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Clark recounts working with Disney Legend Blaine Gibson, animator Andreas Deja, and master sculptor Rick Terry to create the statue of Walt and Mickey. He recalls bringing to life a younger Walt and bringing the two-dimensional Mickey Mouse into three-dimensions.
One of the easter eggs on the statue is the newspaper in Walt’s pocket. It alludes to Calvin Coolidge being sworn in as president in 1923, when Walt arrived in California.
Blaine Gibson focused on getting Mickey’s “glint” right, which Clark noted refers to the triangle shape in Mickey’s eyes. On the side of Walt’s trunk is a luggage tag from The Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railway, which has a history with Disneyland’s steam trains. The tag numbers on Walt and Mickey’s cases are their birthdays.
Mickey’s suitcase has his initials monogramed on the side, a reference to the 1940 short film “Mr. Mouse Takes a Trip.” Walt’s trunk also features the logo from his Kansas City business card.
A sticker on the trunk refers to Laugh-O-Gram Studio, Walt’s studio in Kansas City. That’s where he made the Alice Comedies, also featured on a sticker. Chicago and Kansas City are both commemorated as well.
And Marceline couldn’t go unrecognized, so Walt’s hometown is immortalized in his “soul.”
The Storytellers statue was recently restored ahead of the opening of Buena Vista Street and Disney California Adventure’s 20th anniversary.