Mickey's Orphans

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Mickey's Orphans
Mickey's Orphans.jpg
"Aw, isn't it adorable?"
Directed byBurt Gillett
Produced byWalt Disney
StarringWalt Disney
Marcellite Garner
Animation byJohnny Cannon, Joe D'Igalo, Norm Ferguson, Clyde Geronimi, Hardie Gramatky, David Hand, Jack King, Dick Lundy, Hamilton Luske, Tom Palmer, Ben Sharpsteen[1]
Color processBlack-and-white
Distributed byColumbia Pictures
Release date
  • December 9, 1931 (1931-12-09)
Running time
7 minutes
CountryUnited States

Mickey's Orphans is a 1931 American animated short film produced by Walt Disney Productions and released by Columbia Pictures. The cartoon takes place during Christmas time and stars Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, and Pluto, who take in a group of disruptive kittens. It is directed by Burt Gillett and features the voices of Walt Disney as Mickey and Marcellite Garner as Minnie.[1]

The film was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film at the 5th Academy Awards in 1932, the award's inaugural year. It lost to another Disney film, Flowers and Trees, Disney's first color film.[2]

Mickey's Orphan's is a remake of the 1927 Oswald the Lucky Rabbit cartoon Empty Socks, the two shorts being the oldest Disney cartoons with a Christmas theme. The latter was considered lost, but an almost complete copy, missing about one minute, was found in National Library of Norway in December 2014.[3]


A hooded figure walks past a church on a snowy night carrying a covered basket. The Christmas carol "Silent Night" is heard coming from the church, setting the time of year. The figure then approaches Mickey Mouse's house and peeks in the window: Minnie is playing "Silent Night" on an organ, Mickey is decorating a Christmas tree, and Pluto is peacefully sleeping by the fire. The figure then leaves the basket on Mickey's doorstep, rings the bell, and walks away.

Pluto carries the basket inside and discovers it is loaded with kittens, evidently orphaned. Mickey and Minnie are at first charmed by the kittens, but the kittens soon prove to be a nuisance. Nevertheless, Mickey and Minnie are determined to make the kittens welcome. Mickey leaves the room momentarily and soon returns dressed as Santa Claus with a bag full of toys. The kittens remove the contents, the majority of which are various implements of destruction such as saws, hammers, and toy weapons. The kittens go to work and destroy the piano and other furniture. Finally Mickey and Minnie reveal their Christmas tree, but the kittens remove all the decorations and foliage.



  1. ^ a b Mickey's Orphans Archived 2016-08-25 at the Wayback Machine at The Encyclopedia of Disney Animated Shorts
  2. ^ Academy Awards Database[permanent dead link]
  3. ^ Denne 87 år gamle Disneyfilmen trodde man var tapt for alltid, nrk.no, 11 December 2014 (in Norwegian)
  4. ^ Disney's Best of 1931-1948[permanent dead link] at The Encyclopedia of Disney Animated Shorts
  5. ^ Mickey's Orphans on IMDb
  6. ^ Vintage Mickey at Amazon.com

External links[edit]