Today In Disney History ~ June 12th
The Mickey Mouse Club was an American variety television show that aired intermittently from 1955 to 1996. Created by Walt Disney and produced by Walt Disney Productions, the program was first televised from 1955 to 1959 by ABC, featuring a regular but ever-changing cast of mostly teen performers. Reruns were broadcast by ABC on weekday afternoons during the 1958–59 season, right after American Bandstand. The show was revived after its initial 1955–1959 run on ABC, first from 1977 to 1979 for first-run syndication, and airing again exclusively on Disney Channel from 1989 to 1996.
Reruns of the original Mickey Mouse Club had aired on The Disney Channel since its 1983 launch. While the show was popular with younger audiences, Disney Channel executives felt that it had become dated over the years, particularly as it was in black-and-white. Their answer was to create a brand-new version of the Club, one geared toward contemporary audiences. Notably, the all-new “club-members” would wear high-school like Mouseketeer jackets without the iconic Mickey Mouse ears. This show was called The All-New Mickey Mouse Club (also known as “MMC” to fans).
This version of the series is notable for featuring a number of cast members who went on to international success in music and acting, including Tony Lucca, Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, Justin Timberlake, Ryan Gosling, JC Chasez, Nikki DeLoach and Keri Russell.
This was the first version of the club to have any studio audience, a fairly small group. Former Mouseketeer Don Grady guest starred on an episode during the show’s first season. Grady, along with fellow Mouseketeers Annette Funicello, Bobby Burgess, Tommy Cole, Sharon Baird, and Sherry Alberoni were reunited on the 100th episode, during the show’s third season. Funicello would later appear on the show again, in an interview with the Mouseketeer Lindsey Alley.
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