'Steamboat Willie' horror move sets production as Mickey enters public domain

Steven LaMorte will direct the untitled horror film

By Gabriella Geisinger 3 Jan 2024

'Steamboat Willie' horror move sets production as Mickey enters public domain
Steamboat Willie; Cr: Disney

Steven LaMorte will direct an untitled horror-comedy based on the Steamboat Willie version of Mickey Mouse, now in public domain.

In the film, a sadistic mouse will torment a group of unsuspecting ferry passengers. Production is set to begin in the spring.

Producers on the untitled horror are working with a legal team to make sure they stay within copyright law.

Disney‘s copyright to Steamboat Willie expired Monday, January 1, along with its right to the original versions of Mickey and Minnie Mouse. However, it retains rights over the more recent and familiar iterations of the characters.

In a statement, LaMorte said: “We are doing our due diligence to make sure there’s no question or confusion of what we’re up to. This is our version of a public domain character. It’s a scary thrill ride with heart and humour, based on this character that everybody knows.”

LaMorte also directed The Mean One, the 2022 horror parody of the Grinch.

Another horror movie based on the iconic character, Mickey’s Mouse Trap directed by Jamie Bailey, has released a trailer and is expected to debut in March.

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