Wayne Allwine (1947-2009)

Wayne Allwine, the official voice of Mickey Mouse, the third person in history to play the character in various movies and TV shows, has passed away.

According to Wikipedia, Allwine’s first appearance as Mickey was voicing the animated lead-ins for The New Mickey Mouse Club in 1977. His first appearance as Mickey for a theatrical release was in the 1983 featurette Mickey’s Christmas Carol and he has provided the voice for Mickey Mouse ever since. He was married to Russi Taylor, the current voice of Minnie Mouse. Allwine was also a sound effects editor for various feature films. Allwine died on Monday, due to complications from diabetes. He was 62.

UPDATE: Animation Guild rep Steve Hulett has written his memories of working with Wayne Allwine when they were both traffic boys at Disney in the mid-1960s.

Below is an interview with Allwine and Taylor from the Walt Disney Treasures box set Mickey Mouse in Living Color: Volume Two.


  • Geoff. W.

    Truly a sad loss.
    I’m curious how his replacement will sound.

  • http://www.forthebirdsblog.blogspot.com Michael J. Ruocco

    I met Wayne & his wife Russi some time ago. At first glance, he looked like a mean & tough biker dude. Then when I heard Mickey’s voice come out of his mouth, I felt this immense feeling of not only relief, but joy, sentiment & love.

    In many ways, Mickey was one of the major reasons why I wanted to become an animator in the first place. Watching & listening to Mickey as a child helped me get through the toughest times I had during my childhood, & Wayne’s immense contribution to Mickey’s legacy not only benefited the well-being of my own childhood, but to millions of people across the world. He brought so much joy to so many children through his voice.

    He was such a kind, wonderful man & it’s very hard to come to terms with the fact that he’s actually gone. I, along with so many others, will miss him dearly.

    http://forthebirdsblog.blogspot.com/2009/05/wayne-allwine-1947-2009.html

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jj-3jJ4otfE Ron

    What a great clip! How sad that he’s gone. Awesome too that Mickey was married to Minnie in real life! I never knew that. I wonder who’s going to do the voice now. I wouldn’t be surprised if John Lasseter took over that duty. I’m not kidding either. I bet he could do a good job. His voice almost sounds similar to Wayne’s and it’d be appropriate for him since Walt did it first.

  • Darin M

    No way. Wow, that’s a hell of a thing.

  • http://mymedicatedlife.blogspot.com/ Bitter Animator

    Aw man, I was just watching Mickey Mouse Clubhouse yesterday and thinking how Mickey’s laugh bugged the hell out of me (it was the one with Goofy’s cat and he does that same ‘haaw’ about six times in a row) and now I feel really bad for that.

    I’m not really a big fan of the modern Mickey Mouse stuff (though that Hot Dog song is catchy) but, still, this is sad news. Allwine did have a warmth to his voice that children loved. It’s amazing at 62 how young his voice sounded too.

    Like Ron says, it is awesome that he was married to Minnie in real life but, somehow, picturing the characters, that makes it all the more sad.

    I can’t help picturing a lonely Minnie, without her Mickey.

    Condolences to his friends and family. Wayne Allwine now has a place in animation history that will never be forgotten.

  • Saturnome

    Aouch! This comes out from nowhere. It was a total fairytale story that Mickey and Minnie were married.

  • http://daryl-rhystaylor.blogspot.com Daryl T

    That is truly sad. And Mickey is such a difficult voice to do, it will be very hard to find a replacement. Poor man.

  • Greg M.

    Very sorry to hear about Wayne’s passing! He kept the flame alive!

  • Ange

    I seriously can’t stop crying. I feel like I’ve lost a best friend somehow.

  • Christina

    I cried when I heard this, it is so sad:’(

  • http://awprunes.wordpress.com Larry Levine

    Very sad news, condolences to his family,

  • Sara

    This is very sad news. Voice actors so seldom get the recognition they deserve, even those who plat characters known the world over. Though if millions of kids hear Wayne Allwine’s voice and never think of anything but Mickey, maybe that’s the way it should be. Some of those kids will grow up to really love animation and learn about all of the men who voiced the Mouse. But to everyone else, it’s just Mickey.

    I wonder if Mr. Allwine knew how ill he was and if he was able to start coaching a replacement before he passed away. It just doesn’t seem right that the next voice of Mickey should be denied the wisdom of the previous one straight from the source.

    My sincere condolences to Ms. Taylor and the rest of Mr. Allwine’s family and friends.

  • AdrianC

    NOOOOOOO!

    That “No” was NOT meant to be funny. To put it mildly, I am sincerely bummed out. What a terrible loss.

  • Fred Sparrman

    “I’m curious how his replacement will sound.”

    I’m betting on “high and squeaky”.

  • http://ramapithblog.blogspot.com David Gerstein

    About the third time I heard Allwine’s Mickey sardonically greet his rival—”Hello, Mortimer!”—on Mickey Mouseworks/House of Mouse, I realized Allwine was mimicking the precise cadence of Jerry Seinfeld: “Hello, Newman!” Priceless.
    At his best, Allwine enabled Mickey to act believably in a way he hadn’t since Walt left the role. It’s a great pity that the opportunity was never taken during Allwine’s lifetime to do a comics-based Mickey adventure cartoon.

  • William

    Wayne did an extraordinary job of filling in for the boss. Disney has lost a true legend, but I am sure his replacement will be in keeping with Waynes own humbleness and love for the character. My deepest sympathies for Russi and the rest of his family.

  • Mel

    Wayne learned the voice from Jim MacDonald, who learned it directly from Walt. Wonder if Disney had the foresight to have Wayne tutor anyone? Just sayin’.

  • http://www.edwardr.theatricana.com Edward R. Cox

    Truly a very sad day. I pray that Russi can get through all this. I can still remember the joy when the 2 of them managed to take over the voices. Both of them were so full of life and love. A perfect pair to voice Mickey and Minnie! All my sympathy goes to Russi, the family and the entire Disney community. Wayne shall be missed in the extreme!

  • http://mickeystrailer.com Tommy

    My thoughts go to Russi Taylor and the rest of Wayne’s family, very sad news today.

  • http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=052C631F61EE2838 Iain

    I feel as if I lost a childhood icon. I was raised with Wayne Allwine’s voice when I was little, and I think both Walt (starting from the beginning), MacDonald (starting with “Fun and Fancy Free”), and Allwine (starting from “Mickey’s Christmas Carol”) are great Mickeys.

    Rest in piece, “Mickey 3″.

  • http://invaderpetblog.blogspot.com Brandon

    It’s a common misconception that he was the 3rd voice of Mickey Mouse. Yes, he was the 3rd OFFICIAL voice, but people forget that Carl Stalling and Chlarence Nash bothe voiced Mickey at one point.

    Eiother way, RIP Wayne Allwine. I didn’t know he had diabetes.

  • Orville

    ‘Voice actors so seldom get the recognition they deserve?’ Compared to animators, hardly.

  • William

    Very sorry to hear this news. Besides the simple charm of doing that famous falsetto so well, I think Wayne also gave Mickey’s vocal quality more underpinning and dexterity than perhaps either man before him. He will be truly missed.

  • http://joeyblog.com Joey Ellis

    Very sad indeed. I had no idea that Russi and Wayne were married. Very special.

  • Wife #3

    How sad that his own sons, Josh and Chris Allwine, had to find out about their father’s passing via the internet. Have a heart Russi. How much trouble would it be to pick up the phone and call? RIP Wayne. I know you wouldn’t have wanted it this way.

  • Tomi

    It,s very sad to hear this, not only because he truly was true professional, a role model, especially to someone like me whom dreams of voice-acting career, gifted person, but also loving husband and father, and seemed to be such a nice and gentle soul.
    I can only share my deebest condolunces to his dear wife Russi, his Family and his fellow Voice Actors whom worked with him all these years.
    God rest his spirit. He,s work will never be forgotten.

  • http://Mr.FunsBlog Floyd Norman

    I’m so sorry to hear about Wayne’s passing.

    With each passing day the charm and sweetness of the Disney Studio is slowly being lost. I fear some day, it will be gone altogether.

  • Keith Bryant

    Rest in peace Wayne. May the next Mickey bring us as much joy as you have.

  • Sara

    Orville> I think if you mentioned the names of all but the highest profile voice actors and nearly any animators to the average guy on the street without any context, both groups would be met with “Who?”

    I’ll agree that there are fewer animators known to the general public than voice actors, but I don’t think it’s a huge margin. Unless his death garners some major media attention, I’m guessing most people will continue to have no clue who Wayne Allwine was, even if they know his work.

  • http://toonsntunes.blogspot.com/ Marci Cameron

    I just found out through the WDWMAGIC.COM forums here:
    http://forums.wdwmagic.com/showpost.php?p=3534762&postcount=2770
    I’ll really miss him. He was Mickey for me, more so than Walt Disney himself. (Uh-oh, I’m gonna get a lot of hate comments for that one from Walt fans.)

  • Michael Tanzer

    I hope Brock Baker will be the new voice of Mickey Mouse

  • http://dailygrail.com/blog/8389 red pill junkie

    Rest in Peace.

  • Inkan1969

    My goodness. I had no idea that he was ill. My condolences to Russi. :-(

  • Stan

    Two words: Gilbert Gottfried!

  • Danny R. Santos

    I’m very sad to hear about his passing, truly a big loss for Disney. To bad Wayne only did voice over for three movies, four if you count “Who framed Roger Rabbit”. Rest in peace Wayne. My condolence to Russi.

  • http://weirdocorner.blogspot.com Eric Noble

    I’m very sorry to hear this. I always like Wayne’s rendition of Mickey. It was always cute and appealing. My condolences to Mrs. Allwine and the whole family. Well, at least he’s with Walt and Jimmy now.

  • Jacques DuLong

    What a tragedy to lose this talented man and warm-hearted friend in the prime of his life. As an audio engineer and voice director for Mattel Toys, I worked with Wayne and Russi countless times from the start of their Mickey and Minnie careers. I remember at one of the first sessions showing him an Otari tape machine ad from a British magazine that stated, “For 95 pounds, Mickey Mouse will never bother you again.” (it pitch-corrected sped-up playback). Smiling, and in Mickey’s voice, Wayne said, “Awww! Poor Mickey!”, while the Disney rep fumed and threatened to sue.

    From the time they first met, Wayne and Russi were inseparable. Whether or not they were both being recorded on a particular day, they would show up together and attentively watch the other perform. As can be seen in the interview video, they cared deeply for maintaining the integrity and art of their characters.

    I was an AFTRA voice actor, and at Mattel I used to perform various Disney characters, including Mickey, for in-house product demos. Still, I had far too much respect for Wayne to ever do the Mouse in his presence, no matter how tempting it was.

    My love and condolences to Russi, and her and Wayne’s families in this sad, difficult time.

  • Pedro Nakama

    Sad news. I met Wayne years ago at an ASIFA event. He was nice and friendly just like Mickey Mouse.

  • Ross W

    Few things could have pleased me more than when my 1 year old son became a fan of Mickey Mouse, thanks to the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. Subsequently, he has received many talking Mickey toys and CD collections, so my house has been filled with the voice of Mr. Allwine for a couple of years now. I often have thought he must have incredibly busy recording the voice for all that media. He was a real talent, and I know my family will continue to enjoy his voice for some time to come. My condolences to his family, and the best of luck to his replacement.

  • Jerry F.
  • Norman

    Up in heaven Walt, Jim and Wayne are putting together a show called “Three Guys Named Mickey.”

  • Genene Valletta

    May God be with Wayne’s wife Russi (Minnie) Her Mickey is in heaven with Uncle Walt watching over her and us.

  • Jeremy

    I had the privilege to know Wayne when I first started working in the business. He was such a brilliant and funny man, and the two of us had the wildest times when he wasn’t doing foley, and I wasn’t cutting sound effects. I have so many funny stories, many of which came back to mind as I heard about his untimely death. My condolences to his wife and children.

  • http://www.largest.blogfa.com iraqi journalist

    of cource it is a very sad news

  • http://amymebberson.blogspot.com Amy Mebberson

    Whoa.

    Wasn’t expecting THAT in a busy day on the Brew!

    That’s so sad, what a dreadful loss :(

  • http://andynortonuk.spaces.live.com Andy

    I don’t know what more fascinating from that interview: seeing Russi Taylor in the flesh; seeing archive footage of Allwine and ‘Jimmy’ doing the voice; or the fact that it diverted into Jimmy’s legacy as a sound designer.
    That was an inspirational interview on someone who learnt his sound design skills from Jimmy, and did a few projects with those skills (according to AWN he worked on projects ranging from Star Trek 5 to Frankenweenie.)
    It makes me hope that the next voice of Mickey has some of these sound designer qualities about them, rather then just a soulless impressionist.
    Wayne, I might have not meet you, but I have certainly heard you over the years. Rest in peace.

  • Ujunnguaq Josefsen

    Sad sad, sad… i loved him so much since i was 9. Now i’m 22. Thinking about his family and, im so sorry…

    Like his voice from Greenland and going miss him..

  • http://theanimationinquirer.blogspot.com/ Richard

    I’ve heard Allwine say something about who will be “Mickey #4″. Now, that question is true: WHO-I ask you-WHO WILL BE MICKEY #4??? I’ve heard of Wikipedia that Billy West will be Mickey #4, but I’m not sure. Who will it be?

  • Tinkerbell

    I don’t think Wayne had anything to do with the replacement for Mickey Mouse. There have been rumors that Disney has found his replacement and they did not go through the normal voice actor channels. This person is supposed to be extrodinary and unknown???!!!! I wonder if they will make a big announcement?

  • motomom

    extrordinary and unknown!? how exciting and delightful.
    i am sure Disney has found their man/mouse. teehee

  • http://www.wolfmanjaq.com Jack Quevedo

    Jeez… it’s October and I’m just hearing about this now? I’m so out of the loop…Mr. Allwine was extremely good at voicing Mickey. I’m in shock and can’t believe it. My heart goes out to all his family and freinds..