Mickey Mouse just might be one of the most widely known characters in history. Created by Walt Disney and Ub Iwerks in 1928, the feisty little rodent would become a pop culture phenomenon in a matter of years. Heritage has a number of early pieces of Mickey Mouse animation art and cels up for auction, but none as significant as these.
Plane Crazy Mickey and Minnie animation art and cel are up for auction right now. The 1929 cartoon is one of Disney’s most ambitious and important efforts, simply because it is the cartoon that introduced Mickey and Minnie Mouse to the world. Originally shown to a test audience in 1928 (as a silent piece), it was eventually given sound and ultimately changed the animation scene forever. Ub Iwerks, Hugh Harman and Rudolf Ising all worked on the animation. The set is up to $2400 at the moment, but I predict the bidding will break the $5K mark due to the scarcity of this art, as well as the importance of this Mickey Mouse animation art.
From the item description:
“The Mickey Mouse short Plane Crazy was first shown as a silent film to a test audience on May 5, 1929, technically making it the first-ever Mickey Mouse cartoon. It was co-directed by Walt Disney and Ub Iwerks (who reportedly worked six straight weeks on this film, with the help of Hugh Harmon and Randolph Ising). Sound was added later and the film was released to the general public on March 17, 1929 as the fourth short following the release of Steamboat Willie.
This lot is a sheer piece of Disney History. Included are two original hand-drawn 12 field 2-peghole animation drawings from Plane Crazy. One features Mickey and Minnie as they try to stay in the plane (with a blue stamp numbered 207 in the upper right corner); the other is of the swerving plane they are trying to fly, which can be seen at the 4:10 mark into the short. Mickey and Minnie together are 4″ while the great drawing of the plane is 7″. Both pieces are housed in a double aperture mat, with openings measuring approximately 11″ x 8″. The drawings are framed with Plexiglas for an overall size of 20″ x 26″.
But that’s not all, folks! Also included is a Disney Ink and Paint Studio hand-painted One of One limited edition cel of Minnie and Mickey from this same scene, placed over a print image of the plane. The special cel is matted (with an opening of 11″ x 9″) and framed with Plexiglas; it includes a Disney cel, and a Disney COA attached to the back of the frame. What a historic lot!”
Steamboat Willie Mickey Mouse by Ub Iwerks is up, as well. Despite Steamboat Willie not being Mickey Mouse’s first appearance, it is still a highly regarded piece of animation. Heritage has two pieces from the cartoon for auction, and I’m predicting they will break the $2K mark. These are Ub Iwerks originals, so I am highly jealous of whoever wins the two pieces of Mickey Mouse animation art.
The item description reads:
“Historic Ub Iwerks original 12 field 2-peghole animation drawing of Mickey Mouse, in his very first role as Steamboat Willie! This is a historic piece of artwork from the first widely released Mickey Mouse short. It premiered at the Colony Theater in New York on November 18, 1928. The short was directed by Walt Disney. This great drawing is from the scene of Mickey Mouse playing the teeth of a large cow at about the 6:27 mark. The number 152 is written in the bottom corner. Back of the paper has a blue stamp marked 148. Great facial expression on this 5” image. This truly is a piece of “It All Started with a Mouse” history. Matted with an opening of 11″ x 9″; framed with Plexiglas for an overall size of 19.5″ x 17″. Fine condition. “
These auction lots are part of the 2017 July 1 – 2 Animation Art Auction in Dallas.