Oswald is back! Disney premiered a new animated short starring the 94-year-old character, directed by famed animator Eric Goldberg (How to Stay at Home, Pocahontas, Fantasia 2000) and produced by Emmy-winning producer Dorothy McKim (Prep & Landing, Get a Horse!) on YouTube today.
“On the eve of Disney’s 100th anniversary, it was such a joy to create the first new Oswald short from our studio since 1928,” says McKim. “Our hand-drawn animation team – including our hand-drawn legends Mark Henn, Randy Haycock and Eric Goldberg, as well our wonderful team of 2D apprentices, had a ball animating in the style of Oswald’s era.”
“Oswald is such a plucky scamp. We wanted to bring Oswald back, and in the short, he literally returns to his original home, the movie screen,” says Goldberg. “We wanted to have Oswald do all of the ‘squash-and-stretch,’ ‘rubber hose’-animation style, celebrating that first generation of Walt Disney’s artists.”
Oswald was first created in 1927 by Walt Disney for Universal Pictures and debuted in the short Trolley Troubles . He starred in several animated short films released to theaters from 1927 to 1938. Twenty-seven animated Oswald shorts were produced at Disney. Disney created Mickey Mouse as a replacement for Oswald after the control of the character was taken in 1928.
In 2006, Disney CEO Bob Iger made an unprecedented deal with NBC/Universal, that included permitting sportscaster Al Michaels to contract with NBC in exchange for the return of Oswald to his original home. Since then, Oswald has appeared in video games and merchandise, an animated short, and in Disney theme parks globally.
Created by Disney Animation’s hand-drawn animation team to help celebrate the start of Disney 100 Years of Wonder that marks 100th anniversary of The Walt Disney Company, the short Oswald the Lucky Rabbit is currently available on Walt Disney Animation Studios’ YouTube channel
Disney is also today launching an Oswald the Lucky Rabbit Snapchat lens globally that allows users to channel Oswald using AR technology.
Watch the new short below!
And here’s Oswald in his debut short, Trolley Troubles.