, "Mickey Mousing
" (synchronized, mirrored, or parallel scoring) is a film technique
the accompanying music
with the actions on screen. "Matching movement to music," or, "The exact segmentation of the music analogue to the picture." The term comes from the early and mid-production Walt Disney
films, where the music almost completely works to mimic the animated motions of the characters. Mickey Mousing may use music to "reinforce an action by mimicking its rhythm
exactly....Frequently used in the 1930s and 1940s, especially by Max Steiner
, it is somewhat out of favor today, at least in serious films, because of overuse. However, it can still be effective if used imaginatively". Mickey Mousing and synchronicity help structure the viewing experience, to indicate how much events should impact the viewer, and to provide information not present on screen. The technique, "enable[s] the music to be seen to 'participate' in the action and for it to be quickly and formatively interpreted...and [to] also intensify the experience of the scene for the spectator." Mickey Mousing may also create unintentional humor, and be used in parody or self-reference.
It is often not the music that is synced to the animated action, but the other way around. This is especially so when the music is a classical or other well-known piece. In such cases, the music for the animation is pre-recorded, and an animator will have an exposure sheet
with the beats marked on it, frame
by frame, and can time the movements accordingly. In the 1940 film Fantasia
, the musical piece The Sorcerer's Apprentice
, composed in the 1890s, contains a fragment that is used to accompany the actions of Mickey himself. At one point Mickey, as the apprentice, seizes an axe and chops an enchanted broom to pieces so that it will stop carrying water to a pit. The visual action is synchronized exactly to crashing chords in the music. Read more...