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Guillermo del Toro speaks out at Comic-Con about developing THE HAUNTED MANSION! Plus an appearance by Cap'n Jack!

Ahoy, squirts! Quint here with another report from Comic-Con! Disney had two surprises waiting for us after the Tron goodies. One was a three minute or so hello from Mr. Jack Sparrow… Johnny Depp in full costume and character, talking to all us nerds “or whatever.” Jack was kicking back in a chair against a jungle setting, bottle of rum in his hand. He even said “As you may well know there are times when I prefer to look at the world through the bottle of a glass… rum… something like this!” and takes a chug. “You may have heard rumors and whispers that Jack Sparrow be recruiting a crew to undertake a voyage to the fountain of youth. Not true. ‘Course not. But even it weren’t not true, you wouldn’t be interested in joining, would you?” Audience cheered, then Jack began talking about the dangers to be found along the way. Mermaids, zombies, cut-throats and the vicious and vivacious Penelope Cruz. “That’s why I’m not going. No sir! It’s impossible to find the place anyway. Nobody knows where it is! Plus I’d have to have a bloody map… or a bloody Mary. Or both… That’s not a bad idea. Bloody Mary’s all around! It’s on the mouse!” It was a nice gesture, but seemed to get lost where Disney put it. People were already walking out after Tron when Patton was trying to quickly bring out Guillermo del Toro to announce that his next project is a reboot/what?therewasalreadyahauntedmansionmovie? of Disney’s THE HAUNTED MANSION.

Guillermo’s long been a fan of the ride. Me, too. I have very vivid memories of visiting Disneyland when I was knee-high and talking my parents into letting me go on the Haunted Mansion ride. “It’s not too scary!” “Are you sure? It looks pretty scary. I don’t know if you can handle it!” “I want to go!” I remember going into the first big room and feeling the nerves. A man lost his contact and everyone was down on their hands and knees helping him look for it when the stuff really started. When the room elongates and the lady hanged herself above our heads I started bawling. But I love that memory of being genuinely scared. It wasn’t safe. Everything past that first bit was fine. I was in awe of it, actually. I still don’t get how those goddamn hitchhiking ghosts appeared so perfectly in the mirror between my mom and me as our cart spun by it! That ride is a masterpiece of live illusion. While Guillermo didn’t say what his role in the film would be, he’s apparently said after he’s not locked in to direct, but he will definitely write and produce. It’s his baby.

- The film will be live action and in 3-D (there goes all the rumors that he ran from The Hobbit because of the 3-D talk). - Guillermo’s bound and determined to be true to the art and aesthetic of the Disney attraction. - Regarding the previous Disney movie version. “We are not returning Eddie Murphy’s phone calls!” - “It has to be the Haunted House movie that will be remembered for generations.” - The Hatbox Ghost will be the central character.

- It’s going to be a scary family film. “Kids will scream… but that’s a good thing!” I love the idea of doing family horror films. We had a few good ones when I grew up, the tops probably being the fantastically eerie and atmospheric SOMETHING WICKED THIS WAY COMES. So that’s the news! I’ll be back tomorrow with the good word on The Walking Dead panel and Sony’s Panel (their last chance at doing some Spidey-related as they did nothing at their BATTLE: LOS ANGELES and SALT panel) which features The Other Guys, Green Hornet and Priest. See ya’ then! -Quint Follow Me On Twitter

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