Disney Urban Legends, Fact or Faked?

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Last week, TMSM Members had a fascinating discussion regarding the various Urban Legends that have stemmed from Disney over the years. Some of the stories, I had heard before. Some, however, were really surprising, and even more surprising, the ones that were true! We have decided to put an Urban Legends tab on the site, under the new tab “fun stuff” that is coming. Until then, here are a few of the Urban Legends that have been swirling around.

The biggest tall tale, when it comes to Disney, is the story that Walt Disney was frozen in a cryogenic chamber following his death. The base of the story, was that Walt wanted to be preserved, so that one day he could return to life, once there was a cure for cancer, which caused his death.

In addition to the above story, there were also rumors that said “cryogenic chamber” is stored under the Pirates of the Caribbean ride at Disneyland.

Cinderella Castle in WDW can be disassembled or made to sink into the ground to protect it from natural disasters such as hurricanes.

There’s a whole other park beneath the Magic Kingdom.

The Haunted Mansion, in both Disneyland and Walt Disney World, are actually really haunted. People say that guests have brought ashes of deceased family members to the parks, and spread them in the Haunted Mansion as a final resting place for their loved ones.

At Pirates of the Caribbean in WDW, there is a ghost of a former Cast Member who passed away during the construction of the attraction. Allegedly, if you don’t say “goodnight” to the ghost, then the ride will break down, and not function the next day.

There is a basketball court inside the Matterhorn at Disneyland.


One of the images on the singing busts in the Haunted Mansion graveyard is Walt Disney.


Male Disney employees are not allowed to have any facial hair.

The plane used in ‘Casablanca’ is the same plane that can now be seen in The Great Movie Ride, at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

Donald Duck was banned in Finland because he didn’t wear any pants.

The hearse/coach outside the Haunted Mansion in WDW was actually used in a John Wayne movie.

Disneyland’s Skyway was permanently closed because someone fell out of it.

In the film Beauty and the Beast, the Beast has a tattoo.

Did I peak your interest yet? This is only the beginning of the different stories and legends that I have heard regarding Disney. You have to wait for our new section that’s coming to hear the rest. I’m not going to say if these are true or false. I know the answers, but it’s more fun to let people speculate and wonder, it keeps things interesting! If you know some Disney Urban Legends, and would like to have them added to the new Urban Legends section of TMSM, please send them in! To be continued…..

Author: Michele

Michele Atwood is the Owner/Editor of The Main Street Mouse and it’s subsidiaries and author of the book “Moving to Main Street U.S.A.” Michele also contributes Disney news to the Joe Kelley Morning Show on 96.5 WDBO in Orlando. She and her family made the move from Michigan to the Orlando area to pursue their Disney dreams. Michele is a life long Disney fan, and has two sons who have followed suit, each going on their first Disney trip before their first birthday’s. Part of the goal Michele has for The Main Street Mouse is not only to keep members informed, but to create somewhat of a Disney Family by relating to others through personal experiences and opinions. Also, Michele is making it a priority to share stories of inspiration and hope to other Disney Fans in an effort to share the Magic and hopefully make a difference in the lives of others.

2 Responses to Disney Urban Legends, Fact or Faked?

  1. Main Street Jim says:

    (Looks like I had to edit my post, as it didn’t like my first version.)

    “There’s a whole other park beneath the Magic Kingdom.”

    Sort of. At Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom – and below Future World at EPCOT – there is a system of tunnels called “Utilidors” that allow Cast Members to move from one side of the park to the other without being noticed by guests. Walt Disney planned this system in Florida after seeing a cowboy from Frontierland at Disneyland walking through Tomorrowland at Disneyland. The tunnel system is large enough to allow small vehicles and even a specially-designed Brinks armored truck to navigate “underground”. The tunnels are actually built at ground level, and the parks are the “second floor”, built up above ground level.

    “There is a basketball court inside the Matterhorn at Disneyland.”

    Again, *sort of*. It’s not a full court; it *is*, however, a half court.

    “One of the images on the singing busts in the Haunted Mansion graveyard is Walt Disney.”

    False. The “Walt Disney” lookalike in the singing busts is actually Thurl Ravenscroft, the lead singer for the “Mellow Men”. Ravenscroft was also the voice of Tony the Tiger for Kellogg’s for many years, and sang “You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch”, for the animated Christmas special “Dr. Suess’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas”.

    “Male Disney employees are not allowed to have any facial hair.”

    This was true for many years; however, when I started working at Magic Kingdom in 2001, we were allowed to wear a neatly-trimmed mustache. Today, male Cast Members *are* permitted to wear full facial hair, including beards, as long as they are kept neat. The “no facial hair” rule came from Walt wanting his Cast Members in the 1950s and 1960s to pose a neat, professional appearance versus what he had observed at “dirty carnivals and amusement parks”.

    “The plane used in ‘Casablanca’ is the same plane that can now be seen in The Great Movie Ride, at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.”

    False. The plane was discovered in a scrap yard (or so I’ve been told). The front half of the plane is found at Great Movie ride; the back half was placed in the Jungle Cruise.

    “The hearse/coach outside the Haunted Mansion in WDW was actually used in a John Wayne movie.”

    Not sure about this one, but the legend about Disneyland’s hearse was that it was used for Brigham Young’s funeral in Utah.

    “Disneyland’s Skyway was permanently closed because someone fell out of it.”

    False. No one has ever fallen *out* of a Skyway bucket; however, a maintenance worker succumbed to injuries after falling from the loading platform while performing routine maintenance. There is a story, though, about a Skyway Cast Member on the loading platform (a female), who did not let go of the bucket after sending it on its way. The bucket carried her about 50 feet away from the platform before she fell into a tree, where some sailors visiting the park saw what was happening and caught her as she fell from the tree in Fantasyland (read “Mouse Tales”, “More Mouse Tales”, and “RealityLand”, by David Koenig).

    Here’s a couple I don’t see:

    “Cinderella Castle’s turrets are nuclear-missile silos.”

    Absolutely false.

    “There is an apartment for the Disney family inside the castle in Florida.”

    True – at one time. In California, Walt Disney has an apartment above the Fire House on Main Street, so he had a place to “get away” or to “stay the night” at the park. In Florida, an apartment for the family was originally designed into the blueprints of Cinderella Castle. After Roy passed away shortly after the Magic Kingdom opened, the apartment went unused. It was then repurposed into a telephone-operator facility for taking reservations. In the early 1980s, when everything became computerized, the room was left empty, and then became Tinker Bell’s “staging room” before her nightly flights during the fireworks. In 2007, it was once again redesigned into the Cinderella Castle Suite, in which a random family would be presented with staying a night in the suite.

    “A woman tried to sue Disney after she claimed a stone fell from the castle and injured her.”

    True story. However, she lost the case; there is not one single “stone” in Cinderella Castle’s exterior; it’s all fiberglass and steel.

  2. Main Street Jim says:

    >>There’s a whole other park beneath the Magic Kingdom.<>There is a basketball court inside the Matterhorn at Disneyland.<>One of the images on the singing busts in the Haunted Mansion graveyard is Walt Disney.<>Male Disney employees are not allowed to have any facial hair.<>The plane used in ‘Casablanca’ is the same plane that can now be seen in The Great Movie Ride, at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.<>The hearse/coach outside the Haunted Mansion in WDW was actually used in a John Wayne movie.<>Disneyland’s Skyway was permanently closed because someone fell out of it.<>Cinderella Castle’s turrets are nuclear-missile silos.<>There is an apartment for the Disney family inside the castle in Florida.<>A woman tried to sue Disney after she claimed a stone fell from the castle and injured her.<<

    True story. However, she lost the case; there is not one single "stone" in Cinderella Castle's exterior; it's all fiberglass and steel.

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