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1001 Mickey Mouse
Added on 20th August 2020

Creators Walt Disney and Ub Iwerks
First appearance in 'Steamboat Willie', 1928, New York

An iconic Walt Disney creation - the most famous mouse in the world.


Mickey is a friendly, cheerful anthropomorphised mouse distinctively dressed in white gloves, red shorts and yellow shoes. In the stories Mickey is often accompanied by his friends including Donald Duck (an impetuous and sometimes short-tempered duck), Goofy (a funny clumsy dog who is not very clever), Minnie Mouse (Mickey's glamorous girlfriend) and Pluto (Mickey's pet dog).

Why we chose it

Mickey Mouse is one of the world's most recognised characters and the mascot of the Disney company. He first appeared in Steamboat Willie in 1928 which was one of the first cartoons with sound. In 1935 he made his first appearance in colour in The Band Concert. And in 1940 Mickey appeared in the iconic full-length feature film Fantasia. Mickey appeared as the Sorcerer's Apprentice in the animation of Paul Dukas' symphonic poem. He has continued appearing in film, TV and comic strip forms ever since.

Where it came from

Mickey Mouse was created to replace Disney Studio's earlier creation, Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, which was owned by Universal Pictures. Disputes between Disney and Universal Pictures led to Walt Disney working with his animator Ub Iwerks (who had created Oswald) to explore new characters - which ultimately resulted in Mickey. Walt Disney initially christened him Mortimer Mouse but his wife suggested Mickey Mouse instead.

Where it went next

From 1930 Mickey Mouse also appeared in comic strip form in both the USA and in Europe. Merchandising around the character also started in the 1930s, with the first Mickey Mouse watch produced in 1933 using Mickey's hands as the hands of the clock, all of which helped spread recognition of the character. In 1958, when the first Disneyland park opened, Mickey was chosen as the mascot. In 1978 to mark the 50th anniversary of his creation, Mickey Mouse became the first cartoon character to have a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Associated stories

As well as appearing in his own stories, Mickey has appeared in other characters' stories, most notably in the 1988 film Who Framed Roger Rabbit where he has equal screen time with Bugs Bunny, the popular Warner Bros character.

Mickey's friends, Donald Duck and Goofy also starred in their own films.

Added on 20th August 2020

Creators Walt Disney and Ub Iwerks
First appearance in 'Steamboat Willie', 1928, New York