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Rosario Dawson and LaKeith Stanfield Call ‘Haunted Mansion’ A Spiritual Experience



Exactly 20 years after Eddie Murphy’s “Haunted Mansion” hit theaters, Disney is breaking out a reboot.

The new movie follows a mourning paranormal expert named Ben (LaKeith Stanfield), who’s summoned to a spooky New Orleans estate to help a widow (Rosario Dawson) drive out ghosts.

The all-star film includes Tiffany Haddish as kooky medium Harriet, as well as Oscar winner Jamie Lee Curtis, playing a clairvoyant  named Madame Leota (a centerpiece o f the theme park ride). The movie is filled with jokes and callbacks that Disney superfans will appreciate, but also grapples with weightier themes of family and grief.

HipHollywood ventured to New Orleans to speak with the cast to talk about the film, their fear of ghosts and more.

“I’m not afraid of ghosts but I believe in them,” said Stanfield who called filming a ‘spiritual experience.’

“It was a fun set, but I feel like it was a spiritual experience for sure, for all of us. Just, like, coming together for this common goal and wanting to accomplish this cool thing and bring it to life,” he explained.

“I know for me for sure, I was kind of going through my own personal internal dialogue. And I think the character helped me bring that out and I helped bring it to the character. So there’s this symbiotic relationship there. It’s great.”

According to Dawson she manifested the role of Gabbie, a grieving widow and mom.

“I had just finished coming off of ‘DMZ’ and ‘Dopesick’ which I mean, talk about incredible storytelling,” she said. “But a lot of ugly crying and very intense subject matter. And I was like, I need a comedy. And then I got sent this and I honestly was blown away.”

“I felt similarly to Rosario,” said Stanfield. “I’d been doing some things that were just, like, really kind of tough spiritually to navigate tough characters and kind of wanted to do something that felt a little lighter.”

Thanks to folks like Owen Wilson who plays Father Kent, filming in New Orleans was nothing but fun and laughs.

“Owen kept disappearing, so that was really scary,” said Dawson. “We were like, oh, my God, he was right here.”

“He had a little bike and he was just always as soon as they say cut, it’s just like out,” adds Stanfield. “And then he’d come wheeling back up and then jump on set.”

“Haunted Mansion” is in theaters Friday.

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