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The Disneyland Report > Disneyland Commentary > 8/11 - Tokyo Disneyland gets Haunted Mansion Holiday winter 2004

Disney Commentary

8/11 - Tokyo Disneyland gets Haunted Mansion Holiday winter 2004

Haunted Mansion Holiday...

It was recently reported that Tokyo Disneyland is getting the Haunted Mansion Nightmare Before Christmas makeover this winter instead of the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World because WDW didn't want it. It's surprising that any park would give up their chance to have such an incredible marketing and merchandising opportunity at their park.

It's been quite clear for the last three years just how popular Haunted Mansion Holiday has been at Disneyland park. It was a huge hit the year it debuted, and it has been a continued hit each winter season, with locals returning to this attraction to see what's new each winter. Plus, since the holiday makeover is not available year-round, there is a more concentrated stream of guests visiting the attraction during the wintertime, bringing in more guests looking for something "new" during a time that is usually a bit slower for the parks. Disneyland's installation of holiday-specific attractions such as Haunted Mansion Holiday, it's a small world holiday, and Believe... In Holiday Magic has made the park a hit destination during the winter holiday season.

Tim Burton's Nightmare Before Christmas, with such unique characters as Jack Skellington, his trusty ghost dog Zero, Sally the rag doll, and the villainous Oogie Boogie, has become quite a cult hit, and its reception as part of the classic Haunted Mansion attraction at Disneyland has been exceptional.

Not only does merchandise related to this film fly off the shelves of Disneyland stores during the holiday season because of Haunted Mansion Holiday, but the attraction itself provides an opportunity for the park's merchandise department to put together an exclusive ticketed event each winter in which attendees can hear from a panel, be the first to experience Haunted Mansion Holiday that winter, and be able to purchase exclusive merchandise produced specifically for the event. That event must rake in tons of money for the park.

Thus, it is especially baffling that Walt Disney World reportedly did not want its own version of Haunted Mansion Holiday this winter, instead letting it go to Tokyo Disneyland in Japan. What a lost opportunity for the Florida resort. Who knows what the reasons were behind the decision to not have Haunted Mansion Holiday at the Magic Kingdom this year.

Perhaps the Walt Disney World budget is being overstretched a bit right now with construction of new attractions at each of its four theme parks. And it's true; with so many major attractions lined up in the next few years, the Walt Disney World Resort really doesn't need a headliner like Haunted Mansion Holiday right now. Maybe Tokyo Disneyland should get it after all.



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