Imagineer Daniel Joseph, who worked on the Hatbox Ghost in The Haunted Mansion at Disneyland, is among the 2023 class of inductees for the Florida Inventors Hall of Fame.
Walt Disney Imagineering said on Instagram, “The Florida Inventors Hall of Fame announced that Disney Imagineer Daniel Joseph is among the 2023 class of inductees! Daniel’s been an inventor his whole life and holds more than 30 Disney patents. As a principal illusion integrator, he helps imagine, design and install all sorts of special effects and illusions for Disney experiences around the globe, including the beloved Hatbox Ghost in the Haunted Mansion at Disneyland Park… and soon to be at Haunted Mansion at Walt Disney World. For anyone who has worked alongside Daniel, this may come as no surprise. Join us in congratulating Daniel on this prestigious honor. We can’t wait to see what’s next!”
In 2006, Joseph won first prize in Walt Disney Imagineering’s ImagiNations Design Competition. His design was a retrofit for Disneyland’s PeopleMover, which closed in 1995. The next year, Joseph got an internship in the Research and Development Department of Imagineering.
Joseph also briefly acted as an attraction refresh consultant for Universal Studios Hollywood.
On his Instagram page, Joseph says, “I love to invent and create new things, We have the ability to make the world a better place and make people happy, even mystified through design!”
Upon finding out he was among the inductees, he wrote, “I still can’t believe the news I received today, that I would be one of the 10 people inducted into the 2023 Florida Inventors Hall of Fame! Wow, still in shock and never saw this coming. This organization is part of the University of South Florida and has inducted incredible inventors over the years, including nuclear physicists, Nasa engineers and even Thomas Edison, crazy!!!”
The Hatbox Ghost
The Hatbox Ghost was in the original Disneyland Haunted Mansion on opening day. Technology had not quite caught up to the ghost’s vanishing and appearing head, however, so the ghost only last a few weeks before disappearing for nearly 50 years.
The Hatbox Ghost returned to the Haunted Mansion at Disneyland in 2015. He appears at the end of the attic scene, after the Bride. Disney recently shared a video about the Hatbox Ghost’s history, teasing his future appearance in Magic Kingdom.
It’s unknown where the iconic ghost will be in the Magic Kingdom version of the attraction or when he will materialize. He’s scheduled to be added to the Haunted Mansion this year, likely in time for Halloween 2023 celebrations, which kick off in August.
Jared Leto portrays the Hatbox Ghost in the upcoming “Haunted Mansion” film directed by Justin Simien. The film follows a doctor (Rosario Dawson) and her 9-year-old son (Chase Dillon) moving into the Haunted Mansion in New Orleans. Dawson’s character ends up calling in a priest (Owen Wilson) to exorcise the mansion. They also get help from a widowed scientist-turned-failed-paranormal expert (LaKeith Stanfield), a French Quarter psychic (Tiffany Haddish), and a historian (Danny DeVito). Jamie Lee Curtis portrays Madame Leota.
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