Jiminy Cricket in the original trailer for Pinocchio
|First appearance||Pinocchio (1940)|
Ward Kimball (from the unnamed cricket character originally created by Carlo Collodi)|
|Portrayed by||Raphael Sbarge (Once Upon a Time)|
Jiminy Cricket is the Walt Disney version of The Talking Cricket (Italian: Il Grillo Parlante), a fictional character created by Carlo Collodi for his children's book The Adventures of Pinocchio, which Disney adapted into the animated film Pinocchio in 1940. Originally an unnamed, minor character in Collodi's novel, he was transformed in the Disney version into a comical and wise partner who accompanies Pinocchio on his adventures, having been appointed by the Blue Fairy (known in the book as The Fairy with Turquoise Hair) to serve as Pinocchio's official conscience. He is different from real crickets, which are black or dark brown, with very long antennae. Since his debut in Pinocchio, he has become a recurring iconic Disney character and has made numerous other appearances.
Origin of name
The character's name is a play on the exclamation "Jiminy Cricket!", a minced oath for "Jesus Christ" – which itself was uttered in Pinocchio's immediate Disney predecessor, 1937's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. Another example occurs in the 1939 film The Wizard of Oz, wherein Dorothy (Judy Garland) cries, "Oh! Oh! Jiminy Crickets!" when she is startled by the Wizard's pyrotechnics. Garland also uses the expression in her 1938 film Listen, Darling. It is also used several times in the 1930 movie Anna Christie and in the 1938 Mickey Mouse cartoon "Brave Little Tailor".
The character was designed by Ward Kimball, who had been very disappointed and was about to leave the Disney studio when much of the work he did for Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs was cut from the final version of that film. However, Walt Disney persuaded him to stay by giving him the assignment of designing Jiminy Cricket.
Jiminy Cricket has been voiced in English by five different actors. He was originally performed by singer Cliff Edwards, who voiced the character for Disney through the 1960s and sang Jiminy's most famous song, When You Wish Upon A Star. After Edwards' death, Clarence Nash voiced him for a brief period of time, until 1973, when Eddie Carroll took over the role as Jiminy's voice actor. Carroll died in 2010, and the third voice actor for Jiminy Cricket, Phil Snyder, began voicing him in 2010 in the Kingdom Hearts video game series. However, Snyder announced his retirement from voice acting in late 2014 so he can concentrate his career on teaching the Bible, and he was replaced by voice actor Joe Ochman in Kingdom Hearts HD 2.5 Remix's Re:Coded movie; since then, Ochman is now the current voice of Jiminy as of 2014. In the Italian dub of the Disney adaptation, Jiminy Cricket was voiced by Carlo Romano, who also dubbed for Fernandel in the Don Camillo series. In French he is voiced by Roger Carel, who is also the voice of Asterix and the French dub voices of Kaa from The Jungle Book and its sequel; Basil of Baker Street from The Great Mouse Detective; Winnie the Pooh; and Boomer the woodpecker from The Fox and the Hound.
After Pinocchio, Jiminy appeared in Fun and Fancy Free as the host of the cartoon segments. The character also hosted a one-hour segment ABC Radio special in 1947, improbably concerning the year 1960. He also hosted many Disney television specials. Additionally, in a recurring segment of the children's television series The Mickey Mouse Club, he taught a generation how to spell "encyclopedia".
At theme parks
Jiminy Cricket also appears at the Walt Disney Parks and Resorts as a meetable character, and in Pinocchio's Daring Journey, a dark ride themed to the movie from which he originated, found at three of the Disney parks worldwide (i.e. in California, Japan and France).
In the 1950s–'70s, Jiminy Cricket appeared in four series of educational films aimed at grade-school audiences. In the I'm No Fool series, he advised children how to steer clear of dangerous traffic, sharp objects, strangers, exposed electrical lines, and so forth. Several of those series were first shown on The Mickey Mouse Club from 1955 though 1959.
The second series, called You, teaches about the human body with the refrain "You are a human animal...". This, too, was originally shown on the "Mickey Mouse Club." The third series, "The Nature Of Things", combined live-action and animation, and the fourth series was called "Encyclopedia". In the 1950s, on The Mickey Mouse Club, he also sang two related songs related to safety: "Stop, Look, And Listen", and "Safety First".
On Disneyland Records, Jiminy Cricket sang the yuletide song "Kris, Kris Kringle (With A Tingle-Ingle-Ingle)" in a vaudevillian Tin Pan Alley style, first singing the song straight, and the second time speaking half of the song in rhythm. He ended the song by wishing everyone a "Merry Christmas".
Mickey's Christmas Carol
Jiminy appeared in Mickey's Christmas Carol as the Ghost of Christmas Past. The badge given to him by the Blue Fairy at the end of Pinocchio marking him as an official conscience now declares him to be the Ghost of Christmas Past. Scrooge is perplexed at his size, but Jiminy shoots back at him that if Scrooge were measured by his amount of kindness, "you'd be no bigger than a speck of dust!" Nevertheless, Jiminy shows him Scrooge's bygone Christmases: (Scrooge) while working at Fezziwig's, and putting his money before his love, whom he never saw again. When Scrooge begs the minuscule ghost to take him away from these bad memories, Jiminy reminds him that he "fashioned these memories" himself.
Disney children's records
Edwards (as Jiminy) did the narration for several 78 RPM children's records. Two of them were Bongo (originally part of the animated feature Fun and Fancy Free) and The Littlest Outlaw. He also made some children's records simply as Cliff Edwards, including Old MacDonald Had a Farm.
Jiminy Cricket hosted these five sing-along videos:
- The Bare Necessities (October 13, 1987)
- Very Merry Christmas Songs (November 15, 1988, transition cards only, before all songs)
- Be Our Guest (June 19, 1992)
- Friend Like Me (April 30, 1993)
- Circle of Life (December 13, 1994; VHS version only, the DVD version features a voiceover only)
Jiminy Cricket is among the numerous Disney characters who appear in the television series House of Mouse; he also appears in the movie. A running gag in the series involves Timon from The Lion King's trying to eat him, and his rescue by Pumbaa.
Jiminy appears in several comics, (first appearance in Mickey Mouse Magazine Vol. 5 No. 3 in 1939), such as various issues of Walt Disney's Comics and Stories, and he is featured on the covers of Four Color # 701, 795, 897 and 989.
He appears in the Kingdom Hearts video game series as the chronicler of Sora's travels, writing journals and keeping a cast list of the figures they meet, friend or foe. In the original Kingdom Hearts, he has some direct involvement with characters and elements based on the film Pinocchio. He has a substantially bigger part in the sequel, Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories, frequently talking to Sora and offering advice. His role in Kingdom Hearts II is smaller than in the first game; he only appears in one cutscene. In Kingdom Hearts Coded, he finds a message in his journal he didn't write back at Disney Castle; to solve this, he and King Mickey digitize the contents of the note, awakening a virtual Sora. He is transported into the Data world halfway through the game, but presumably sent back to the real world along with the others at the end. A dream world version of Jiminy Cricket appears in Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance; as it is a dream, those who are no longer in their world appear, either via travel or death.
Disney's Villains' Revenge
He is a main character in the game Disney's Villains' Revenge, wherein he must help the player save the stories of Dumbo, Alice in Wonderland, Peter Pan and Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs from the Ringmaster, The Queen of Hearts, Captain Hook and the Queen.
Once Upon a Time
Jiminy (both in fairy-tale cricket form and as his "real world" human alias, Archie Hopper) is a core character on the Disney-owned ABC television series Once Upon a Time, played by Raphael Sbarge. In the series, which finds cursed fairy tale characters living in present-day Maine without memory of their true origins, Jiminy/Archie serves as the town counselor and "conscience". He also has a dalmatian named Pongo. The series adds additional backstory for the character, portraying his life as the human son of con artists, who after inadvertently causing the death of a couple after striking a deal with Rumplestiltskin, is eventually turned by the Blue Fairy into the ethical cricket from previous portrayals. In his cricket form, he is charged to look after and guide the dead couple's son, Geppetto, as long as he lives.
Disney park appearances
Jiminy Cricket can be seen meeting and greeting guests from time to time in the Disney Parks, most prominently at Disney's Animal Kingdom at Rafiki's Planet Watch. His signature features the 'J' as an umbrella.
He also appears daily in the "Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade" at Magic Kingdom in Florida
- Roger Carel (French)
- Georg Thomalla (German, film)
- Carlo Romano (Italian, film)
- Masashi Ebara (Japanese, Pony Canyon edition of the film)
- Kaneta Kimotsuki (Japanese, all other appearances)
- John Price (Danish, 1940 version of film)
- Ove Sprogøe (Danish, 1978 version of film as well as "From all of us to all of you")
- "50-Year Career : Clarence Nash, Donald Duck's Voice, Dies". latimes.
- Joe Ochman. "Joe Ochman is Jiminy Cricket in Kingdom Hearts HD 2.5". Twitter. Retrieved 14 March 2015.
- Frank S. Nugent (1940). "Pinocchio". The New York Times.
- "Joe Ochman". Twitter.