Veteran Disney voiceover talent Wayne Allwine, who provided the voice of Mickey Mouse for the past 32 years, died May 18 in Los Angeles from complications to diabetes. He was 62.
He first lent his voice to Disney’s world-renowned cartoon mouse in 1977 for animated segments of “The New Mickey Mouse Club.” He went on to provide Mickey’s voice for such toons as “Mickey’s Christmas Carol” and “Who Framed Roger Rabbit.”
Allwine and his wife, Russi Taylor, longtime voice of Minnie Mouse, both received the Disney Legend kudo in 2008.
“Wayne not only gave voice to the character of Mickey but gave him a heart and soul as well,” said Roy E. Disney, director emeritus and consultant for Disney. “He did an incredible job bringing emotion, humor and appeal to the character, and superbly carried on the tradition originated by my Uncle Walt …”
Allwine got his start at the Mouse House in 1966 when he first took a job in the mail room. From there, he worked briefly in wardrobe, then moved to audio post production where he worked under mentor, Jimmy Macdonald.
During the 1980s, Allwine worked in sound effects editing on Disney’s film and TV productions including “Splash,” “Three Men and a Baby” and Steven Spielberg’s “Amazing Stories,” for which he received an Emmy in 1986.
Born in Glendale, Calif., Allwine was seven years old when he made his first TV appearance as one of the children interviewed by Art Linkletter on his “House Party” program. While still in high school, he formed his own acoustic music group, The International Singers, and went on to record with such singers as Dobie Gray and Bobby Vinton.
He is survived by his wife, two daughters, three sons and a grandson.
Donations may be made to Mattel Children’s Hospital UCLA.