The Mickey Mouse short films… without them, there would be no Disney empire as we know it. Before his feature length Snow White and the Seven Dwarves in 1937, Walt Disney was known for mostly for his cute, mischievous mouse creation Mickey who appeared before live-action features.
Walt Disney’s empire began in 1928 with what is still probably his most famous Mickey Mouse short, Steamboat Willie, after famously losing the rights to his beloved character, Oswald the Lucky Rabbit. The rest, of course, is history. Throughout the 1930s, Disney produced Mickey Mouse short after Mickey Mouse short. By 1940, over 100 Mickey Mouse shorts had been released. Many of these, such as Mickey’s Good Deed, Mickey and the Seal, and Mickey’s Trailer, I grew up watching over and over again on an old, worn-out VHS tape. I still adore them.
After Walt Disney’s massive success of Snow White, the company’s focus shifted to feature films and over the next two decades, less than 20 Mickey Mouse shorts were produced, before ceasing production on them completely. Mickey appeared in various other forms – TV shows, video games, comic books, but rarely again as an official Mickey Mouse short (in fact, after that, only one in the 80s and two in the 90s).
Now, Disney has decided to bring back from the dead the Mickey Mouse shorts – and boy, the Disney gang sure has been given a modern animation makeover. There is no doubt about it: the animation is slick, but for a old-school Disney lover, it’s a bit unsettling at first.
You can watch the short exclusively on Disney’s website. Check it out and chime in with your thoughts on the rather drastic animation changes.
Do you think that Disney should have stuck with the traditional style or do you believe that in resurrecting these shorts they made the right move by having their animation evolve with the times?