Jiminy Cricket is the Walt Disney version of "The Talking Cricket" ( ), a fictional character created by Carlo Collodi for his classic novel Pinocchio, which was adapted into an animated film by Walt Disney in 1940. Originally an unnamed, minor character in Collodi's novel, he was translated in the Disney version into a comical and wise partner who accompanies Pinocchio on his adventures, having been appointed by the Blue Fairy to serve as the official conscience for Pinocchio.
"Jiminy Cricket!" (sometimes rendered as "Jiminy Christmas!") was originally a minced oath for Jesus Christ. The name of the character is a play on the exclamation (which itself was uttered in Pinocchio's immediate predecessor, 1937's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs). Another example occurs in the 1939 film The Wizard of Oz. When the group first enters the Wizard's chamber, they are startled by the Wizard's sudden thunder-and-lightning display, and Dorothy (Judy Garland) cries, "Oh! Oh! Jiminy Crickets!" (Garland also says the expression in her 1938 film Listen, Darling). It had also been used as an exclamation by the Swedish father several times in the 1930 movie Anna Christie. Another time it is used is in the short 1938 cartoon starring Mickey Mouse The Brave Little Tailor.
For the 1940 Disney film, 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 was cut from the final version of that film. However, Walt Disney persuaded him to stay by giving him the assignment to design Jiminy.
Jiminy Cricket's voice was originally performed by singer Cliff Edwards, who voiced the character for Disney through the 1960s. Jiminy's most famous song, as sung by Edwards, is When You Wish Upon a Star. After Edwards's death, Eddie Carroll replaced him as the voice actor for Jiminy. Carroll died in 2010. The third voice actor for Jiminy, Phil Snyder, began voicing him on May 19, 2010 in the Kingdom Hearts video game series. In his Italian adaptation, Jiminy is voiced by Carlo Romano, who also dubbed for Fernandel in the Don Camillo series, and in French, he is voiced by Roger Carel, also the voice of Asterix.
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