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Mickey Mouse Biography

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Mickey Mouse is one of the world's oldest and most famous vermin in the world - rubbing shoulders with everyone from Goofy to Britney Spears. So what makes this rambunctious rodent tick? We're taking a look at the history of Mickey Mouse. Why? Because we love him!

Of Mice and Men

Mickey Mouse was created to replace an earlier Disney character, Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, who bore a striking resemblance to early Mickey drawings. Mickey's creator, Ub Iwerks, came up with a lot of characters on his way to creating Mickey, including frogs, dogs, horses, cows and cats. Irwerks said he was inspired to create a mouse that had the spirit of Charlie Chaplin. Mickey made his first appearance in the cartoon Plane Crazy in 1928.

Sounds of Silence

Mickey originally appeared in silent cartoons, but by the end of 1928 he appeared in the cartoon Steamboat Willie, which featured synchronized music and sound. Streamboat Willie acutally found a distributer before Plane Crazy did, so it's often considered Mickey's true "debut." Mickey whistled and made other noises in the short but didn't actually speak until 1929. Walt Disney himself voiced Mickey - his first line was "Hot dogs, hot dogs!" Most other film studios at the time were still producing silent cartoons, so Disney took the lead and never looked back.

Evolution of the Mouse

Mickey continued to grow and evolve throughout the 20th century, moving into comic strips, feature films, video games, theme parks and a ton of games and toys. He first appeared in color in 1935, in the cartoon called "The Band Concert". He got his now-standard gloves in the 1929 short The Opry House. Mickey's appearance changed steadily from his creation onwards. What is often considered the "classic version" of Mickey is the one that was designed by Floyd Gottfredson. The most popular version, however, is the Mickey created by Italian illustrator Romano Scarpa.

Did U Know?

  • Mickey has been voiced by Walt Disney, Jim MacDonald and Wayne Allwine, who voices Mickey to this day.
  • Walt Disney was given a special Oscar in 1932 for the creation of Mickey Mouse.
  • Mickey appeared along rival Looney Tunes characters in the film Who Framed Roger Rabit.
  • Mickey was inducted into the Encyclopedia Britannica in 1934.

Mickey Mouse Says...

"Arithmetic is being able to count up to twenty without taking off your shoes."

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