The Hatbox Ghost Returns

Great overview of the history of the hatbox ghost and review of the new version recently installed in Disneyland’s Haunted Mansion:

Suffice it to say that the trick involves scrim, a two-way mirror, clever misdirection, a basically simple mechanical gimmick, a “black art well,” and strategically placed lighting. In other words, we’re essentially back in front of a 19th century magic show, the main difference being that the rabbit popping in and out of the hat is a dummy rabbit with a modern, inner-projected face. The official Disney video for the debut of the new HBG refers to the use of “fundamental tricks and illusions” already pioneered by Yale Gracey. It’s already the case that guesses as to how it’s done generally make it more complicated than it is. In my book, that’s one of the signs of a good magic trick.