither “great”, nor would I choose to own or watch them repeatedly. Again, I am just saying that I think he is overrated, primarily by comic book fans.

  6. I’ve been looking forward to his take for a while now. Nay sayers say he is too intense but Pan’s Labrynth was dark but not to terribly scary. I hope he can find some time to direct it even though he has an incredibly full plate

  7. This may be one of the smartest moves Disney has done in a long time. Del toro has said ( sadly )that he would not direct, he would just be producer and writer. But hey I’ll take what I can get. Now Guillermo, go find a director who will call you master, so you can bring this monster to life, you mad man you. Stay true to the ride, and if you can, get Gary oldman to play the hatbox ghost. I already recommended him for another Disney film, but this one would cooler.

  8. I am so ready for a remake of the Eddie Murphy version which flopped big time! I say Del Toro produces and TIM BURTON DIRECTS!!!