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Friday, August 31, 2007

The Hawthorne Village "Haunted House"

Hawthorne Village is known for producing little collectible trains, miniature Christmas villages, and miniature Halloween villages. So it wasn't a surprise that they would finally come up with a Disney-themed "Halloween Haunted House." What is surprising is that, apparently, they weren't granted the right to call it a "Haunted Mansion," even though it is clearly modeled after Walt Disney World's Haunted Mansion (and it even features tiny Mickey and Minnie Mouse characters riding though it in miniature Doom Buggies.)

We at DoomBuggies have been tracking this item since last winter, when someone found some sort of direct-mail advertisement advertising installment payment plans and pre-orders (the total cost of the sculpture is around $150). But the item itself never showed up on the Hawthorne Village web site or anywhere else until just recently. Interestingly, Hawthorne Village reps have at various times said it was created way back in 2004, and never released until 2006, although we haven't been able to find any cases of the product being released publicly until this year.

Regardless, DoomBuggies forum members are starting to receive their sculptures in the mail, and reports are that the item is quite nice, and a great value for the price. There are various light-up elements, and "spooky" sounds (though they are not from the actual Haunted Mansion.) As mentioned before, a chain of Doom Buggies circles through the door of the house, and all of the "Fab Five" (Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Pluto and Goofy) are represented on the piece somewhere.

Most interesting to fans is the fact that the images that appear in the lit-up windows of the Haunted House are images that were lifted straight from Each of the images used was retouched and corrected by DoomBuggies from the original in a way that makes it plain that the window pictures are one and the same as the web site images. We at DoomBuggies are pleased to have been of service to Hawthorne Village in the development of this piece - even having found out about it long after the fact.

For more information, click the image below to visit Hawthorne Village.