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Walt Disney oversaw the creation of countless legendary characters and films. It was one of his first characters, however, that always held a special place in his heart- Mickey Mouse.
Mickey Mouse was created by Walt Disney on a long train ride back from losing his first hit character. Mickey’s popularity exploded, saving the Disneys from financial ruin and establishing their studio that grew into the multi-billion dollar enterprise it is today.
Walt Disney sensed that Mickey would be something special from the very beginning. He was fiercely protective of him and that showed itself when Walt auditioned voice actors for the role of Mickey’s voice. He kept interrupting them, asking them to try a higher pitch, showing them how he envisioned Mickey should sound. Frustrated at the delays and cost of the auditions, Roy Disney stepped in and suggested that Walt just provide the voice himself. Walt became the voice of Mickey Mouse up until studio business forced him to hand off the important role to studio employee Jimmy McDonald in 1948.
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Mickey Mouse was not originally supposed to play the role of Sorcerer’s Apprentice. Donald Duck was the first choice to be in the animated short. Mickey took on the role at the insistence of Walt Disney.
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In honor of Mickey Mouse’s 90th year, Mondays are now “Mickey Mondays” here at the Unofficial Disney Facts Page!
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Walt Disney’s favorite song was Feed the Birds from the film Mary Poppins. After a busy week at the studio he would often meet with Richard and Robert Sherman and at the conclusion of their meeting he would typically ask them to “play it”, which meant he wanted them to sing the song for him.
Despite Walt’s fondness for Feed the Birds, Richard Sherman has often said that the song he most associates with Mr. Disney is There’s A Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow. He believes the song captures Walt’s optimism for the future, which is what he and his brother had in mind when they wrote it.
Years later when Marvel Films was looking for a song to capture the same optimism for the Stark Expo featured in Iron Man 2, they enlisted the Sherman Brothers to write it. Make Way For Tomorrow Today was the result- an upbeat song that holds out hope for a brighter tomorrow.
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