To celebrate 100 years of Disney, Oswald the Lucky Rabbit returns in a brand new animated short, almost 95 since his last appearance. The Walt Disney Animation Studios’ hand-drawn animation team are responsible for the cartoon, which has been directed by Eric Goldberg, the man behind Fantasia and Pocahontas, and produced by Emmy Award-winner Dorothy McKim (Meet the Robinsons, “Prep & Landing”, and “Get a Horse!”
“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.”
Bringing Oswald the Lucky Rabbit back for 100 Years of Wonder makes perfect sense, especially as he was Disney’s first breakout star all the way back in 1927, widely considered to be one of the first characters in animation history to feature a unique personality. “Trolley Troubles” was Oswald’s debut, and since then, he went on to feature in 26 short films until the summer of 1928. In the same year, Disney lost creative control of the rabbit, until Disney CEO Bog Iger made a deal with NBC/Universal in 2006 to get him back. Since then, he’s featured in video games and an animated short, merchandise, and in Disney theme parks worldwide.
Alongside the release of the animated short, Disney is today launching an Oswald the Lucky Rabbit Snapchat lens globally that allows users of the app the opportunity to channel Oswald using AR technology.
You’ll be able to watch the animated short on the official Walt Disney Animation Studios’ YouTube channel.