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Original Production Animation Drawing of Mickey Mouse from "Fun and Fancy Free," 1947

Original Production Animation Drawing of Mickey Mouse from "Fun and Fancy Free," 1947
Original Production Animation Drawing of Mickey Mouse from "Fun and Fancy Free," 1947

Original production animation drawing of Mickey Mouse in red, green, and graphite pencils from "Mickey and the Beanstalk" section of "Fun and Fancy Free," 1947, Walt Disney Studios; Numbered A13 in pencil lower right; Size - Mickey Mouse: 4 1/2 x 4", Sheet 10 x 12"; Unframed.

"Fun and Fancy Free," 1947 was the 9th Walt Disney animated feature film and was released to theaters on September 27, 1947. This was the fourth package film produced by the Walt Disney Studios as a way to save money during World War II, and it helped to finance Cinderella and later films such as Alice In Wonderland and Peter Pan. "Fun and Fancy Free" is composed of two animated stories that are joined together with live-action segments. The first story is Bongo and is hosted by Jiminy Cricket and narrated by Dinah Shore. Bongo tells the story of a circus bear cub named Bongo who longs for freedom from captivity. He is able to escape the circus and in the wild falls in love with a female bear named Lulubelle. He realizes he must prove himself worthy of being a mate for Lulubelle by besting another bear named Lumpjaw, who is a romantic rival for Lulubelle's affection.

The second story is Mickey and the Beanstalk and is hosted by Edgar Bergen. The segment had originally been planned to be a full length feature film, but due to the war effort and Disney's governmental contraction for the production of animated propaganda films, the story line was significantly edited down to a run time of 73 minutes. Mickey and the Beanstalk is a retelling of the English fairy tale Jack and the Beanstalk featuring Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, and Goofy as three peasants who discover a temperamental Willie the Giant's castle in the sky through the use of magic beans. The three heroes must battle the greedy but lovable Giant in order to restore peace to their home, Happy Valley, be retrieving a stolen singing Gold Harp. The voice of Micky Mouse was provided by Walt Disney, but this was his last performance as he was becoming too busy with other projects. Walt was replaced as the voice of Mickey for future shorts and films by sound effects artist Jimmy MacDonald.

This is a rare and wonderful drawing of Mickey Mouse from the vintage 1947 Walt Disney feature film "Fun and Fancy Free." Fred Moore was the supervising animator for the film, animated Mickey Mouse, and his handling of the title character is, as always, brilliant! Moore started working at Disney Studios in 1930 when he was only 19 years old. He perfected the squash and stretch of characters, which showed that they had real mass and in the process making them even more believable than ever before. There is no wonder that Walt put him in charge of the Dwarfs for "Snow White."

I think Freddy Moore was able to pull expressions and movements from Mickey better than any other animator of the day, and this drawing really showcases his skill; which by 1947 was at it's peak. The drawing pictured here is a very large, full figure, eyes and mouth open image of Mickey Mouse including his tail. He is from the scene when he is trying to convince Willie the Giant to change himself into a fly, as he had spotted a fly swatter on the table next to him and had plans to, at the very least, escape from the Giant. It just does not get any better as a piece of original artwork from Walt Disney's last voice performance as Mickey Mouse, and here is an absolutely perfect piece!


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