Disneyland's Haunted Mansion Event - Part II
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Now, X ODay begins, you worked on Pirates of the Caribbean and we know Walt was very involved in the Pirates of the Caribbean. How involved was Walt in the Haunted Mansion? X. Atencio responds, he wasnt around much to see the finished product. He wasnt involved nearly as much as Pirates.
ODay continues, Now wasnt there some kind of big controversy about whether the Haunted Mansion should be really scary or should it be a funny show?
X. Atencio answers "Hench had worked with the Japanese type of scary things people without heads, eyes coming out the funny won out Some sketches of a one-eyed black cat who was going to be the host but that didnt work out. Then the raven was going to be the host and he was going through the ride but the mechanics didnt quite work. So when I wrote the script I did it tongue-in-cheek, the same way with the Grim Grinning Ghosts. These are ghosts that come out to socialize not to terror. Buddys music really continued with that same theme.
Turning to Buddy Baker, O'Day asks, "Buddy, what were your thoughts going into the music?"
Buddy explains, "My first thought was to make it a little spooky but tongue-in-cheek, not to make it too scary. So after I got Xs lyric and started working on it It was a device to tie the whole story together...To give you an example of the number of tracks we had, back in 1965 RCA came up with quadraphonic sound, thats double stereo. And I had to do a show for RCA in quadraphonic sound, four tracks. At the Studio I had 142 tracks synchronized for this Haunted Mansion alone They asked me at RCA, Do you think you can handle this four track? ..At one time there were 342 tracks In the graveyard sequence we had the greatest singers in the recording business. But I told them just a little bit nuts, dont sing it straight.
"How long did it take to put the song together, the score and all that?" Tim asks.
Buddy with a large smile replies, " Youre asking me to remember something from 30 years ago" He pauses for a moment glancing over at the other panelists and responds,2 to 3 months.