Disney Buys Fox From Murdoch

After months of speculation, the BBC has confirmed that 21st Century Fox’s entertainment assets (including Marilyn’s many films for Twentieth) have  been bought by Disney for $52.4bn (£39 billion.) Previous owner Rupert Murdoch purchased Fox in 1985.

Marilyn, Mickey and ‘Innocence Lost’

This unsettling painting – in which Marilyn’s image is merged with Mickey Mouse – is part of  ‘A Loss of Innocence’, the new exhibition from Costa Rican artist John Paul Fauves, at the Meir Art Gallery in Antwerp, Belgium, Forbes reports. You can view more of Fauves’ work here.

“For me, inspiration comes in a few different forms – but I am constantly perplexed and intrigued with the human population that surrounds me on a daily basis. The inception of this theme ‘A Loss Of Innocence’ stems from watching my son grow up and discover the physical and social aspects of the world. As he ages from a toddler to a young boy, I’ve held onto the idea of his naivete and his inevitable introduction to the dangers of the world. This is why the iconic ‘Mickey Mouse’ is used so heavily throughout the series. Viewing this symbol outside the realm of Disney makes the viewer engage with the familiar image in an unsettling and heavily abstracted background, forcing them to re-think their relationship with the beloved character.”

Marilyn, Mickey and Tinkerbell

Marilyn with Mickey Rooney at the ‘Emperor Waltz’ premiere, 1948

Jim Korkis writes on Mouse Planet of a tall story spun by Mickey Rooney, claiming it was he who inspired Mickey Mouse. In fact, Walt Disney’s wife suggested the name.

Of course, Uncle Walt was not averse to stretching the truth for publicity purposes either.  It was he who started the rumour that Tinkerbell – the mischievous fairy in Peter Pan – was based on Marilyn Monroe, when the real model was a little-known starlet, Margaret Kerry.

Mickey Rooney, who starred in one of Marilyn’s early films, The Fireball (1950), has also claimed that he suggested Monroe’s name. This is incorrect – Norma Jeane took the name in 1946, after a discussion with talent scout Ben Lyon.

Marilyn had known Mickey since about 1948, when she accompanied him to the premiere of Billy Wilder’s The Emperor Waltz. It was a studio custom to set up actors on ‘dates’ for publicity purposes.

Rooney was dining at the Villa Nova restaurant in early 1952 when Marilyn had her first date with Joe DiMaggio, and even interrupted the couple to ask for Joe’s autograph.

The tables were turned when Rooney was invited to a party in Marilyn’s honour that summer, and, along with Sammy Davis Jr and others, joined Ray Anthony’s band to play ‘My Marilyn’.