Mickey Mouse. Great symbol of America
The official birthday of Mickey Mouse is unknown and moreover, it is not entirely clear who his parents were.
According to one version, Mickey was the first to draw Walt Disney, the second – his friend and colleague Ab Iverks. Quite often, in the biographies of Mickey it is indicated that he is the fruit of the joint work of Disney and Iverks. However, the name of his godmother is known for sure – initially Disney called the mouse Mortimer, but his wife advised changing the name to Mickey (there are also a lot of versions of why this was done).
May 15, 1928 can be considered the unofficial birthday of Mickey Mouse. Then Walt Disney’s new studio made the cartoon “Plane Crazy”, which did not appear on the screens because the distributors did not show any interest in it (the eternal girlfriend Mickey debuted in the same cartoon). The debut of Mickey Mouse was the film “Steamboat Willie”, released in November of that year. It was the third cartoon about Mickey Mouse and the first sound film of the Disney studio.
Walt Disney constantly said that thanks to the commercial success of Mickey Mouse, he gained financial and creative independence. Disney from the very beginning made Mickey Mouse make money: in 1929 goods with a picture of a mouse appeared on sale, in 1930 – comics and books about his adventures, in 1933 – watches, in 1950 – a television show.
In 1981, Disney, along with Nintendo, released an electronic game in which Mickey Mouse caught falling eggs. In 1986, a similar game was released in the USSR under the title “Well, wait a minute!”, Where the Wolf caught eggs.
Mickey Mouse has become a symbol of Disneyland and Walt Disney Corporation itself.
It is worth adding that in the first cartoons Mickey spoke in the voice of Walt Disney.
Paradoxically, the creator of Mickey Mouse – Walt Disney – did not like and was afraid of mice.
In his biography of the great animator Walt Disney: Creator of Mickey Mouse (Walt Disney: Creator of Mickey Mouse) Michael Cole (Michael Cole) has collected an extensive collection of Disney sayings about Mickey.
Here are two of them: “I was always bored with girls. I love Mickey Mouse more than any of the women I have known ”; “Sometimes I try to understand why Mickey is popular all over the world. As far as I know, no one is able to compare with Mickey Mouse. He is very cute, he does no harm to anyone, through no fault of his own, fails, but always finds the opportunity to succeed, keeping a smile on his face. Throughout his life, he is faithful to one girl. Everyone likes Mickey because he is simple and human. ”
In an editorial published as an obituary on the death of Walt Disney (1965), The New York Times wrote: “Disney gave us and the world a friendly and charming mouse, Mickey. He will go down in history as the father of Mickey Mouse. ”
The renowned British cartoonist David Lowe called the creator of Mickey Mouse “the most important figure in the visual arts after Leonardo da Vinci.”
Neal Gabler, author of Walt Disney: The Triumph of the American Imagination, claims that Mickey Mouse has gained unprecedented popularity due to the fact that he shows the best qualities of character, which considered “American.”
Gabler, in particular, notes that Mickey is a convinced individualist, he is different from others and prefers to act independently. He always acts freely, constantly strives for maximum self-expression, but does not create problems for others and does not violate the law. Mickey Mouse does not shy away from the most difficult and dirty work, he works with complete dedication. His behavior does not change at all when Mickey is at the pinnacle of success. He is always able to succeed and never loses optimism and a positive outlook on the world. At the same time, Mickey Mouse pursues high and noble goals, he seeks to act in such a way as to benefit society.
However, any medal always has a flip side. It is little known that Mickey Mouse was not particularly loved by the scriptwriters and directors who created films with his participation.
Leonard Maltin and Jerry Beck, authors of The Mice and Magic: A History of American Animated Cartoons, note that Mickey Mouse suffers from one significant flaw – the lack of obvious flaws.
For example, another popular character of Disney cartoons – the duckling Donald Duck (according to legend, “copied” from one of the senior officials of the Franklin Roosevelt administration) has a much more vivid character: he is grouchy, squabble, angry and, due to this, “under him” easier to write stories. As a rule, “characteristic” cartoon characters gain more popularity than “neutral” characters. However, in the case of Mickey, an inexplicable miracle happened: he unconditionally overshadows Donald, and Goofy, and Pluto …