One of the LEGO Group’s August releases is a tiny model of the Haunted Mansion ride at Disneyland. 40521 Mini Disney The Haunted Mansion was revealed at the start of July, offering the distinctive architecture of the building. It also includes an exclusive butler minifigure, who has some interesting connections to other LEGO sets.
However, the mansion is unusual in that it comes before a larger-scaled version of the subject matter. Another similar set – 40478 Mini Disney Castle – is essentially a shrunk-down version of 71040 The Disney Castle, a popular and long-lived entry in the LEGO Disney range. However, the big castle came out some time before the small one.
For some years now, the LEGO Group has been exploring certain subject matter at a variety of different scales. Back to the Future and Ghostbusters have seen their famous vehicles reproduced in both big and small LEGO versions. Elsewhere, an upcoming entry in the Speed Champions line includes a minifigure-scale Aston Martin – complete with an official James Bond minifigure. This follows a large-scale brick-built James Bond Aston Martin from a few years back.
Versions of the Haunted Mansion currently appear at five Disney amusement parks, although the actual form factor can vary due to cultural differences. That said, the oldest version of the attraction has been in operation for more than five decades at this point. This suggests that there’s a clear market for a set like this.
So what’s holding it back? The first roadblock might me that we currently have a LEGO haunted house attraction. 10273 Haunted House features a spooky attraction for LEGO minifigures, complete with a sinister elevator for them to ride. It’s also a treat for older LEGO fans thanks to a bevy of ’90s and ’00s references.
The second roadblock might be that it’s difficult to replicate the ‘ride’ aspect of the Haunted Mansion in LEGO form. Even with a high price point, a Haunted Mansion LEGO set would have a relatively small footprint. Creating a set with a suitable interior here would present a steep design challenge.
However, the Haunted Mansion has also appeared in some films before now – specifically, the Eddie Murphy comedy film from 2003, and the 2021 Disney+ Muppets special. Another Disney Haunted Mansion movie is due to be released in 2023. It’s possible that a new LEGO haunted house could draw from this kind of subject matter.