in #CASE you missed it… Happy Birthday, Mickey Mouse!
Happy Birthday, Mickey Mouse! Fun Facts About Everyone’s Favorite Mouse
Happy Birthday to Mickey Mouse! Walt Disney’s iconic character turns 91 today (November 18) and we're celebrating with some fun facts.
Mickey Mouse made his debut on November 18th, 1928 in the animated short, “Steamboat Willie” at the Colony Theatre in New York City. It was the first animated cartoon to feature synchronized sound.
A seven-minute Mickey Mouse cartoon could have over 10,000 drawings that would take anywhere from six months to a year to complete. Mickey’s first live stage show, “Mickey Mouse Ideas” happened in 1931.
The Mickey Mouse watch is the most popular piece of merchandise with 2.5 million watches sold in the first two years of production. It was said that Mickey was Walt Disney’s alter-ego and he was patterned after Charlie Chaplin.
Four Finger Flash: Ever wonder why Mickey only has four fingers? Disney explained that the reason Mickey only has three fingers and a thumb is for both artistic and financial reasons. Disney said if Mickey had five fingers, his hand would look weird, "five digits are too many for a mouse, it would look like a bunch of bananas." Also, a 6-1/2 minute short film contains about 45,000 drawings. Disney said if you add up the time saved by NOT drawing that fifth finger, you'd find that the studio has saved millions of dollars.
Mortimer? Mortimer's name was originally meant for Mickey, but Walt Disney's wife, Lillian, thought the original name made Mickey seem pompous. Years later, the name was used for a new character created to be an opponent to Mickey. Mortimer only appeared in the cartoon, "Mickey's Rival," and was never seen again until the late 90s early 2000s when Mortimer's popularity skyrocketed and landed him several roles.
Love & Marriage: Mickey and Minnie were actually married – the folks behind their voices, at least. Wayne Allwine took over the voice acting for Mickey Mouse in 1977. He was only the third person to ever voice Mickey (Walt Disney himself was the first). He voiced Mickey until he died in 2009, doing it for 32 years! Actress Russi Taylor began performing for Minnie Mouse in 1986 and still does so to this day, making her the longest lasting performer for Minnie Mouse. The two got married in 1991 and remained together until Wayne passed. Details of their personal life aren't easily available, but it's not hard to imagine the two falling in love after long recording sessions while playing their rodent characters!
Kid-friendly gas masks: On December 7th, 1941, Japanese pilots dropped a bomb on the Pearl Harbor military base, which is one of the main reasons that drove the United States into World War II. After this incident, many Americans feared that the Axis would attack their soil. To protect its population, the government distributed gas masks to the state of Hawaii. Unfortunately, there were only adult-sized masks. Children had trouble wearing the large gas masks and many were terrified of the safety device’s look. As a solution, gas masks were created and issued shaped as Mickey Mouse! The masks were designed in mind so that children would wear them at all times and carry them as a game.
Banned: Mickey Mouse was banned in Romania in 1935 because they thought he would scare young children. The government thought that a 10-foot mouse (on the movie screen) would be too much for Romanian children to handle. They must have reversed their decision since then, since Mickey still appears on the Romanian Disney Channel. In the government's defense, the old Mickey Mouse cartoons could sometimes get pretty creepy.
This ain’t no Mickey Mouse outfit: In the early days of Disney Studios, in a staff party, a cartoon short was shown of Mickey and Minnie Mouse in an X-rated scene. Afterwards, Walt chuckled along with everyone else, invited them up on the stage to be recognized, fired them both on the spot, and ordered the film to be destroyed.
Who is your favorite Disney character?