To mark the 90th birthday of the beloved cartoon character Mickey Mouse, Sotheby’s is going to offer seven rare original film posters from the 30s and 40s in an online sale, including some of the very few surviving examples. Let’s take a look at all seven posters offered at the sale.
Society Dog Show (1939) Poster, US. Estimate: £28,000-36,000
Society Dog Show was an eight-minute Technicolor animation, which was released in America in February 1939. In the film Mickey enters Pluto in an up-market dog show, which all goes wrong when Pluto falls for a posh pooch, and attacks the judge for making fun of him. The simple colour palette is used with great effect in this charming poster, which depicts a large image of Mickey grooming an unimpressed Pluto in readiness for a high society dog show. No more than three posters for this animation featuring Mickey and Pluto are known to have survived.
Mickey Mouse Poster, Early 1930s, US. Estimate: £26,000-35,000
Mickey Mouse's eyes have had various styles. Prior to 1933 Mickey had his original 'pie eyes'. These eyes were black and circular with a small triangular shape cut out of the circle, resembling a piece of pie. It is therefore possible for us to date this piece before 1933. To-date only two of these posters are known to have surfaced.
Mickey Mouse Silly Symphony (1938) Poster, French. Estimate: £16,000-24,000
The Silly Symphonies were a series of seventy-five short animations produced by Walt Disney, which started in 1929 and ended in 1939. This poster was purchased in 1995 and has been in a private collection since that time. This magical poster depicts many of the characters from Disney's Silly Symphony short cartoons, including several images of Mickey and Minnie, Donald Duck, Goofy, Three Little Pigs, Wynken, Blynken, and Nod, together with Max Hare.
Mickey Mouse in His 8th Birthday Celebration (1936) Poster, US. Estimate: £14,000-22,000
Special hand printed silkscreen posters were produced for Walt Disney throughout the mid 1930s. These were used to promote Walt Disney's cartoons and characters, and were done in conjunction with the theatres running a series of cartoons. This poster for Mickey's 8th birthday in 1936 was the only one to be in this larger format. To-date this is believed to be the only known surviving example.
Little Whirlwind (1941) Poster, US. Estimate: £7,000-10,000
This delightful Walt Disney eight minute short, which has no dialogue, tells the innocent story of how Mickey, who wants some of Minnie's just-baked cake, offers to tidy up her garden, and in doing so gets caught up in a mini tornado. Little Whirlwind features Mickey wearing his red shorts with buttons, which he would not wear again until his appearance in the 1995 animation Runaway Brain.
Canine Casanova/ Casanova Canine (1945) poster, French. Estimate: £3,000-5,000
This very sweet seven minute animation stars Pluto in the leading role. He falls in love with Dinah the dachshund, who snubs him, until he bravely rescues her from the dog pound. Although Pluto is the main star in this animation, the designer Boris Grinsson used his artistic license and included Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, Donald and his nephew, even though they do not appear in the animation.
Fantasia (1940) Poster, Belgium. Estimate: £2,000-3,000
The film was released in America in 1940, and unfortunately could not been shown in Europe until after World War II. This sweet poster for Fantasia focuses on Mickey in his central role as the Sorcer's Apprentice. Belgium posters pre-World War II were significantly larger than this poster. However during and after World War II, owing to paper shortages, smaller sized posters were produced.
Auction house: Sotheby’s online
Sale: Original Mickey Mouse
Bidding closes: 26 November 2018｜11pm (HKT)
Lots offered: 7