Friends, a few days ago one of my good friends from the arcade was kind enough to send me a YouTube video from an artist known as Worthikids – revealing what looks to be lost footage for a stop-motion animated special for The Haunted Mansion. While this was actually all the hard work of Worthikids – Ian Worthington – who used the Blender open source graphics software, it gives us a glimpse at what a Rankin and Bass special for The Haunted Mansion might have looked like. Or at the very least we see how one of the 999 ghosts that call the Mansion their home would appear in said stop-motion special – in this case the iconic Hatbox Ghost.
I suppose we actually hear the Bride, or Constance Hatchaway as she is now known, off-screen as the Hatbox Troubles video begins. Ian Worthington really did a remarkable job with this piece of animation and I am going to go out on a limb to say he is a true fan of The Haunted Mansion – as the reason the Hatbox Ghost was removed after making his premiere in the dark ride attraction at Disneyland in ’69, was because the disappearing and reappearing head effect didn’t work properly. Something the poor Hatbox Ghost was having an issue with in Worthikids’ Hatbox Troubles, right?
Checking out both Ian Worthington’s spots on social media like Twitter and Instagram – he has produced quite a few amazing pieces of pop culture inspired animation. Say like with Frasier and Niles Become Demon Lords?
It might not surprise you that Adult Swim has taken notice of Worthington’s work – having apparently commissioned the artist to create some unique idents for their programming block. Case in point, another Rankin and Bass-themed animation – which I learned from the artist’s Twitter timeline that he was designed to look like the legendary Paul Frees (The Haunted Mansion, The Hobbit)!