Russi Taylor has died aged 75.
The actress – who was best known for voicing the part of Minnie Mouse for more than 30 years – passed away in Glendale, California, on Friday (26.07.19).
Taylor – who also played characters in ‘The Simpsons’ – worked as the voice of the iconic Disney character from 1986, lending her talents to a range of projects, including TV series, films and even Disney theme parks.
Bob Iger, Disney’s chairman and chief executive, has paid a glowing tribute to the late actress, saying she helped to make Minnie “a global icon”.
He said in a statement: “For more than 30 years, Minnie and Russi worked together to entertain millions around the world – a partnership that made Minnie a global icon and Russi a Disney Legend beloved by fans everywhere.
“We take comfort in the knowledge that her work will continue to entertain and inspire for generations to come.”
Taylor actually married Wayne Allwine, who was the voice of Mickey, in 1991 and they remained married until his death in 2009.
Disney said in its statement that the duo remained “as inseparable as their animated counterparts until Wayne’s death”.
Prior to her own passing, Taylor – who also voiced the parts of The Little Mermaid, Buzz Lightyear of Star Command and Kim Possible on TV – insisted she never craved fame and that, unlike the animated characters she played, she never considered herself to be famous.
She shared: “I never wanted to be famous. The characters I do are famous, and that’s fine for me.”