James MacDonald

Actor, Sound effects artist, Drummer
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 ... Read more »
Born: 05/19/1906

Filmography

Actor (6)

The Rescuers 1977 (Movie)

of Evinrude (Voice)

Noah's Ark 1959 (Movie)

(Voice)

Alice in Wonderland 1950 (Movie)

of the Dormouse (Voice)

Cinderella 1950 (Movie)

(Voice)

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs 1943 (Movie)

(Voice)

Riff-Raff (Movie)

Funeral Director (Actor)
Sound (2)

A Bryk at a Time 2012 - 2013 (Tv Show)

Sound Recordist

The Black Hole 1979 (Movie)

(Sound Effects)

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.

Relationships

Roberta Macdonald

Wife
they were married for 50 years

Milestones

1982

Assisted Disney musical director Irwin Kostal with the digital rerecording of "Fantasia"

1977

Provided the voice of Evinrude, the dragonfly, in "The Rescuers"

1976

"Retired" from active status at the Disney studio

1951

Performed the voice of the Dormouse in "Alice in Wonderland"

1950

Provided the voices for Jaq and Gus, two mice in "Cinderella", Disney's biggest hit until "Mary Poppins"

1946

Succeeded Walt Disney as the voice of Mickey Mouse for Disney short subjects beginning with "Mickey and the Beanstalk"

1937

First major credit, "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs"; yodeled for the dwarves, sneezed for Sneezy, and whistled for the calliope

1934

Visited the Disney studio with his band to record a soundtrack for a Mickey Mouse cartoon

Became the sound effects "wizard" for the Disney studio creating sounds and voices for numerous shorts and features

Was working as a drummer in a cruise ship band when he first met Walt Disney

Bonus Trivia

.

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."

SIMILAR ARTICLES