A Familiar Face Returns to Disneyland's Haunted Mansion

April 12, 2021, 4:13 PM · When Disneyland announced its April 30 reopening last month, it promised some "new magic" coming to the Haunted Mansion. Today, the park revealed just what that new magic will be.

Outside the New Orleans Square landmark, visitors will find fresh landscaping the pet cemetery, while inside, Disney has refurbished the portrait gallery between the stretch rooms and the doom buggy loading area, where the "April to December" portrait has returned after a 16-year absence. Here's an overview of the enhancements:

Required advance reservations opened today for current Disneyland ticket holders and reservations will open for all when new ticket sales resume on Thursday. If you are looking for the link to make park reservations at Disneyland and Disney California Adventure, here it is. Remember that park capacity is limited and open only to California residents at this time. We've got everything you need to know about making Disneyland reservations in our article from last week: Disneyland Announces Ticket Prices and Calendar.

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Replies (11)

April 12, 2021 at 4:37 PM

I hope the ride portion has some updates as well.

April 12, 2021 at 6:14 PM

Just watching that make me so filled with joy that I dare say I'll probably cry when I finally get back in there. You know things are gonna be okay when Disneyland is open again.

April 12, 2021 at 7:11 PM

How will they be managing the stretching room sequence? I know it's an elevator so it can't exactly be bypassed like WDW's version, but surely keeping people socially distanced is going to mean a small handful of guests at a time and long wait times.

April 12, 2021 at 7:23 PM

Is the attraction better at Disneyland vs World - never been impressed with the World version ride seems like a big update would help

April 12, 2021 at 9:31 PM

I think most people consider the WDW to be best. It has a number of enhancements, and the hitchhiking ghosts are neat. My preference is the DL version though. A longer walk through section, and the attic works better for me. And the hatbox ghost. One thing I will not do is go during the overlay. It just is not a Disney vacation without the classic HM.

April 13, 2021 at 5:29 AM

@Tiptop22 I personally prefer the "ride" portion at WDW, but I like Disneyland's exterior and queue better.

I'm excited for these updates -- but I live in Nevada, so it's either wait to see any other changes or live vicariously through YouTube videos as only California residents will be allowed for the time being.

April 13, 2021 at 10:45 AM

I'll go with WDW as better, especially after the great refurbishment it got some years back, better FX and such.

Still, like the old-school Disneyland feel and am amazed WDW never tried to the "Nightmare Before Christmas" overlay that looks great.

April 13, 2021 at 12:22 PM

I think they replaced the April through December portrait with Master Gracey, which was IMO not as good, so I'm glad she's back.

April 13, 2021 at 12:52 PM

@Mike, I wonder if it is simply because of the crowds / demographic at WDW vs DLR.

The overlays take time & I thought I read or heard somewhere that they played into the decision not to do a yearly overlay??

Does MK do any seasonal overlays?? Space Mountain, IASW??

April 13, 2021 at 12:56 PM

@Jay R:
I know they do the Jingle Cruise overlay and also the Santa Claus Highway to Hell Tower of Terror overlay but that’s all I can think of. Okay maybe not the second one, but hey, never too late right?

April 14, 2021 at 12:59 PM

If anyone wants to see what the Haunted Mansion Holiday overlay would look on the Magic Kingdom's version, book a trip to Tokyo Disneyland (when you can again). It's amazing.

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