20 Haunted Mansion Easter Eggs & Disney Ride References


Warning: Beware, foolish mortals, this article contains spoilers for Haunted Mansion!




  • The Haunted Mansion movie pays homage to the beloved Disney ride with Easter eggs and references, including iconic characters like the Hatbox Ghost and Madame Leota.
  • The film recreates key elements from the ride, such as the Stretching Room, the Hitchhiking Ghosts, and the iconic purple wallpaper, adding to the nostalgia for Disney fans.
  • The movie incorporates familiar Haunted Mansion music, like the haunting melody of “Grim Grinning Ghosts,” to set the eerie tone and maintain the essence of the beloved attraction.

Foolish mortals will be happy to know that Haunted Mansion is full of Easter eggs and Disney ride references for the popular theme park attraction. When Gabbie (Rosario Dawson) and her son Travis (Chase Dillon) move into a stately mansion outside New Orleans, they have no idea that it’s haunted by a group of ghoulish ghosts. Eventually, they have no choice but to hire a group of spiritual experts including a priest (Owen Wilson), a medium Harriet (Tiffany Haddish), a history professor (Danny DeVito), and a former astrophysicist (LaKeith Stanfield) to purge their home of unwanted spectral squatters.

When the Dream Team of humans proves no match for the Hatbox Ghost and his gang, they enlist Madame Leota (Jamie Lee Curtis), who joins the Haunted Mansion cast of characters as both a supporting player and a ride reference in her own right. She becomes their spirit guide on a supernatural journey to save their souls from being tied to the mansion forever, as well as the ones already bound to it by the curse of Alistair Crump. Disney fans will enjoy spotting all the ways director Justin Simien and his team have made a loving tribute to one of the park’s most popular rides.

20 Hatbox Ghost On Gabbie’s Uhaul

The Hatbox Ghost in The Haunted Mansion Looking Creepy.

When Gabbie and Travis leave New Orleans to drive towards the — unbeknownst to them — Haunted Mansion, they drive a Uhaul moving truck with a spooky SuperGraphic on the side. Most Uhaul trucks have images on them that represent every U.S. state, with some trailers displaying ones that honor individual cities, and the SuperGraphic on the side of Gabbie and Travis’s Uhaul is the Hatbox Ghost in a grim foreshadowing of the main antagonist of the film. The Hatbox Ghost’s real identity will play a key part in solving the mystery of the Haunted Mansion.

19 Moving Suit Of Armor & Floating Candelabra

haunted mansion comparison

When Gabbie and Travis first arrive at the imposing-looking mansion and start to look around, Travis is followed by a moving suit of armor, and he sees a candelabra floating of its own accord down a long hallway that seems to stretch forever. At first, Gabbie doesn’t believe him when he says the place is haunted, but soon the suit of armor chases them down the front steps. The suit of armor can be seen soon after boarding the Haunted Mansion ride, and next to it, the candelabra and endless hallway.

18 The Ghost Host


The Ghost Host is not only the narrator of the Haunted Mansion ride but is featured in the attraction as a portrait with a hatchet in his hand, a noose around his neck, and a bulging eye. The Ghost Host appears with his hatchet and bulging eye as an apparition throughout the 2023 film as he chases Ben from room to room. In the second half, he even tries to possess him but thanks to Harriet he isn’t successful.

17 The Stretching Room

Travis screaming in Haunted Mansion

When Ben and Travis try to escape the mansion they get trapped in a room that will be very familiar to fans of the Haunted Mansion ride as the first room they enter to begin the attraction. As the Ghost Host narrates that there are “no windows and no doors,” the ceiling stretches higher and higher and the portraits elongate as well, revealing their subjects in terrifying situations, such as a woman on a tightrope over water filled with alligators. As the paintings come to life and try to grab Ben and Travis, they spot the Ghost Host in a hidden room and follow him to escape.

16 The Bride/Constance Hatchaway


The Bride has been a part of the attic scene in the Haunted Mansion ride since it opened in 1969, later given the name Constance Hatchaway and a grisly backstory involving her penchant for beheading her husbands. When Ben moves passes old photographs of Constance and her husbands in the attic, their heads slowly disappear to represent their grim ends. She reappears throughout the film in other areas hurtling axes, but eventually has a change of heart after Father Kent’s impassioned speech about redemption.

15 William Gracey


Hardcore fans of the Haunted Mansion ride will recognize the character Master Gracey (or Captain Blood according to a tale from the Ghost Host), who becomes the new owner of the estate following the death of Alistair Crump. In Disney lore, the Haunted Mansion’s real name is Gracey Manor, so named for crates of paraphernalia bearing the Gracey name found near the attraction. Though he’s one of the ghosts haunting the mansion when Gabbie and Travis move in, he’s not a malevolent spirit and only hopes to one day be at rest.

14 Marvel Heroes

chadwick boseman as t'challa in black panther

Travis can be seen playing with a number of action figures early in the film all representing BIPOC superheroes. Since Disney acquired Marvel Studios, it’s been responsible for releasing several high-profile films like Black Panther and Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, so it’s not surprising to see Travis with these toys. The only one not recognizable as a hero of the MCU is the one Ben tells him about from his childhood, whose weapon of choice is a shoe.

13 Madame Leota’s Spellbook


Madame Leota is both a Haunted Mansion ride reference and a supporting character in the film, and her Spellbook is essential in stopping the Hatbox Ghost from obtaining his 1000th soul. Together with Harriet, Madame Leota is able to identify him as Alistair Crump, which makes him susceptible to her banishment spell. Her book of enchantments is normally used in the Séance Room in the ride to invite ghosts to gather in the mansion, not expel them.

12 Hitchhiking Ghosts


As the Haunted Mansion ride ends, visitors pass in front of mirrors that reveal several unwanted passengers hitching a ride in their Doom Buggies. Traditionally, they’re depicted as three hitchhiking ghosts looking for a way out of the mansion, and the trio is seen looking to get a ride with Ben as he passes through the spirit realm. Several spirits hitch rides with Gabbie, Ben, Father Kent, and anyone who tries to leave the mansion before solving the mystery of Alistair Crump.

RELATED: Disney Only Has 2 Movies Based On Rides That Have Earned Fresh Ratings On Rotten Tomatoes

11 Moving Portraits


Elsewhere, throughout the mansion, portraits on the wall depict various residents (now deceased) who seem to move beyond the confines of their frames. Fans of the Haunted Mansion ride will be able to spot the werecat and the mariner, the latter of which features in a prominent storyline haunting Ben. The dueling men can be seen leaping free from their portraits at midnight and shooting each other.

10 Shifting Busts


In the movie, Gabbie tells Ben that when she walks past busts in the main hallway, two busts turn their heads. While they’re not seen doing this in the film, the hallway is lined with the same “ugly busts” from the Haunted Mansion ride that appear just before riders board their Doom Buggy. As riders pass, tricks of the light make the busts seem to move their heads to creepily watch them.

9 13-Hour Clock


When Ben finds himself in the spirit realm, he encounters a grandfather clock with 13 hours on it. This is the same clock that greets riders before they enter Madame Leota’s Séance Room and chimes 13 times. When riders experience lags during the ride, wait times are given in 13-minute intervals.

8 Iconic Haunted Mansion Purple Wallpaper


It wouldn’t be a Haunted Mansion movie if it didn’t include the iconic wallpaper from the ride. The wallpaper can be glimpsed throughout the mansion in the film, lining hallways and staircases with its deep purple hue. In many Disney parks throughout the world, the Haunted Mansion wallpaper is featured on purses, backpacks, and dozens of other forms of merchandise.

7 The Rhyming Tombstones


While exploring Alistair Crump’s basement and attempting to find his severed head, Travis stumbles upon a series of tombstones featuring rhyming epitaphs. These greet visitors in line as they wait to board the ride. Many feature the names of Disney Imagineers who built the ride, including Yale Gracey, whose gravestone reads “Master Gracey laid to rest. No mourning please, at his request. Farewell.

6 Doom Buggy Chair


Doom buggies are the main method of transportation in the Haunted Mansion ride, and the film attempts to recreate the experience of sitting in the swiveling seats as they glide through the house. After Harriet sits in the Séance Room to communicate with certain spirits, they push her out of the room, down the hallway, and down the front steps. This mimics the feeling of the ride and attempts to reconcile the illogical nature of a buggy of any kind moving around indoors.

5 Bat Stanchions


Bat stanchions are a familiar sight all around the Haunted Mansion ride blocking off parts that are off-limits to guests. Bat stanchions can be seen at Crump Manor when Travis and Ben arrive to look for clues about the Hatbox Ghost’s identity. The most prominent one keeps nosy guests away from the fireplace.

4 Vic Performing “It’s A Small World After All”


As Travis and Ben leave Crump Manor, they walk past the salon where Vic, the over-the-top tour guide played to perfection in a cameo by Dan Levy, is entertaining guests at the piano. He plays a version of “It’s A Small World After All” from the iconic Disney water ride and no, he’s quick to quip to the tourists gathered around him, they may not sing along. If Haunted Mansion gets a sequel, Vic needs a much larger role.

3 Haunted Mansion Ride Ghosts

LaKeith Stanfield's Ben Matthias for Haunted Mansion 2023

Many of the attraction’s most famous ghosts and spirits make appearances in Haunted Mansion. The most notable spirits are the Hatbox Ghost, William Gracey, and Constance Hatchaway, but there are many more. The Viking opera singer, the mummy, the Roman emperor, the saloon dancers, and many more can be seen in the background of certain scenes as well as in a large group at the end of the film. The groundskeeper and his hound, often seen perplexedly wandering the graveyard around the Haunted Mansion ride, also make cameos.

RELATED: When Will Haunted Mansion Release On Disney Plus?

2 Dancing Ghosts Ballroom Scene


At the end of Haunted Mansion Alistair Crump is banished and the ghosts, who have never been able to be at peace under his reign of tower, decide to stick around. They live in harmony with mortals Gabbie and Travis and are visited by Harriet, Ben, and Father Kent, who have now all become quite accustomed to the sight of specters. They celebrate by waltzing in the ballroom, recreating one of the most beautiful scenes in the ride achieved through hologram technology.

1 “Grim Grinning Ghosts”

haunted mansion ghosts afterlife

The first few notes of this familiar ditty are played ominously on a massive organ throughout Haunted Mansion, along with other chilling music from the ride that sets the right spooky tone. The song doesn’t really get going until the ghosts come out to socialize in the grand ballroom, celebrating their freedom from Alistair Crump. “Grim Grinning Ghosts” is one of the most recognizable elements in the Haunted Mansion ride, and it wouldn’t be the same if the toe-tapping song wasn’t in the Haunted Mansion movie.