November 18, 1928: Mickey Mouse (and Minnie) make their official debut at New York’s Colony Theater in the animated short Steamboat Willie. It is the third Mickey cartoon to be produced (behind Plane Crazy and The Gallopin’ Gaucho), but the first to be distributed. It is also one of the first cartoons ever to feature fully synchronized sound (Walt even provides the voice for Mickey). The film is an instant hit, rocketing both its star and creator to fame.
March 17, 1929: Plane Crazy, the first Mickey Mouse cartoon ever created, is officially released to the public.
May 23, 1929: Mickey speaks (intelligible words) for the first time as The Karnival Kid: “Hot dog! Hot dog!” (inspiring the catchphrase for Mickey Mouse Clubhouse more than seventy-five years later).
June 26, 1929: Mickey’s theme song debuts—a catchy little ditty entitled, “Minnie’s Yoo Hoo” (co-written by Walt).
Sheet music distributed to the Mouse’s loyal followers
January 13, 1930: The first Mickey Mouse comic strip—based on the short Plane Crazy—hits newsstands.
September 5, 1930: Pluto makes his first appearance in The Chain Gang.
Company letterhead featuring the Big Cheese
1931: The Mickey Mouse Club–a kids club started two years prior by the Fox Dome Theater in Ocean Park, California–reaches one million members.
May 3, 1931: Pluto is depicted for the first time as Mickey’s dog in The Moose Hunter.
December 9, 1931: Mickey’s Orphans debuts, a film that will garner Walt an Academy Award nomination.
The Disney family’s 1931 Christmas card
May 25, 1932: Goofy makes his first appearance (as Dippy Dawg) in Mickey’s Revue.
1933: Ingersoll begins manufacturing the now-iconic Mickey Mouse wristwatch.
January 7, 1933: Building a Building is released, eventually netting Walt another Academy Award nomination for Best Animated Short.
August 11, 1934: Donald Duck (who made his debut in the Silly Symphony, The Wise Little Hen) appears alongside Mickey for the first time in Orphan’s Benefit.
November 22, 1934: Mickey Mouse debuts in float-form in the annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.
February 23, 1935: The first color Mickey Mouse cartoon, The Band Concert, is released.
March 16, 1935: The Mickey-Donald-Goofy trio appears for the first time in Mickey’s Service Station.
October 15, 1937: Clock Cleaners debuts, now considered one of the greatest animated shorts of all time.
Several of Mickey’s animators, as caricatured by an anonymous co-worker for the in-studio magazine The Mousetrap
September 24, 1938: Brave Little Tailor opens and will later be nominated for an Academy Award.
July 21: 1939: The Pointer, nominee for Best Animated Short, opens to the public.
November 13, 1940: Mickey makes his feature film debut in The Sorcerer’s Apprentice sequence of Fantasia.
October 3, 1941: Lend a Paw is released in theaters—the first Mickey Mouse short to win an Academy Award.
A Mickey sketch from Walt to his old boss at the Kansas City Film Ad Company
June 7, 1946: Another Academy-Award nominee is released in Squatter’s Rights.
October 3, 1947: Mickey’s Delayed Date marks Walt’s final regular performance of Mickey’s voice.
March 19, 1948: Jimmy MacDonald takes over vocal duties in Mickey Down Under.
December 3, 1948: Mickey and the Seal opens and will go on to be nominated for Best Animated Short.
April 18, 1953: The Simple Things is Mickey’s final theatrical release in Walt’s lifetime.
Academics surmise that Mickey is the most famous personage in the history of mankind
November 13, 1978: Mickey Mouse is the first fictional character to receive a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
December 16, 1983: After three decades, the Main Mouse returns to the big screen in Mickey’s Christmas Carol. The featurette is nominated for an Academy Award for Best Short Film.
August 11, 1995: The Oscar-nominated Mickey short Runaway Brain opens alongside the live-action A Kid in King Arthur’s Court.
Mickey’s global stardom persists seven decades after being introduced, as evidenced by the long-running German comic Micky Maus
May 1, 1999: The animated television series Mickey Mouse Works debuts on Disney’s One Saturday Morning on ABC. It will last for two seasons and twenty-five episodes.
January 13, 2001: House of Mouse is added to the One Saturday Morning block. It will run for three seasons and fifty-two episodes.
May 5, 2006: Mickey Mouse Clubhouse arrives on Playhouse Disney. One hundred twenty-five episodes will air over its four seasons.
June 28, 2013: “Croissant de Triomphe,” first episode of the new Mickey Mouse shorts series, premieres on the Disney Channel.
Comic-book adaptation of the popular Disney Channel series
November 27, 2013: Get a Horse! hits theaters nationwide with the smash feature Frozen. It snags Mickey’s third Academy Award nomination in as many releases.
January 15, 2017: The Disney Channel’s latest Mouse-centered series, Mickey and the Roadster Racers, kicks off with “Mickey’s Wild Tire!”
January 22, 2018: Mickey’s forever-girlfriend, Minnie Mouse, receives a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Mickey turned the ripe old age of ninety on November 18, 2018
Ch. 3: The Rest of the Gang >>