Two animation professionals based in Kansas City need to brush up a bit on their Disney history.
An article published yesterday in the Kansas City Star, highlighting that city's growing animation industry, started off almost immediately with this quote from KC businessman Bruce Branit: "I often have mentioned to people I work with in Los Angeles that my office is only a few blocks from where Walt Disney drew Mickey Mouse for the first time.” Later in the article, Dylan Dietz of the Midwest Association of Professional Animators speaks of Walt Disney, saying, "We are proud that he started here and that Mickey Mouse was designed here.”
While their recognition of Disney's Kansas City legacy is certainly appropriate, the history they are referencing is, well . . . wrong. Sorry gentlemen, but you can't claim a Kansas City birthplace for Mickey Mouse. Walt Disney and Ub Iwerks were firmly located in southern California when they created the iconic character in 1928.
While Disney's Alice Comedies were distinctly rooted in Missouri, both Oswald the Rabbit and Mickey Mouse originated in the 2719 Hyperion Studios near Hollywood. Walt's Kansas City history is notable and important on so many levels, but he in fact left that fine city for California some five years before Mickey Mouse would have been drawn for the first time.
Explore the 2719 Hyperion archives: