Along with his key role on the series Mickey à Travers les Siècles [Mickey Through Time], Pierre Nicolas’ other claim to fame is the creation of the iconic “Mickey crying” cover for the December 1966 Paris Match magazine issue which discussed Walt Disney’s passing.

Didier Ghez: Can you tell me something about the events that surrounded the creation of your famous Paris Match cover?

Pierre Nicolas: It’s relatively simple. The day that Walt Disney passed away, I was called by Armand Bigle (who was the person in charge of Disney in Europe) to his offices on the Champs-Elysées. He put me in touch with people from Paris Match who took me to the office on rue Pierre-Charron where Paris Match was published. There the redaction committee met. It included Thérond, the director of the editorial board; Pigneau, who did the layout; Bourgeas, the art director; Croizard, the associate editor; Collette Porlier; and Mrs. De Saint Edvire. We discussed for a while about what should be done, because they wanted to do something about the death of Walt Disney and they were thinking about a cover. But as ever, when people speak about Disney, they want to put too much in. They wanted to remind people [on the cover] of each movie, each known character. But on the cover this would have been confusing. And it had to go to the printing house within a few hours. So I did not have time to do too complex a thing. I thought about creating the face of Mickey, thinking that it was the most simple and quickest idea. It was a bit of laziness, but it was also a logical idea.


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