With my daughters birthday coming up, we were searching for a fun theme and some characters to attend her party. Naturally, Mickey Mouse is a favorite of hers so I looked into having him show up.
I didn’t come as a surprise that there is no perfect Mickey Mouse for hire. I understand why Disney would not want to sell or license a sanctioned Mickey Mouse consume for personal appearances. For one thing it takes away from the special nature of knowing Mickey lives at Disneyland/World and you have to go there (or to a Disney On Ice show at an arena near you) to see him. Also the likelihood of some random ‘Mickey’ doing something inappropriate or downright illegal would be constant worry for the company – it just isn’t worth it for them.
Even if Bob Iger doesn’t approve, you can get a mouse to attend your kids birthday party. Search Craigslist or do a Google search for “Mickey Mouse character for birthday” and options will pop up. But none are ideal. Here is a list of the biggest problems I have found:
Skinny Mickey – no one wants a skinny Mickey, the mouse is chunky and that’s the way we like him
Creepy Mickey – you know Mickey when you see him, if his features are off, even a toddler can tell and will call him and you out on it
Dirty Mickey – those costumes are a mess, Disney probably dry cleans them daily and swaps them out on some regular interval, no so much the case for small-time characters for hire companies who likely store the costumes in their garage or car trunk and rarely clean them or buy new ones
Legal Technicality Mickey – none of the companies that will dispatch Skinny/Creepy/Dirty Mickey to you will actually call him “Mickey Mouse” out of fear of being sued by The Kingdom, they usually have a name like “Mr. Mouse” and it just cheapens the whole experience
So what did we do instead of getting the mouse? We hired Queen Elsa. Yes, there are lots of the same issues, with her, but a teenage girl singing Frozen songs and doing face painting seems a whole lot less creepy.