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October 31

October 31, 1927 – The Oswald the Lucky Rabbit Short Film All Wet is Released to Theaters


On October 31, 1927, the Oswald the Lucky Rabbit short film All Wet premiered in theaters. It was the fifth Oswald film released by the Disney Studio, and was directed by Ub Iwerks.

Oswald is selling hotdogs at the beach, and attaching two mice that keep sneaking by to steal from him. A customer arrives and buys one, but as the customer tries to eat, the hot dog starts barking, and the customer soon feels guilty enough to let the hot dog go free. As Oswald works, Fanny the Rabbit saunters by, and the two share flirtatious glances. As eh heads to a rowboat, Oswald closes up shop for the day and attempts to take her out in the boat, but she refuses. He then decides to get a job as a lifeguard, paying the current lifeguard to take his place. When Fanny sees him sporting the lifeguard badge, she immediately starts paying attention to him.

Oswald stands proudly with his lifeguard badge, while a nearby child nervously tries to ask him for help

Oswald stands proudly with his lifeguard badge, while a nearby child nervously tries to ask him for help

A child nervously approaches Oswald to get his attention, but Oswald ignores him, until the child is finally able to tell him his problem; Oswald quietly directs the child to the nearest bathroom. While he is distracted, Fanny comes up with a plan to get his attention: she decides to head out to sea in the rowboat herself, and pretends that she is drowning. Oswald hears her cries (although doesn’t realize she’s just floating in an inner tube) and race out after her. A large fish passes her and, thinking she’s food, grabs her foot and pulls her under. Oswald reaches her just in time, and a wave manages to carry them to shore. Fanny looks at Oswald as her hero, and gives him a huge kiss.


October 3

October 3, 1927 – The Oswald the Lucky Rabbit Short Film The Mechanical Cow is Released to Theaters

On October 3, 1927, the Oswald the Lucky Rabbit short film The Mechanical Cow was released to theaters. This was the third Disney produced Oswald short released.

Oswald is fast asleep when his alarm goes off. Angered by the interruption, Oswald fights the alarm, but after realizing what time it is, starts running around to wake his mechanical cow, who refuses to wake, even after Oswald pulls her bed out from under him. Finally, the mechanical cow wakes, and Oswald carries her to the slide to get downstairs. As they venture outside, Oswald starts trying to sell milk from the cow, an gets his first customer in the form of a baby hippo. The hippo and his mother are happy customers as they walk away. Oswald then comes across his sweetheart Fanny, and begins to flirt with her, but the cow gets in the way.

As Oswald and Fanny attempt to rekindle their moment, Fanny is kidnapped by a mysterious figure, who takes her away is a car full of gangsters. Oswald hops on his cow and speeds after her, using a magnet to pull themselves closer to the car. The figure is armed with a cannon, however, which fires a shot that almost destroys the cow. Oswald and the cow are able to save Fanny, but are soon pursued by the gang. The cow stops at the edge of a cliff, throwing Fanny and Oswald over the side, although they are able to save themselves by holding on to a branch. The figure and his gang aren’t so lucky, as they fall over the cliff into the waiting mouths of the creatures below. When the cow sees Oswald and Fanny, she is overjoyed, and the three ride away together.

July 9

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July 9, 1928 – The Oswald the Lucky Rabbit Short Film Tall Timber is Released to Theaters


On July 9, 1928, the Oswald the Lucky Rabbit short film Tall Timber was released to theaters. It is the twenty-third Oswald short done by Disney, and the last surviving short known to exist.

Oswald is whistling a tune as he paddles down a river in a canoe. He narrowly avoids rocks as he rails down some rapids helplessly, but eventually finds his way back to peaceful waters. As he does, a flock of ducks fly overhead, and he pulls out his gun to shoot. A duck stands on the edge of the gun, and notices that the gun is jammed. It sneaks into the gun and knocks the bullet out, peering at Oswald as his eyes are closed in determination. Oswald finally frees the trigger, only to find that the hammer has hit the duck on the head. He angrily pulls the duck out and kicks at it to make it fly away. Another duck approaches as Oswald tries to shoot again, and once again, the gun is jammed. As Oswald yells at this duck, the duck takes Oswald by the nose and pulls it out, sending it flying back to Oswald’s face and knocking the rabbit down. Oswald brings his nose back to its proper length, and loads the gun while the duck laughs. The duck is able to send the bullet flying into the canoe, springing a leak. Oswald attempts to stop his canoe from overflowing with water, and sends the stream back into the pond. As he tries to find the duck one more time, he finds the creature camped out on his head. Unfortunately, the duck escapes just in time, and Oswald knocks himself in the head with the butt of his gun, sending him and his canoe down to the bottom of the pond.

After his fall, Oswald narrowly misses being hit by a boulder, but is chased by it down a hill

After his fall, Oswald narrowly misses being hit by a boulder, but is chased by it down a hill

Oswald finds what he thinks is a rock to stand on, and is alarmed when the “rock” rises out of the water, revealed to be a moose. He holds onto the moose for dear life, and the moose sends Oswald flying over the edge of a cliff. Oswald grabs a branch on his way down, but sees a huge boulder being supported by the branch, which is now falling thanks to Oswald’s weight. Oswald tries to outrun the boulder once they both fall, but runs into a tree and is flattened by the boulder. As he tries to fix himself, three bears run through the forest and stop at two maple trees, where the two cubs start drinking the syrup from the taps attached to these trees. Meanwhile, Oswald uses another boulder to help return him to his plump self, but finds that he has become even more round, and rolls over to where the bears are, knocking into one of the cubs. The cubs fight over Oswald, and stretch him back to normal. As one of the cubs torments Oswald, they flee to a rock. Oswald grabs the rock to climb up, unaware that he has actually grabbed the mother bear. Oswald is chased by the bear into a cave, where a fight ensues, and the mama bear leaves without her fur, hiding her undergarments in shame. Oswald walks out in a nice new fur coat, puts on a top hat, and lights a cigar triumphantly.

June 11

June 11, 1928 – The Oswald the Lucky Rabbit Short Film Sky Scrappers is Released to Theaters


On June 11, 1928, the Oswald the Lucky Rabbit short film Sky Scrappers was released to theaters. This was the twenty-first Oswald short that was done by Disney. There are several similarities between this short and the 1933 Mickey Mouse short Building a Building.

Oswald and many others are hard at work at a construction site, with Oswald using his strength to carry a barrel of water up several stories. When lunch is announced, he drops the bucket, only to have it fall on his head, soaking him and his lunch. Just then, his girlfriend Ortensia rides by with her box lunches, and offers one to Oswald, who blushes and pays her. He then opens the lunch and enjoys a hot dog, while Ortensia is pleased that someone is enjoying her lunches. As she does this, however, a hungry dog begins to eat the contents of her carrier.

As Oswald and Ortensia kiss, the foreman uses a hook to pull Ortensia away

As Oswald and Ortensia kiss, the foreman uses a hook to pull Ortensia away

The foreman spots the two lovebirds below, and decides that he wants Ortensia to himself, so he uses a hook to pull Ortensia away and bring her to his perch. Ortensia dismisses his advances, and Oswald quickly climbs the rope to her rescue, only to have the rope be disconnected from the top, sending him falling to the ground. Undeterred, Oswald finds another rope and pulls himself to the top, and fights the foreman for Ortensia’s honor. Ortensia watches from the sidelines, and while it looks like the foreman may have Oswald beat, Oswald manages to win it in the end, and he and Ortensia end the short with a kiss.

November 30

November 30, 2010 – The Platform Video Game Epic Mickey is Released

Image credit:

Image credit:

“The world I had created was ravaged – a wasteland.”

On November 30, 2010, the platform video game Epic Mickey was released in North America, after previous releases in Australia on November 25and in Europe on November 26. Designed by Warren Spector and developed by Junction Point Studios, the game was published by Disney Interactive Studios and released on Nintendo’s Wii console. Epic Mickey was notable for being the first major project with Disney’s first successful animated character, Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, after the reacquisition of the character. The game was also designed to bring back the personality traits of Mickey Mouse from his earlier films, focusing less on the suburban “everyman” character Mickey became, and more on his mischievous and adventurous side. The game received mixed to positive reviews, and sold out its first day from the online Disney Store. Due to its immense popularity, a sequel was released on November 18, 2012.

The plot of the game deals with a land called the Cartoon Wasteland, created by the sorcerer Yen Sid as a home for obscure or discarded Disney characters, such as Oswald and Gremlin Gus. One day, a still-unknown Mickey Mouse enters the workshop where the model of the Cartoon Wasteland stands, and accidentally creates a creature known as the Shadow Blot. Mickey tries to erase it using paint thinner, but ends up spilling the thinner on the model. As Mickey tries to clean up before Yen Side returns, he creates more chaos and gives the Shadow Blot more strength. The Cartoon Wasteland becomes a land of ruin. Years later, the Shadow Blot abducts Mickey and takes him to the Wasteland, where he meets an angry and jealous Oswald. Mickey must use the magic paintbrush to win back Oswald’s trust and return the Cartoon Wasteland to its former glory.

October 17

October 17, 1927 – The Oswald the Lucky Rabbit Short Film Great Guns! is Released to Theaters

On October 17, 1927, the Oswald the Lucky Rabbit short film was released to theaters. It was the fourth Oswald cartoon released by Disney.

A newsboy runs down the street, holding up a newspaper with the headline of war. The factories’ whistles and bells sound, and everyone rushes to the recruiting office, including Oswald. He stops in front of his girlfriend’s house, calling to her, and as she comes out, she marvels at how impressive he looks as a soldier. As the trumpets sound, the two share one last kiss before he leaves. The scene soon changes to Oswald kissing a photo of his girl while stuck in a trench, bombs flying everywhere.

Oswald distracts himself from war by kissing the picture of his girlfriend while stuck in a trench

Cannons are shooting from all around, and neither side can get over the walls of the trench. Oswald seems oblivious to all the warfare as he continues to kiss his girlfriend’s picture, which annoys a pilot flying overhead. To get Oswald’s attention, he drops a bomb so that it tears a hole right through the picture. Maddened, Oswald gets in his own plane and chases after the pilot. The two fight in the air before crashing to the ground and continuing their fight with their fists. As Oswald gives the other pilot a good thrashing, he is stopped by a high-ranking officer for the other side, and sheepishly tries to walk away.

The officer chases Oswald, and tries to blow the rabbit up with a cannon – only to find that it is too short range. Thinking quickly, Oswald uses an elephant nearby as a cannon to fire back at the officer. Unfortunately, the elephant is blown to bits, leaving Oswald vulnerable again, but not for long, as he bats back the cannonballs with his ears.  Oswald himself is soon blown to smithereens, but his girlfriend shows up as an army nurse and uses a martini shaker to bring him back to his whole self. Oswald revived, the two share a kiss.

September 19

September 19, 1927 – The Oswald the Lucky Rabbit Short Oh Teacher Premieres in Theaters

On September 19, 1927, the Oswald the Lucky Rabbit short film Oh Teacher was released in theaters. It was the second Oswald short released after Trolley Troubles.

Oswald is seen riding his bike, swinging his schoolbooks around on their strap. As he rides by, he picks up a flower and begins to play a game of “She Loves Me, She Loves Me Not,” which turns out in his favor. He stops at his girlfriend’s, letting her sit in the sidecar of his bike, and the two ride off for school.

The troublemaker loses control of the bike as it winds down a rocky road

Near the schoolhouse, a mother pig stands with her child, kisses him goodbye, then places him on a hook to be picked up by the school trolley. A troublemaker grabs the child’s tail on the trolley, using it to pull him and his bike along. The conductor gets angry and uses exhaust fumes to brush the kid off. As the troublemaker sits in the middle of the road, he spies Oswald riding down the path, and decides to play a prank, pushing Oswald from his bike. The troublemaker quickly takes control of the bike (and Oswald’s girlfriend), but is unable to control it as it careens down a rocky path.

Oswald chases after the bike, but is unable to stop it as it crashes into a pole, splitting the sidecar from the bike. Oswald’s girlfriend, helpless, is sent on a one-way trip into the river, where she tries to keep her head above water and screams for help. In a clever gag, Oswald uses the cry for “help” to take him to his girlfriend, reaching out to her from the bank. The troublemaker, however, climbs on Oswald and saves the girl, taking the credit for Oswald’s hard work. The girl falls for the troublemaker, and Oswald challenges the troublemaker to a fight, which he loses.

The school bell rings, and all the students march inside. At recess, Oswald waits for the troublemaker to show his face, ready to clobber him. Once again, a fight begins between the two, with Oswald accidentally winning, and having his girlfriend fall in love with him again.

September 5

September 5, 1927 – The Oswald Short Film Trolley Troubles is Released

On September 5, 1927, the Oswald short film Trolley Troubles was released to theaters. It is known for being the first appearance of Oswald; an earlier Oswald short, Poor Papa, was rejected for release, as the distributers had expected a different kind of character rather than the older, more heavyset version Disney had produced. Trolley Troubles, however, was a success for Universal, and for Walt Disney and Ub Iwerks.

At the station, Oswald is cleaning up his trolley while children are causing mischief around him. Finally, when the trolley is wound up and ready to go, Oswald chases the kids away, but one kid sneaks aboard as Oswald drives away. Loading up the trolley at the first station he passes, Oswald and his passengers head merrily into town with many track gags along the way.

Oswald loses his temper at the stubborn cow standing in the middle of the tracks

At one point, a cow stands in the middle of the tracks, and although Oswald clanks his bell, the cow is undeterred. Oswald shouts at the cow, but the cow ignores him. Oswald then tries to calmly reason with the cow, but the cow still won’t budge. Oswald then backs up the trolley and goes full speed ahead, but fails to knock the cow from the tracks. The cow then steps sideways across the tracks, purposefully blocking the way, but Oswald gets an idea, and has the trolley go under the cow. The trolley passengers laugh at how Oswald has outsmarted the animal.

Oswald finds himself going up a very steep hill, but the trolley is unable to keep going, no matter how much Oswald pulls or pushes it. A nearby goat sees Oswald studying the trolley and decides to head-butt him, which causes the trolley to move. Although initially angry, Oswald gets the idea of using the goat to push the trolley up the hill. The plan is a success, until they realize that the hill is just as steep going down on the other side, and there seems to be no way to slow the trolley. Oswald rushes to pull the brake, but it rips off in his hands.  Passengers fall out at every curve of the track as the trolley goes over and around several hills. Oswald prays for the trolley to stop, and it finally does when it falls off the broken track and lands in the river. Oswald then paddles himself to safety on top of the trolley.

June 25

June 25, 1928 – The Oswald the Lucky Rabbit Short The Fox Chase is Released to Theaters

On June 28, 1928, the Oswald the Lucky Rabbit short The Fox Chase was released to theaters. It was the 22nd Oswald short film, and was one of the last Oswald shorts produced by Disney. It was produced at the same time that Walt Disney and Ub Iwerks were working in secret on the first Mickey Mouse cartoon, Plane Crazy. The Oswald short would later be remade as The Fox Hunt in 1931.

It’s the day of the big fox chase, and Oswald seems to be having trouble controlling his horse. The fox in question is standing in front of the dogs, taunting them as they wait behind the starting line. The horn sounds, and everyone stands at attention, waiting for the signal. The gun fires, and everyone heads out.

Oswald’s horse has a good laugh at Oswald’s expense while the rabbit is unable to mount

Unfortunately for Oswald, his horse is unable to head out with everyone else, and bucks Oswald off, laughing at the rabbit’s misfortune. As Oswald tries to leap onto his steed, the horse blocks him, and Oswald once again finds himself on the ground. After several failed attempts, Oswald tries to be clever by tying the horse’s tail to a nearby ladder and using it to mount, but the horse foils him again, and Oswald is dragged across the field, still clutching the ladder.

While the fox is having a good time outsmarting the dogs chasing him, Oswald is still trying to mount his horse. The horse finally stops, and Oswald, his legs completely stretched out, is no longer in the mood for games. He finally mounts the temperamental horse and continues with the chase. The fox is still able to outsmart his pursuers, but ends up running right past Oswald, who turns around suddenly. As horse and rider tumble over a stump, Oswald has become the “horse,” with his horse riding him. With another strange turn of events, Oswald then ends up riding one of the dogs chasing the fox, and jumps up and down with joy that he’s almost caught the cunning critter.

The two dogs that surprise the fox by hiding in the tree are fooled once again, and watch with surprise as the fox laughs at them

Two other dogs spot the fox heading their way and hide in a nearby tree, jumping out as the fox runs by, and all three start fighting. The fox manages to sneak out and laughs at the two dogs’ folly. The fox hides in a log and manages to keep outsmarting the dogs. When Oswald comes along, he comes up with an idea to drive the fox out, only to discover that a skunk has been hiding in the log instead. When Oswald and the two dogs run away in fear, the skunk turns to the audience and reveals that he’s only wearing a costume, and is really the fox, who laughs, as he’s won the chase.

May 28

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May 28, 1928 – The Oswald the Lucky Rabbit Short Oh What a Knight is Released to Theaters

On May 28, 1928, the Oswald short film Oh What a Knight was released to theaters. The short contains some impressive shadow animation, done by Ub Iwerks, as well as some interesting gags, animated by Hugh Harman and Ham Hamilton. This short was restored by the American Film Institute, and is one of the best preserved Oswald shorts in existence today.

The audience’s first shot of Oswald is with him riding a donkey and playing an accordion rather boisterously. Unfortunately, as the donkey dances to the music, he trips, sending both rider and donkey flying down the side of a hill. The donkey hits a rock right in front of an alligator-filled moat, with Oswald ending up on shore, but the donkey diving straight into the water. The donkey narrowly manages to escape being eaten, but loses his tail in the process; as the alligator laughs at the donkey’s misfortune, the joke ends up on him, as the donkey pulls his tail out to its full length again.

Oswald and Ortensia shyly look away after a steamy kiss, while Ortensia’s father appears looking appalled, unbeknownst to the pair

Meanwhile, Oswald whistles out a tune, which catches the attention of Ortensia the Cat, who stands on the balcony and swoons, sending him a kiss. He offers to play her a song on his accordion, but it is so waterlogged that it will no longer play. With the help of his donkey, Oswald climbs up to the balcony to greet his love, only to have her try to send him away, as she warns him that the king is nearby. He gives her a kiss that makes her swoon once more, only to have the king enter, looking not too terribly pleased. As Oswald attempts another kiss, he falls off the balcony, but is able to comically make his way back so that he may rescue Ortensia.

Inside, Oswald grabs a sword, ready to fight to free Ortensia. In a daring move, Oswald hands his sword to his shadow, who continues to do battle with the king while Oswald steals a kiss from his lady fair, which gives him enough courage to go back and take his place back in the fight. Oswald continues to break from the fight to steal kisses from Ortensia, but still manages to best the king, even when his situation looks grim. After freeing Ortensia from her ball and chain, Oswald uses it as a bowling ball to knock down the king and his minions.

Ortenisa’s skirt allows the two to float to safety while sharing yet another kiss

Thinking they are finally free, Oswald opens the tower door, only to be greeted by a hungry lion. The couple flees the tower by jumping from the window. Ortensia is able to use her skirts as a parachute, and the couple kisses as they float down to safety.