Where was Constance originally?"Planned" is a funny word . . . The Hatboxes that were installed alongside Constance could be seen simply as a nod to the infamous character that used to share that scene, rather than any sort of meaningful indication that he would be returning. Clearly he did, in the end, but correlation does not equal causation. There wasn't really any guarantee he was coming for the better part of a decade.
There had been a behind the scenes push for the return of The Hatbox Ghost from around the prep stage of Disneyland's 50th anniversary, but it never gained sufficient support to move money behind it. Meanwhile Constance moved into the attic not long after . . . but as I think is clear from the difference in their finished product, Constance and the eventual Hatbox Ghost had some different people devising their illusions. So it's more like Team A set the ball hoping some Team B would be able to spike it down the line. And thankfully they did.
I understand there were a couple real attempts at prototyping a figure between 2008 and his eventual return in 2015, if not also sooner, so things had been simmering for a while. More than once he came really close to happening before things fizzled. Guillermo Del Toro even set the plan for his unproduced Haunted Mansion movie to feature the HBG as either a or the main character, which would likely have all but secured his return to the ride had that movie been made and done well. So clearly there were people gunning for it to happen.
Ultimately I think it helped that the character proved to be merchandisable for nearly a decade. By the time they had a prototype that was a strong enough illusion it could be viewed upclose (and not somewhere hidden in the distance of the Graveyard or Ballroom, as had been considered) they were also in need of fun little plussings to tout as part of Disneyland's Diamond Celebration. So it was decided to go for it - but it had to be outside the attic rather than in, because, ironically, the means of achieving Constance filled the attic with too much ambient light for him to look right in his old spot. Which is funny both because the Constance team wanted an eventual HBG return, but also because that's very nearly the same issue that caused The Hatbox Ghost to be removed from the ride in the first place.
I've heard a few times now that The Hatbox Ghost at WDW may not appear in the same spot he does at Disneyland, which I haven't been able to confirm but is interesting to consider. Personally I'd love to see them give the whole attic another pass, put him in his old spot, put a new, creepy, non-Constance Bride in her original spot, and just do it up that way. But Constance also moves merchandise now, and as the trailer shows both characters are going to be in the new movie, so I'm sure they'll both be sticking around.
Well, before Constance the very first Attic Bride at Disneyland (Who was simply called "Beating Heart") was tucked away in the corner on the left side of the ride track, right by the bend where the Doombuggies make that hard right turn - today that spot is basically between the 2nd and 3rd Husband Portraits you see in the Attic (Frank and Reginald). This photo is from Disney World's Attic, not Disneyland's, but you can imagine the first Bride would have been basically right in front of that Tapestry:Where was Constance originally?
Thank you!! This is fantasticWell, before Constance the very first Attic Bride at Disneyland (Who was simply called "Beating Heart") was tucked away in the corner on the left side of the ride track, right by the bend where the Doombuggies make that hard right turn - today that spot is basically between the 2nd and 3rd Husband Portraits you see in the Attic (Frank and Reginald). This photo is from Disney World's Attic, not Disneyland's, but you can imagine the first Bride would have been basically right in front of that Tapestry:
View attachment 711870
After The Hatbox Ghost was removed from the ride the Bride was moved to his spot by the exit so that the Attic still had some sort of finale element to it. But she was on the Right side of the track, not the Left where Constance is now. The Bride jumped from the right side of the track to the left in 2006 when Constance was added because they didn't want to close the ride for her install, so the Old Bride stayed in her spot on the right while they somewhat secretly installed the one on the Left.
Here's a Blueprint of the Attic with all the new/old Bride and Hatbox Ghost spots marked out. The new Hatbox Ghost's placement is just out of frame on the bottom, since they moved him onto the balcony overlooking the Graveyard instead of putting him back where he started:
View attachment 711871
Mind you, all this is Disneyland-centric - at Walt Disney World the Bride was always at the end of the Attic on the right side until 2007 when Constance was added, and she's always been in the same spot as DL's Constance at the end of the Attic on the left side of the track. Meanwhile, The Hatbox Ghost has never been installed at Walt Disney World . . . yet!
Isn't this just a fairly independent figure that could be added overnight?
Doesn't seem like something that would take closing the ride down to do
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