Yester California Adventure at Yesterland

Celebrate Mickey:
75 InspEARations


at California Adventure
75 Mickeys at Disney California Adventure

Photo by John Delmont, 2005

Lauren Delmont poses with 13 Mickeys

Sometimes it’s challenging to pose with Mickey Mouse at a Disney theme park. He’s a popular mouse, so the lines to pose with him can be long.


Here at Yester California Adventure, it’s early 2005, and it’s easy to pose with Mickey because there are 75 of him. But don’t expect a hug. Each Mickey is made of polyurethane with an internal steel frame, weighs approximately 700 pounds, and stands 6 feet 5 inches tall, including the base.

75 Mickeys at Disney California Adventure

Photo by John Delmont, 2005

“Saxophonic Mickey” — saxophonist and composer Dave Koz

The Mickeys are all over the place. Some are on Paradise Bay at Golden State Park, where you might have seen Rockin’ the Bay in 2002 or the Halfpipe Bay Show during the X Games Xperience in 2003. Others are in Sunshine Plaza, Bountiful Valley Farm, and elsewhere here at the young park.

Before or after you pose with each Mickey statue, take a look at the triangular identification sign on the base. Mickey has a lot of friends—musicians, painters, actors, athletes, broadcasters, animators, comedians, producers, and even Disney Legends—and each statue represents the creative talent of at least one of them.

75 Mickeys at Disney California Adventure

Photo by John Delmont, 2005

“Music Royalty” — top selling musical artist Sir Elton John

The statue program, called “Celebrate Mickey: 75 InspEARations,” was announced on November 18, 2003—exactly 75 years after an event that would change the life of a struggling 26-year-old filmmaker named Walt Disney. On November 18, 1928, Mickey Mouse debuted in the first synchronized sound cartoon, “Steamboat Willie,” at Universal’s Colony Theater in New York City.

75 Mickeys at Disney California Adventure

Photo by John Delmont, 2005

“All The World’s His Stage” — actress Susan Lucci (All My Children)

“It’s a true testament to Walt that he was able to create Mickey Mouse with such depth and personality that, on his 75th Anniversary, Mickey continues to take us on adventures, make us laugh and inspire us,” said Michael D. Eisner, chairman and CEO of The Walt Disney Company, at the 2003 announcement. “Mickey’s relevance can even be seen in the diverse array of people who are participating in this statue program—some have been working with Mickey for years and others are just true fans.”

75 Mickeys at Disney California Adventure

Photo by John Delmont, 2005

“UndercovEAR Mickey” — actress Jennifer Garner (Alias)

The statues reflect the artists in different ways. Some are quite literal. For example, Jennifer Garner’s statue reflects the secret agent genre of her ABC television series Alias (2001 to 2006).

75 Mickeys at Disney California Adventure

Photo by John Delmont, 2005

“Ellenland” — Ellen DeGeneres, stand-up comedian, television host, actor

“Ellenland” Mickey holds a fish bowl with Dory from Finding Nemo because Ellen DeGeneres provided the voice for the character.

75 Mickeys at Disney California Adventure

Photo by John Delmont, 2005

“Fruits of the Mouse” — Disney animator Andreas Deja

Others statues reflect the creativity and whimsy of the artist. Animator Andreas Deja—whose brilliant work includes animating Gaston in Beauty and the Beast (1991), Jafar in Aladdin (1992), and Scar in The Lion King (1992)—cleverly reimagined Mickey as a product of the produce department.

75 Mickeys at Disney California Adventure

Photo by John Delmont, 2005

“Undersea Mickey” — artist Wyland, best known for his outdoor murals of whales

Some artists—notably Raven, Wyland, David Willardson, Peter and Harrison Ellenshaw, Rosie O’Donnell and MEAR ONE—personally painted their own Mickey statue. Others shared their designs and ideas with TivoliToo, the Minnesota-based studio that molded, sculpted, and transformed each statue into a finished work of art.

75 Mickeys at Disney California Adventure

Photo by John Delmont, 2005

“Funny Pages” — Lori Tyminski, Senior Storybook Artist for Disney Publishing

75 Mickeys at Disney California Adventure

Photo by John Delmont, 2005

“Mickey and the Nightingale” — actress Ming-Na

75 Mickeys at Disney California Adventure

Photo by Lauren Delmont, 2005

“Home Run Hero” — actor, director, producer, and screenwriter Ben Affleck

No, that’s not Academy Award winner Ben Affleck in the photo above. It’s Lauren’s father John Delmont.

75 Mickeys at Disney California Adventure

Photo by Lauren Delmont, 2005

“Jet Setter” — actor and pilot John Travolta

75 Mickeys at Disney California Adventure

Photo by Lauren Delmont, 2005

“Monday Night Mickey” — Al Michaels & John Madden

Remember, it’s early 2005 here, so nobody knows yet that in mid-2005, John Madden will jump from ABC to NBC—and, more significantly for Disney fans, that in early 2006, The Walt Disney Company will trade ABC’s Al Michaels to NBC Universal in exchange for Oswald the Lucky Rabbit.

75 Mickeys at Disney California Adventure

Photo by Lauren Delmont, 2005

“Back to School” — Disney Legend Al Konetzni

Al Konetzni created the Disney School Bus lunch box, the best selling lunch box in history.

75 Mickeys at Disney California Adventure

Photo by John Delmont, 2005

“Peace & Love” — champion figure skater Michelle Kwan

Pssst... Wanna know a secret? There are actually 78, not just 75, Mickey statues. The extras were made as substitutes in case any of the statues have to be pulled for some reason. That way, park guests can still count 75 statues.


The 75 Mickey statues of “Celebrate Mickey: 75 InspEARations” were on display at Disney’s California’ Adventure from January 10, 2005 through February 22, 2005.

By that time, they had already had a long journey. It began with their unveiling at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom on November 18, 2003.

Making a few extra Mickey statues turned out to be a good decision. After Janet Jackson’s January 2004 Super Bowl wardrobe incident, Disney replaced her “Mickey’s Nation 1928” with “Circle Vision” by Luis Fernandez for the rest of the tour.

Although the statues were scheduled to be at the Magic Kingdom for six months, they were removed February 24, 2004 to go to the annual stockholders’ meeting of The Walt Disney Company in Philadelphia on March 3, 2004.

Next, the 75 Mickey statues were divided into five groups of 15 so they could visit five cities simultaneously. Their schedule called for Atlanta, Boston, Philadelphia, Portland, and Chicago from May 18 to July 20, 2004, followed by Minneapolis, Dallas, Denver, Kansas City, and Houston from August 17 to October 21, 2004.

After being reunited at Disney’s California’ Adventure, the statues headed to Washington D.C., where 75 were displayed at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center’s Woodrow Wilson Plaza from March 19 to April 30, 2005. The next tour stop was New York City. Some pieces were displayed at World of Disney store in New York. Then 77 of them went to Sotheby’s New York to be auctioned off for charity. Exhibition began on September 20, 2005. The pieces were sold one week later.

Disney Consumer Products sold pins and 6-inch figurines based on the InspEARations statues.

Here’s how the Mickey statues shown in this article did in the auction:

  • Saxophonic Mickey (Dave Koz) sold for $18,000, benefitting Starlight Children’s Foundation.
  • Music Royalty (Sir Elton John) sold for $52,000, benefitting Elton John AIDS Foundation.
  • All The World’s His Stage (Susan Lucci,) sold for $2,500, benefitting Little Flower Children’s Services of New York.
  • UndercovEAR Mickey (Jennifer Garner) sold for $3,000, benefitting Elizabeth Glazer Pediatric AIDS Foundation.
  • Ellenland (Ellen DeGeneres) sold for $7,500, benefitting Children’s Action Network.
  • Fruits of the Mouse (Andreas Deja) sold for $4,500 Make-a-Wish Foundation of America.
  • Undersea Mickey (Wyland) sold for $11,000, benefitting Wyland Foundation.
  • Funny Pages (Lori Tyminski) sold for $29,000, benefitting Make-A-Wish Foundation of America.
  • Mickey and the Nightingale (Ming-Na) sold for $2,500, benefitting Starlight Children’s Foundation.
  • Home Run Hero (Ben Affleck) sold for $9,500, benefitting The Jimmy Fund at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.
  • Jet Setter (John Travolta) sold for $3,250, benefitting Hollywood Education and Literacy Project.
  • Monday Night Mickey (Al Michaels & John Madden) sold for $3,500 benefitting Make-a-Wish Foundation of America.
  • Back to School (Al Konetzni) sold for $45,000, benefitting Make-a-Wish Foundation of America.
  • Peace & Love (Michelle Kwan) sold for $20,000, benefitting Children’s Miracle Network.

Buyers also paid a 20% buyers premium to Sotheby’s, so the buyer of Sir Elton John’s Mickey actually paid $62,400 while the buyer of Susan Lucci’s Mickey actually paid $3,000. These are not only the highest and lowest amounts in the list above, but also for the entire auction.

The auction raised a total of $614,500 for the charities. With the buyer’s premium, buyers paid a total of $737,400.

75 Mickeys at Disney California Adventure

Photo by Werner Weiss, 2010

“All Aboard!” Mickey — animator Ollie Johnston

The statues are now in the hands of private collectors. One of them is on public display at the Walt Disney Hometown Museum in Marceline, Missouri. It’s “All Aboard!” Mickey by legendary animator Ollie Johnston, one of Walt Disney’s “Nine Old Men.” The subject of Mickey in railroad garb is very fitting for the museum, which is housed in the beautifully restored Santa Fe Depot in a town founded by the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway in 1887.


About John Delmont and Lauren Delmont
The Secret Tour of Disneyland
Available at Amazon.com

John Delmont and Lauren Delmont are the father-daughter team that created The Secret Tour of Disneyland, an entertaining, feature-length DVD, filmed on location at Disneyland and other Southern California places with connections to Walt Disney. Hosted by Lauren, the tour presents fun facts about Disneyland and the park’s history. (See the Yesterland review of The Secret Tour of Disneyland, 2nd Edition.)

John Delmont works in the video business installing production systems and editing suites. He lives in Westminster, California.

Lauren Delmont graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara, with a major in Theater Arts. She currently lives in the city of Hanzhou, China, where she is part of a Disney program that teaches English to children in China.

You can purchase The Secret Tour of Disneyland from Amazon.com.


List of All 75 78 Mickeys
 
Original list of 75 Mickey statues announced November 18, 2003
NAME OF ARTIST NAME OF STATUE NAME OF CHARITY
Ben Affleck Home Run Hero The Jimmy Fund at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Andre Agassi Love All Andre Agassi Charitable Foundation®
Wayne Allwine & Russi Taylor I Speak for Mickey and Mickey Speaks for Me Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation
Lamberto Alvarex El Mickey Make-A-Wish® Foundation
Gary Baseman Base Mouse Childrens Hospital Los Angeles
Chris Berman & Dick Vitale ESPN 25th Anniversary Mickey The V Foundation for Cancer Research
Black Entertainment Television Mickey in the Park Minority Task Force on AIDS, New York
Wayne Brady Extended Play Make-A-Wish® Foundation
Jerry Bruckheimer Slapstick Mouse Ilitch Charities For Children
Linda Cohn, Dan Patrick & Robin Roberts ESPN Sports Center Mickey The V Foundation for Cancer Research
Jeff Conine Family Tree Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital Foundation
Jamie Lee Curtis The Original Mouse Pad Children Affected by AIDS Foundation
Ellen DeGeneres Ellenland Children’s Action Network
Andreas Deja Fruits of the Mouse Starlight Children’s Foundation®
Disneyland Resort Entertainment Art Dept. Reflections on Mickey Make-A-Wish® Foundation
Kermit Eisenhut Lone Star Texas Children’s Cancer Center
Peter Ellenshaw & Harrison Ellenshaw Mickey’s Dream Childrens Hospital of Los Angeles
Chris Fedun for Jump5 Let’s Party Make-A-Wish® Foundation
Annette Funicello Always My Angel, Mickey National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Southern Calif. Chapter
Andy Garcia Mambo Mickey Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation
Luis Armand Garcia, George Lopez Viva Mickey Make-A-Wish® Foundation
James Gandolfini Funny Bones Children Affected by AIDS Foundation
Jennifer Garner UndercovEAR Mickey Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation
Kevin Garnett Believe in your Dreams 4XL - For Excellence in Leadership®
Christina Grantham Fountain of Fun Boys Hope Girls Hope
Bob Guiney Good Catch Starr Commonwealth
Tom Hanks Space Mouse James Birrell Neuroblastoma Research Fund
Tony Hawk Mouseskateer Tony Hawk Foundation
Trey Hoyumpa, Parsons School of Design Mickey’s Shadow Parson’s School of Design Scholarship Fund
Vanessa Hunt, The Disney Store It Was All Started By A Mouse Make-A-Wish® Foundation
Anita Hurst Mickey Reigns Community Transitional School, Portland, Oregon
Janet Jackson Mickey’s Nation 1928 A Place Called Home
Sir Elton John Music Royalty Elton John AIDS Foundation
Ollie Johnston All Aboard! Verdugo Hills Hospital Foundation
Star Jones Wild for Mickey East Harlem School at Exodus House
Thomas Knechtel Patchwork Pal Imagine It! Children’s Museum of Atlanta
Al Konetzni Back to School Make-A-Wish® Foundation
Dave Koz Saxophonic Mickey Starlight Children’s Foundation®
Kelly Kozel & Sharon Noh, The Coca Cola Company Delivery Man Mickey Boys and Girls Clubs of America
Michelle Kwan Peace & Love Children’s Miracle Network®
Major League Baseball® National Pastime Mickey Major League Baseball Charity, Inc.
Dennis Larkins, Kodak Memories Children’s Miracle Network®
Lenox Tuxedo Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation
Susan Lucci All the World’s His Stage Little Flower Children’s Services of New York
Marlee Matlin True Blue Children Affected by AIDS Foundation
Brian Matson Field Mouse Chicago Children’s Museum
Brian McKnight Music Mouse LIFEbeat
Syd Mead TRON Mickey Children of the Night
Al Michaels & John Madden Monday Night Mickey Make-A-Wish® Foundation
Kathryn E. Morgan Wonderful World of Mickey ALS Hope Foundation, Philadelphia
Tuck Morgan, Disney Consumer Products Mickey Through the Years Make-A-Wish® Foundation
Ming-Na Mickey and the Nightingale Starlight Children’s Foundation®
Rosie O’Donnell Mickey: In Yellow. Rosie’s Broadway Kids
MEAR ONE Crazy Style Mickey Reaching to Embrace Arts
Shaquille O’Neal Dunk Mouse Real Model Foundation
Fess Parker FrontEAR Tales Alzheimer’s Association of Santa Barbara
Regis Philbin Super Fan Mickey Our Lady of Solace School, Bronx, New York
Raven Clouded Conscience American Diabetes Association
Cody Reynolds, Walt Disney World “I’m going to Disney World” Make-A-Wish® Foundation
Anthony Rietta, Radio Disney Tune In Make-A-Wish® Foundation
Kelly Ripa Big City Mouse Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation
Doris Roberts Mousetaccioli Children Affected by AIDS Foundation
Christy Carlson Romano Ready For Action Children’s Miracle Network®
Breanna Rowlette Lobsta Mickey Boston Arts Academy
Elva Salinas,The Home Depot You Can Do It Homer Fund
Jeff Spohn, Otis College Big Cheese Mickey Otis College of Art and Design
Malcolm Stone, Suddath Relocation Systems Mickey on the Move Dreams Come True
John Travolta Jet Setter Hollywood Education and Literacy Project
Lori Tyminski, Disney Publishing Funny Pages Make-A-Wish® Foundation
Kataneh Vahdani, California Institute of the Arts Filmic Mickey California Institute of the Arts
Mario Vaiana Rockin’ Mickey Newborn Hope, Colorado
Paul Wenzel Mickey Celebrates Our Freedom Childrens Hospital Los Angeles
Dave Willardson Flying Colors #3 Make-A-Wish® Foundation
Wyland Undersea Mickey Wyland Foundation
Paul Wylie IceskatEAR The Jimmy Fund at Dana- Farber Cancer Institute
Two substitute Mickey statues that were part of the auction
NAME OF ARTIST NAME OF STATUE NAME OF CHARITY
NAME OF ARTIST
Luis Fernandez Circle Vision Make-A-Wish® Foundation
G. Byron Peck Liquid Mickey D.C. Commission on the Arts & Humanities
Substitute Mickey statue that was part of the tour but not of the auction
NAME OF ARTIST NAME OF STATUE NAME OF CHARITY
Randi S. Johnson Chocolate Mouse  

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Updated July 26, 2013.