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29 July 2019, 14:42
Voice actor Russi Taylor, who played Minnie Mouse and various characters on The Simpsons, has died aged 75.
The actress passed away in Glendale, California on Friday, the Walt Disney Company has confirmed.
Russi played several characters in The Simpsons, including Martin Prince.
The star also voiced characters in other shows such as TaleSpin, The Little Mermaid, Buzz Lightyear of Star Command and Kim Possible.
Disney’s chairman and chief executive, Bob Iger, said: “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.”
Russi was picked from 200 candidates to play Minnie Mouse at an audition in 1986.
Since 1986, Russi provided voice-overs for animated TV series, films and theme parks.
Russi married Wayne Allwine, the voice of Mickey Mouse, in 1991 until his death in 2009.
Disney said the couple “remained as inseparable as their animated counterparts until Wayne’s death”.
When Russi was a child, she once bumped into Walt Disney during a visit to Disneyland.
The voice actress recalled: “At one point during our chat, he asked me what I wanted to do when I grow up, and I said, ‘I want to work for you!’ So he said, ‘Okay!’ And now I do!”