DIY Projected Heads Inspired By The Haunted Mansion

Halloween is the time for decking your house out in ghoulish decorations, and we are going to share a fun way to give your house a nice inexpensive DIY decoration inspired by the Haunted Mansion at Disneyland and the Magic Kingdom.

In the Haunted Mansion, one of the most iconic scenes is the statues of singing busts who perform Grim Grinning Ghosts in the graveyard finale of the ride. We are going to show you how to recreate the effect at home.

All you need for this is styrofoam heads, a projector, collums, and a video of the head you want to project. You can do this with a custom image and record it yourself against a black backdrop, or use a source video of the projected heads from the Haunted Mansion that can be found with a simple Youtube search.

I am going to describe the simplest version of the effect possible, although there is a lot more you can do to make it appear more impressive, such as adding hats and other decorative elements to the heads.

For the styrofoam heads, I would recommend using the female heads available at any craft store. Typically the faces are more smooth which makes the projections work better than the more crafted male heads.

Set up your location with a projector facing the four heads. The project does not have to be too fancy, a fairly basic one will do.

Place them on top of whatever you are using to display the heads. I recommend columns although this could be anything. I used CDs for my first test of the effect to get the placement right, and a properly placed table can work just as well. Collums work well because they are about the right height and allow you to more permanently connect the heads to them, but they can cost a bit.

Once you have the placement right, and this will take some trial and error with the projector running. I recommend marking the placement of the heads and projector in some way, like with tape, to ensure if they get moved you know where they should be.

Then you just turn on the effect.

There are a few additional things you can do to improve the look of the effect like putting a black background behind the heads, or shaping them slightly to better fit the projections. Overall though, you have an impressive-looking, and relatively inexpensive Halloween decoration inspired by the Disney Parks.