Disney trades ABC sportscaster for Walt's original 'toon
Written by Robert Niles
Here's a bizarre story for Disney fans out there.Tweet
Disney's just traded sportscaster Al Michaels for the rights to, among other things, Walt's original character, Oswald the Lucky Rabbit.
Michaels, long the voice of ABC's "Monday Night Football" is leaving the network to join Universal-owned NBC's "Sunday Night Football" in the fall. But he was under contract to Disney-owned ABC, so the network extracted some concessions from Universal to release him.
Most of the deal involves Disney-owned ESPN getting the rights to air more highlights from NBC-covered sports events, such as Notre Dame football. But Universal also threw in the rights to Oswald, a character that Universal owned from back in the day before Walt Disney formed his own studio.
Walt drew Oswald for a series of cartoon shorts distributed by Universal. But Walt didn't own the character's rights. So when Walt decided to set out on his own, he created a new character by shortening Oswald's ears and putting shoes on his feet.
And thus, Mickey Mouse was born.
This article has been archived and is no longer accepting comments.
Previous article: The flabbiest place on Earth?
How to save money on a Disney World trip
Insider's Pick: You can afford that Walt Disney World family vacation of your dreams. Get started with 102 Ways to Save Money For and At Walt Disney World, a great guide to planning an affordable trip to the Vacation Capital of the World. Why wait? The sooner you start saving, the sooner you and your family will be enjoying your vacation!
Top U.S. Theme Parks
Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom
Other Top International Parks
Features, News and Advice
"Stories from a Theme Park Insider"
Theme Park Insider Guidebooks