Donald Fauntleroy Duck is 77 years old.
Donald Duck, the toon with an attitude, is 77 this year. Been there done that, from a commando “Sky Trooper” to hosting his own television show “Quack Palk” in a Hawaiian shirt, the popular cartoon character from Walt Disney has been a favourite.
Be it his laziness or his bouts of temper as he walks in his awkward gait mumbling in his squeaky yet adorable style, Donald Fauntleroy Duck has been a favourite with his trademark yellow bill and webbed feet, sky blue sailor suit and hat teamed with a striking red bow. Did you know he also put on his adventurous best in the comic book “Donald Duck Finds Pirate Gold?”
A toon with a good heart despite bad temper, Donald Duck made his debut with “The Wise Little Hen” in 1934.
The story, based on the fairy tale “The Little Red Hen”, had Donald and his friend Peter pig spread a lesson on hard work with a little help from the hen, a short film that introduced the Peking duck to the world.
Animator Dick Lundy gave Donald a makeover in Orphan's Benefit that had Donald Duck share stage with Mickey Mouse. Donald won the hearts of the audience with his rendition of “Mary Had a Litttle Lamb” and “Little Boy Blue.” Since then there was no looking back for showman Donald Duck.
With enmity rife between Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck then, Donald soon surpassed Mickey Mouse in popularity and in terms of the number of toon flicks hitting the silver screen.
From being the mascot of Oregon University, to the first cartoon to receive an Academy Award to being honoured with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in Los Angeles, he has had it all. Donald received the 2,257th star on his 70th birthday in 2004 when the then Disney CEO, Michael Eisner, said, "he has brought tremendous joy and laughter to people around the world, with his charm and explosive temper-tantrums. I think everyone would agree that Donald, in one way or another, represents a piece of all of us facing life boldly against all odds.”
Over the years Donald Duck has continued to work his charm with his family, girlfriend Daisy Duck and his three noisy nephews Louie, Dewey and Huey, and of course his ultra rich but miser Uncle Scrooge. From comic books to computer animated series, Donald Duck has re invented himself in sync with technology.
Donald Duck merchandise- bags, pencil cases and lunch boxes, scrap books, watches and more are a rage. Despite the flood of new toons, Donald Duck continues to have that special place in our hearts.
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