Haunted Mansion…Dead On Arrival

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Credit: Disney

The new Haunted Mansion (2023) movie may become another flop from The Walt Disney Company. Although it hasn’t spawned the level of controversy associated with other films in the past 12 months, such as Lightyear (2022), Strange World (2022), or The Little Mermaid (2023), it will likely follow in the footsteps of a long life of recent box office failures.

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A Year of Flops

In addition to the titles above, additional box office bombs include Elemental (2023), Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania (2023), and Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny (2023). As long as audiences choose to avoid seeing Disney movies in the theaters, the studio will continue hemorrhaging money.

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Credit: Lucasfilm

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It was reported earlier this year that in the past 12 months, the Walt Disney Company was estimated to have lost almost $1 billion in box office flops. And that figure was before the release of Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny (2023), which in the end could lose another couple hundred million.

Box Office Numbers

Haunted Mansion Movie

Credit: Disney

Walt Disney Pictures hoped the Haunted Mansion (2023) would be a chance to turn things around. After all, it’s not a controversial live action remake, and it’s a movie based on a popular theme park ride at Disneyland (and the Magic Kingdom at Disney World). But its expected box office numbers for this weekend are $25-$30 million domestically. For comparison, Avengers: Endgame (2019) made $357 million on its opening weekend. Granted, that’s an established franchise, but those numbers are from four years ago. But when compared to The Haunted Mansion (2003) with Eddie Murphy, the opening box office is about the same ($24.3 million).

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Even though $30 million (at best) is still a nice chunk of change, it’s not a win when the movie allegedly cost the studio $150 million to produce. That figure also includes no marketing or promotional costs, which could easily be another $50-$100 million. Again, Disney seems to find itself where the costs of producing its movies ends up setting a bar too high for the box office. This was the problem with The Little Mermaid (2023), Lightyear (2022), and Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny (2023).


Credit: Disney/Pixar

Bad Reviews

Adding to the lukewarm box office numbers (which usually drop each week a movie is in theaters), the Haunted Mansion (2023) has received few positive reviews. Currently, it holds a critic score of 41% on Rotten Tomatoes (and it drops to 24% when filtered down to Top Critics).

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Credit: Disney

Audiences seem to enjoy the movie with a score of 83%. However, a favorable audience score alone may not be enough to dig the Haunted Mansion (2023) out of its 6′ hole.

RELATED: Haunted Mansion Leaves Critics Bored…to Death!

For those mortals (and Disney fans) interested in the new movie directed by Justin Simien, it’s in theaters this weekend and stars Tiffany Haddish, Rosario Dawson, Owen Wilson, Danny DeVito, Jamie Lee Curtis, Jared Leto, and Lakeith Stanfield.

haunted mansion 2023 ensemble cast owen wilson disney rosario dawson

Credit: Disney

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About Steven Wilk

Steven has a complicated relationship with Disney. As a child, he visited Walt Disney World every few years with his family. But he never understood why kids his age (and older) were so scared of Snow White or Alien Encounter. He is a former participant of the Disney College Program (left early…long story), and he also previously worked in Children’s publishing, where he adapted multiple Disney movies and TV shows. He has many controversial opinions about Disney…like having a positive view of Michael Eisner, believing Return of the Jedi is superior to The Empire Strikes Back, and that Toy Story Land and Galaxy’s Edge should have never been built (at least not at Hollywood Studios). Every year for the past two decades, Steven has visited either Walt Disney World, Disneyland, Aulani or went on a Disney Cruise. He’s happy to share any and all knowledge of the Disney destinations (and he likes using parenthesis a lot…as well as ellipses…)