I was at Disneyland a couple of weeks ago, and noticed that Disney is once again stacking the Haunted Mansion line while a pre-determined number of people go into the loading room. This is really great to see, as it enhances "show," leaving the front porch empty, not jammed with guests pushing and shoving to get in.
But, for many, many years I've wondered ...
How come they don't close the front doors again BEFORE starting the Ghost Host spiel? "When hinges creak in doorless chambers ... " With the front door open and sunlight pouring in, it doesn't set the tone very well. The recording starts before all but a tiny number of people are into the room.
Then, the Stretch Room doors open as guests are still trickling in, completely ruining the effect.
It does not seem that it would add any more time (maybe 15-20 seconds) to do the following:
1) Let in the pre-determined number of guests and have them enter the salon/first room;
2) Wait until ALL guests are in, then close the front door, having a cast member say something like "Have a delightfully ghoulish time!"
3) Once the door is closed, start the recording. When the recording is FINISHED, open the Stretch Room doors;
4) Once ALL guests are in the Stretch Room, close the doors and begin the descent.
This doesn't seem like it would be too complicated or add tremendously to loading time. Honestly, it might change the intervals by a few seconds, but not enough to impact capacity ... while greatly enhancing show.
This is the way they did it, as I recall, until the Pressler era of cost-cutting and "efficiency."
Would it be that difficult to do? Isn't this the way the show is SUPPOSED to run? (Imagine going to a Broadway play and having the curtain go up while people are still getting seated and before the cast or orchestra is ready!)