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Mickey's Madhouse information?

Dr. Hans Reinhardt

Well-Known Member
@mharrington The feature that always intrigued me most about the Discovery Bay/Circusland model was the often overlooked aerial balloon ride that linked the two lands, which is visible at the top of the image you shared. I'd be very interested in seeing any concept art or reading detailed information on that attraction.
 
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mharrington

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
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I found some more pieces of artwork allegedly for Mickey's Madhouse (if its article on the Disney Wiki is to be believed). Here are two interior shots:



And here's a vignette pertaining to "Steamboat Willie":


So how then would a movie studio fit in what is otherwise a circus?
 

Phrubruh

Well-Known Member
I found some more pieces of artwork allegedly for Mickey's Madhouse (if its article on the Disney Wiki is to be believed). Here are two interior shots:



And here's a vignette pertaining to "Steamboat Willie":


So how then would a movie studio fit in what is otherwise a circus?
How does a movie studio fit in the circus that DCA has become?
 

Herbie

Well-Known Member
I think the Studio Tour and Madhouse rides are different concepts...

I would have no problem with this being added to Storybook Circus. It's somewhat of a loose theme, but it definitely fits into the image I have of old timey circuses/carnivals featuring these "madhouse" style (and sometimes cheap) rides. See Ed Wood for example. And keep in mind, Pinocchio's Daring Journey was originally planned to go here as well.
 

mharrington

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
I think the Studio Tour and Madhouse rides are different concepts...

I would have no problem with this being added to Storybook Circus. It's somewhat of a loose theme, but it definitely fits into the image I have of old timey circuses/carnivals featuring these "madhouse" style (and sometimes cheap) rides. See Ed Wood for example. And keep in mind, Pinocchio's Daring Journey was originally planned to go here as well.
My question, though, is how would it have fit? I had tried to conjure up a ride like that for Storybook Circus, but @spacemt354 insisted that the ride needs to be based around the circus first. The "Madhouse" concept as envisioned originally, it was argued, would probably work in, say, Toontown or something, but not in a circus. When I brought up the concept, they tried to conform the concept as tightly as possible to the circus, because shorts vignettes, again, didn't seem to fit.

And to go off-topic briefly, I also I think Pinocchio probably fits better where it does now, right in the heart of Fantasyland. It makes me wonder if you were going to view the ride from his perspective back then, like you did with the other dark rides at the time.

Also, to get back on topic, what is the reference to "Ed Wood" here? I thought that was about a guy trying to make B-movies, not a "madhouse" attraction for a circus.
 

Herbie

Well-Known Member
My question, though, is how would it have fit? I had tried to conjure up a ride like that for Storybook Circus, but @spacemt354 insisted that the ride needs to be based around the circus first. The "Madhouse" concept as envisioned originally, it was argued, would probably work in, say, Toontown or something, but not in a circus. When I brought up the concept, they tried to conform the concept as tightly as possible to the circus, because shorts vignettes, again, didn't seem to fit.

And to go off-topic briefly, I also I think Pinocchio probably fits better where it does now, right in the heart of Fantasyland. It makes me wonder if you were going to view the ride from his perspective back then, like you did with the other dark rides at the time.

Also, to get back on topic, what is the reference to "Ed Wood" here? I thought that was about a guy trying to make B-movies, not a "madhouse" attraction for a circus.
I’m kind of a stickler for theme when it comes to Epcot and Hollywood being invaded upon… but in this scenario, I think liberties can be taken. Not every single ride has to be themed to the circus – something that exudes the old timey-ness of Dumbo + that era should be more than sufficient.

Pinocchio was probably considered a good fit because of the Pleasure Island carnival connection – as well as the fact that Pinocchio is a classic wooden puppet, subject to performance shows – like, at say, a circus/carnival/fair. It’s a loose connection, but it works. The visuals (along with the visuals of old-timey Mickey cartoons) just lends itself to the area.

Ed Wood was a filmmaker in the 1950s who made really bad movies… In Tim Burton’s 1994 film, one scene features Ed Wood (Johnny Depp) and his date (Patricia Arquette) attending a fair/carnival of sorts where they ride a relatively cheap haunted house dark ride (typical of that era). Mickey’s Madhouse would seem to fall in line with that idea (but on a grander, Disney-scale, of course).

I'd be all for a Roger Rabbit's Hollywood/Maroon Studios area in DHS -- but not Toontown. Hate that theme with a passion. Represent it in an attraction -- a Toontown Trolley simulator, for example -- all you want, but as a land, I think it's just small and cheap and more of an eyesore than charming. Even if I liked the theme, Mickey's Toontown has always seemed more '80s/Disney Afternoon to me than classic Mickey shorts.
 

Rich T

Well-Known Member
...I'd be all for a Roger Rabbit's Hollywood/Maroon Studios area in DHS -- but not Toontown. Hate that theme with a passion. Represent it in an attraction -- a Toontown Trolley simulator, for example -- all you want, but as a land, I think it's just small and cheap and more of an eyesore than charming. Even if I liked the theme, Mickey's Toontown has always seemed more '80s/Disney Afternoon to me than classic Mickey shorts.
I loved Toontown the first few years it was open, but...yeah... it's time has come and gone, especially since, as others have pointed out, Mickey and crew in all their short film or comic strip history never lived in any kind of place that looked anything like Toontown.
 

mharrington

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
I’m kind of a stickler for theme when it comes to Epcot and Hollywood being invaded upon… but in this scenario, I think liberties can be taken. Not every single ride has to be themed to the circus – something that exudes the old timey-ness of Dumbo + that era should be more than sufficient.
Well, @spacemt354 would be inclined to disagree, though, to be fair, my concept was to be called "Mickey's Fun House", not "Mad House". I changed the name because I didn't think "mad" seemed to fit with Mickey. I threw in several random vignettes based around various cartoons (i.e., giant inanimate objects (a la "Thru the Mirror"), a car-based room themed (loosely) around "Mickey's Service Station", etc.), but s/he (I don't know) insisted that...

[T]hese scenes and plot lines are an entirely different attraction than something that would be seen in a circus setting and set within a Fun House -- as [...] the title of this thread suggests.

[...]

None of these scenes are related and are vignettes of classic Mickey shorts. This reminds me more of The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh, which takes several different Pooh stories and blends them into one attraction.

That type of dynamic is completely fine for an attraction, but not for placement in Storybook Circus, which is specifically themed around....the circus setting.

The attraction you are now requesting, would fit better in a Toontown setting, rather than Storybook Circus.


My take on this thing is that this old "madhouse" concept could work as envisioned in the '70s if I only had enough information, but I don't, so it was proposed to just do a new ride from scratch, rather than recycle an old concept. Even the new images that I found recently don't really add much.

Ed Wood was a filmmaker in the 1950s who made really bad movies… In Tim Burton’s 1994 film, one scene features Ed Wood (Johnny Depp) and his date (Patricia Arquette) attending a fair/carnival of sorts where they ride a relatively cheap haunted house dark ride (typical of that era). Mickey’s Madhouse would seem to fall in line with that idea (but on a grander, Disney-scale, of course).
Okay. I've never seen "Ed Wood" myself, so that's why I asked. I even tried to do a YouTube search for the fair/carnival scene in question, but I couldn't really find anything.

I'd be all for a Roger Rabbit's Hollywood/Maroon Studios area in DHS -- but not Toontown. Hate that theme with a passion. Represent it in an attraction -- a Toontown Trolley simulator, for example -- all you want, but as a land, I think it's just small and cheap and more of an eyesore than charming. Even if I liked the theme, Mickey's Toontown has always seemed more '80s/Disney Afternoon to me than classic Mickey shorts.
I loved Toontown the first few years it was open, but...yeah... it's time has come and gone, especially since, as others have pointed out, Mickey and crew in all their short film or comic strip history never lived in any kind of place that looked anything like Toontown.
I happen to like Toontown. I think it's good. And especially considering the rumors of the Runaway Railway ride from WDW being added to Toontown, it could tie in somewhat, since I kind of thought that some of the cartoons (the 2010s cartoons anyway) already have a kind of Toontown vibe to them anyway.
 

Herbie

Well-Known Member
Well, @spacemt354 would be inclined to disagree, though, to be fair, my concept was to be called "Mickey's Fun House", not "Mad House". I changed the name because I didn't think "mad" seemed to fit with Mickey. I threw in several random vignettes based around various cartoons (i.e., giant inanimate objects (a la "Thru the Mirror"), a car-based room themed (loosely) around "Mickey's Service Station", etc.), but s/he (I don't know) insisted that...

[T]hese scenes and plot lines are an entirely different attraction than something that would be seen in a circus setting and set within a Fun House -- as [...] the title of this thread suggests.

[...]

None of these scenes are related and are vignettes of classic Mickey shorts. This reminds me more of The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh, which takes several different Pooh stories and blends them into one attraction.

That type of dynamic is completely fine for an attraction, but not for placement in Storybook Circus, which is specifically themed around....the circus setting.

The attraction you are now requesting, would fit better in a Toontown setting, rather than Storybook Circus.


My take on this thing is that this old "madhouse" concept could work as envisioned in the '70s if I only had enough information, but I don't, so it was proposed to just do a new ride from scratch, rather than recycle an old concept. Even the new images that I found recently don't really add much.



Okay. I've never seen "Ed Wood" myself, so that's why I asked. I even tried to do a YouTube search for the fair/carnival scene in question, but I couldn't really find anything.





I happen to like Toontown. I think it's good. And especially considering the rumors of the Runaway Railway ride from WDW being added to Toontown, it could tie in somewhat, since I kind of thought that some of the cartoons (the 2010s cartoons anyway) already have a kind of Toontown vibe to them anyway.
I haven't seen enough of the shorts, but the style and tone is so different from my image of Toontown. Toontown is very 80s, Runaway Railway is very current, and classic Mickey is very... classic. I don't know. I can easily see why Imagineers initially wanted to place Pinocchio within the Disneyland version of Storybook Circus (Stromboli's Wagon selling popcorn, anyone?)... With that in mind, I can also see Mickey's Madhouse being placed there as well, utilizing some of the more appropriate, darker shorts... As well as some of the classics.
 

mharrington

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
I haven't seen enough of the shorts, but [...] I can also see Mickey's Madhouse being placed there as well, utilizing some of the more appropriate, darker shorts... As well as some of the classics.
Do you know of some examples of these shorts? The few you know, anyway?

The other challenge of doing this ride was that I had no idea what the storyline was about, based on the lack of information. The Pinocchio ride at least is derivative of another, single source, but the shorts are multiple sources.
 
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