Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!


Long lost Disney film found in Japan

collectaholliccollectahollic Member Posts: 890 ✭✭✭ Daybiller

One of Walt Disney's earliest films has just been discovered in Japan. 

An anime historian had the cartoon for 70 years before he realised it was one of seven lost films.

The two-minute short features Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, a precursor to Mickey Mouse. 

Yasushi Watanabe, 84, bought the film from a toy wholesaler in Osaka when he was a teenager, paying only ¥500 (£3.45 at current exchange rates).

Originally called Neck & Neck, the 16mm cartoon was tagged with the name Mickey Manga Spide (Mickey Cartoon Speedy), and remained in Mr Watanabe's personal collection for 70 years.

A total of 27 cartoons were made, but the anthropomorphic rabbit became the centre an intellectual property dispute, with Universal Studios wrestling the rights to the character in 1928.

Images and more details on the BBC page below:


  • CharlieCharlie Member, Administrator, Moderator, Game Master Posts: 6,806 admin
    I always enjoyed that Disney eventually got back Oswald.  Did you know they actually traded a sports commentator from ESPN to NBC to get him back???
    That second mouse in the bowl of cream we call life...
  • DavidDavid Member Posts: 10,308 admin
    Cool little story.

    Oswald was originally designed and animated by Ub Iwerks who worked with Disney. When Walt's dispute with his employer happened Ub joined him and it was Walt who came up with Mickey Mouse and mocked up a design but it was Ub who fine tuned it to become the Mickey Mouse. Ub and Walt later would have a falling out and Ub would end up leaving...

    Oswald himself is alive and well, and despite his age is obviously a good actor because he continues to get roles...most recently in Zootopia.

Sign In or Register to comment.