Mar 19, 2011
Mickey Mouse: Runaway Brain
I just wanted to talk about a very interesting short that I remember from back in 1995. The short was deemed incredibly controversial by the people at Disney, and it is rumored that everyone who was involved with the project was fired. Why? The short features a darker side to Mickey Mouse, as he becomes an experiment for a scientist in order to raise some money for a Hawaii trip for himself and Minnie.
The short was originally released as a tie in to a few films of the time, including Pocahontas and A Kid In King Arthur's Court. Shortly after some higher ups caught wind of the short, despite the acclaim it released, it was discontinued from all movie screenings and the short was buried. At 7 minutes, you'll see Mickey playing a Mortal Kombat style game with the Seven Dwarves beating each other up, a tribute to the classic Exorcist poster at 1:53 (Compare to this), a monstrous version of Mickey, and a more modern take on the classic Mouse.
From what I understood, a scene involving Mickey holding a mop and cocking it like a pump action shotgun is what caused the internal backlash against the short, as it was never the intention to show Mickey off as a violent character. It's pretty fascinating how Disney refuses to acknowledge the existence of certain works from their past (Black Cauldron). I always wished they had taken Mickey more in this direction.