In recent years, The Walt Disney Company has added a new dimension to its movie-making prowess, but the idea isn’t completely new.
Twenty years ago, Disney released the first Pirates of the Caribbean film starring Johnny Depp as the incomparable Captain Jack Sparrow. But the Disney Parks ride that inspired the film was the first attraction to inspire a Disney film, whereas rides in the parks are often inspired by a Disney film. The scurvy franchise includes five films so far, and fans are hopeful for a sixth one.
But lately, Disney has been making more movies inspired by rides in the parks, including The Jungle Cruise (2021) and a Haunted Mansion reboot (2023). For years, another film inspired by a guest-favorite Disney Parks attraction has been rumored to be among Disney’s plans, but there’s been little news about the project outside of the ride from which the film reportedly draws its inspiration and the name-dropping of a prominent female actress as the potential lead character in the film.
Now that the Hollywood strikes are over, that actress is free to discuss some of Disney’s possible plans for the film, and in a recent interview on Today, Scarlett Johansson finally revealed the current status of a new film inspired by the Tower of Terror attraction at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
“It’s based on the ride,” the actress explained. “Now that the writer’s strike is all over, we are finally able to dive back into polishing up this script. So it is a massive, huge undertaking. But I’m a huge Disney [fan]. I love the Disney parks.”
For more than two years, Johansson has been linked to the film that also draws inspiration from The Twilight Zone. According to the actress, she will be taking on the role of the star and the producer of the new film.
Johansson, known for her performance as Black Widow, is said to be teaming up with the director and co-writer of Toy Story 4, Josh Cooley, who is writing the script for the Tower of Terror-inspired flick. Taika Waititi, who directed Thor: Love and Thunder, is said to be taking on the role of director in the movie as well.
Drawing inspiration from Rod Serling’s timeless anthology series, ‘The Twilight Zone,’ the Tower of Terror [attraction] premiered at Disney’s Hollywood Studios in Walt Disney World in 1994. This immersive experience occurs in a simulated Hollywood Hotel Tower circa 1939, inviting guests to enter a maintenance service elevator following a lightning strike on the building.
With Serling’s distinctive voice serving as a guide, visitors embarked on a spine-chilling journey haunted by the ghosts of five mysteriously vanished passengers, ultimately leading to a hair-raising drop at a top speed of 39 miles per hour.
The film, inspired by the Tower of Terror attraction starring Scarlett Johansson, will be Disney’s second iteration of the film, as the studio previously developed a made-for-television film inspired by the attraction in 1997 that starred Kirsten Dunst and Steve Guttenberg and has been working on a Tower of Terror reboot for over eight years.
Specific details about the plot have not been shared yet, but it’s known that the Disney Parks attraction from which it draws its inspiration is an experience that centers around the story of a group of doomed hotel guests who board a hotel elevator car and are never seen again after a freak lightning storm strikes the Hollywood Tower Hotel.
Until more information is shared about the prospective film, Johansson fans will have to settle for re-watching the actress in her role as Black Widow.