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James Macdonald

James Macdonald

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Also Known As: John James Macdonald Died: February 1, 1991
Born: May 19, 1906 Cause of Death: apparent heart failure
Birth Place: Profession: actor, sound effects artist, drummer

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Legendary Disney sound effects wizard, discovered by Walt Disney wile drumming with a cruise ship band, who was responsible for creating and assembling one of the largest and most impressive sound effects libraries in motion picture history. Also an accomplished voice actor, Macdonald succeeded Walt Disney as the voice of Mickey Mouse from 1946 until the early 1980s, when he passed the torch to his protege, Wayne Allwine. Over the course of his nearly five-decade association with the studio, Macdonald provided voices and sounds for numerous Disney characters. His improvisational coups included using dried peas in a wood barrel to simulate rainfall and blowing through a condom to mimic the buzzing of a bee.

Legendary Disney sound effects wizard, discovered by Walt Disney wile drumming with a cruise ship band, who was responsible for creating and assembling one of the largest and most impressive sound effects libraries in motion picture history. Also an accomplished voice actor, Macdonald succeeded Walt Disney as the voice of Mickey Mouse from 1946 until the early 1980s, when he passed the torch to his protege, Wayne Allwine. Over the course of his nearly five-decade association with the studio, Macdonald provided voices and sounds for numerous Disney characters. His improvisational coups included using dried peas in a wood barrel to simulate rainfall and blowing through a condom to mimic the buzzing of a bee.

Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

1.
 Rescuers, The (1977) Voice Of Evinrude
2.
 Alice in Wonderland (1951) [Voice of] Dormouse
3.
 Cinderella (1950) Voices of Jaq, Gus-Gus and Bruno
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

:
Was working as a drummer in a cruise ship band when he first met Walt Disney
1934:
Visited the Disney studio with his band to record a soundtrack for a Mickey Mouse cartoon
1937:
First major credit, "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs"; yodeled for the dwarves, sneezed for Sneezy, and whistled for the calliope
:
Became the sound effects "wizard" for the Disney studio creating sounds and voices for numerous shorts and features
1946:
Succeeded Walt Disney as the voice of Mickey Mouse for Disney short subjects beginning with "Mickey and the Beanstalk"
1950:
Provided the voices for Jaq and Gus, two mice in "Cinderella", Disney's biggest hit until "Mary Poppins"
1951:
Performed the voice of the Dormouse in "Alice in Wonderland"
1976:
"Retired" from active status at the Disney studio
1977:
Provided the voice of Evinrude, the dragonfly, in "The Rescuers"
1982:
Assisted Disney musical director Irwin Kostal with the digital rerecording of "Fantasia"
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Notes

From The Hollywood Reporter obituary (February 7, 1991): "He used a wooden berry basket that he crumbled to get the effect of falling timber, springs in a box mounted on roller-skate wheels to simulate a railroad car and dried peas in a wooden keg for rainfall. He also was a master of improvisation. He once blew through a condom to create the sound of a buzzing bee."

Companions close complete companion listing

wife:
Roberta Macdonald. They were married for 50 years.

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