One Disney Park recently added a new attraction for Guests in celebration of Disney’s 100th anniversary, and there’s simply no better attraction for such an occasion.
Disney’s 100th anniversary celebration kicked off in January, and it’s been in full swing ever since. The celebration is slowly finding its way into every single Disney Park around the world, beginning with Disneyland Resort in California and moving on to include the Walt Disney World Resort following the wrap-up of the Central Florida Parks’ 50th anniversary celebration, which began in October 2021.
The Disney100 celebration continues to make its way across Disney’s theme park resorts here and abroad. The celebration includes new food and drink offerings in the parks, commemorative and collectible merchandise, new signage in the parks, including some fairly problematic signage at Disneyland California, changes to structural icons in the parks, and new decorations.
Disney has even added new 100th anniversary celebratory attractions and experiences for Guests visiting the parks this year. And while the parks are offering a variety of new foods, merch, and experiences during Disney’s centennial celebration, one new addition takes the prize for being the most fitting, most iconic, and most nostalgic new experience at the parks, and it’s inspired by Walt Disney’s earliest years, his struggles, and a Disney icon steeped in complicated history.
Oswald the Lucky Rabbit was created by Walt Disney and animator Ub Iwerks for Universal. In all, the dynamic Disney duo made 26 cartoons featuring Oswald, but a contract loophole uprooted the seemingly unlucky rabbit from Disney and transplanted him to Universal for good in 1927. From there, Universal carried on with the production of “Oswald” cartoons, and Walt was forced to move on. All was not lost, however, as the unfortunate event ultimately allowed Walt to create Mickey Mouse in 1928 after processing the loss of his little rabbit.
It would be nearly 80 years before Oswald and Disney were reunited, thanks to a very creative trade and some fancy footwork that finally landed the lucky little rabbit back where he belonged all along. In early 2006, it was Oswald who played the leading role in getting himself back home so that NBC could have Emmy Award-winning sportscaster Al Michaels after holding a post on ESPN’s Monday Night Football.
Since then, Oswald has made his way into a brand-new short, created for Disney’s 100th anniversary celebration. Appropriately titled simply, Oswald The Lucky Rabbit, the all-new short is directed by animator Eric Goldberg and produced by Dorothy McKim. You can see the short here, but Disney superfans will want to enjoy the Parks’ newest Oswald-themed experience that’s perfect for the company’s centennial celebration.
Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, Disney’s very first animated character, is now meeting and greeting Guests. Fans can pose for photos with the iconic Disney bunny, and Oswald even signs autographs, gives hugs, and shoots the breeze with Guests. Earlier this year, he was greeting Guests at Disneyland Resort in California. But this is a brand-new addition to one Disney Park.
There’s only one drawback. Guests who want to have this experience and don’t live in China will have to jump on a plane and make the journey to Shanghai Disney Resort, as Oswald is currently only feeling lucky in the Red Dragon. That’s the downside. But the upside is that we can’t think of a more fitting way to honor Walt during the 100th anniversary celebration than with a meet-and-greet experience with the first character he ever created.