The copyright protection of Mickey Mouse expired on January 1st, leading to a flurry of activity from independent creators.
Two horror movies and a video game featuring the character are in the works, set to be released later this year and in 2022.
The expiration of the copyright protection has allowed Mickey Mouse to appear in new, non-Disney creative works.
A new era for Mickey Mouse has begun, as the earliest iteration of the iconic character enters the public domain. Just two days after the copyright protection of the character expired on January 1st, independent video game creators and film directors have announced two horror movies and a video game featuring the character, while memes are spreading online showing Mickey in absurd and inappropriate scenes.
The quick capitalization on Mickey’s updated copyright status is the most recent example of how iconic pieces of intellectual property can be quickly remixed and recycled in the digital age for art and profit. On Monday, just hours after the 1928 short entered the public domain, a trailer for “Mickey’s Mouse Trap” dropped on YouTube.
The first horror film, “Mickey’s Mouse Trap,” is directed by [director], and is set to be released later this year. The second film, “The House of Mouse,” is directed by [director], and is set to be released in 2022. Both films will feature Mickey Mouse in a horror setting, with the former focusing on a haunted house and the latter focusing on a mysterious cult.
The video game, “Mickey’s Mansion,” is an adventure game in which players must explore a spooky mansion and solve puzzles to escape. It is being developed by [developer] and is expected to be released later this year.
With the expiration of the copyright protection, Mickey Mouse is now free to appear in new, non-Disney creative works. This has led to a flurry of activity, with independent creators quickly capitalizing on the opportunity to create new works featuring the iconic character.