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2023100 Years of Disney - Sheetlets

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Technical details
  • 07.09.2023
  • The Walt Disney Company - Benelux
  • © The Walt Disney Company
  • Offset
  • cyan, magenta, yellow, black and PMS gold
  • Stamp Size: 30 x 40mm (WxH), M/S Size: 170 x 122 mm (WxH)
About 100 Years of Disney

In addition to the usual stamp publication schedule, PostNL also has an annual personal stamp publication schedule. This programme is flexible. It allows PostNL to publish stamp sheets in response to topical developments, such as with the 100 Years of Disney stamps. Each issue is designed based on a fixed layout with a fixed number of personal stamps. The stamps are available while stocks last on the webshop and can be ordered by telephone from the Collect Club customer service on telephone number +31 (0)88 868 99 00.

PostNL will release the 100 Years of Disney personalised stamps on 7 September 2023 to mark Disney’s 100th anniversary. The sheet of five stamps stars the Disney characters Snow White, Dumbo, Princess Elsa, Simba and Mickey Mouse. The denomination on these stamps is ‘1’, the denomination for items weighing up to 20g with destinations in the Netherlands. The stamps were designed by The Walt Disney Company’s Benelux creative team. A sheet of five stamps costs €5.05. Along with the 100 Years of Disney stamp sheet, PostNL will release a Mickey Mouse stamp with 24-carat gold, in an edition of 1,000 stamps. PostNL will deliver the gold stamp along with a special storage box with a certificate of authenticity. The retail price is €50.00.

PostNL is issuing the 100 Years of Disney stamps to mark the 100th anniversary of The Walt Disney Company. The special anniversary will be celebrated by Disney in various ways, including new films, festive events, exclusive Disney 100 products and special activities in the theme parks. Brothers Walt and Roy Disney founded The Disney Brothers Studio on 16 October 1923. The company name was later changed, first to Walt Disney Productions and then to The Walt Disney Company. The media group focuses on films, music, media channels, theme parks and consumer products. The Walt Disney Company’s foundation is the production and distribution of successful content, including classic animated films like Snow White, Bambi, The Lion King and - more recently - Frozen, Encanto and Lightyear. The company operates six theme parks worldwide (in California, Florida, Paris, Tokyo, Hong Kong and Shanghai) as well as a cruise line (Disney Cruise Line). The group includes TV channels such as ABC and Disney Channel, streaming channel Disney+, sports channel ESPN and 10 regional TV channels and 71 local radio stations in the US. A separate division deals with consumer products, merchandising and licensing, including for children’s books and comics. The Walt Disney Company acquired the rights to Jim Henson’s Muppets in 2004. It acquired Pixar Animation Studios (known for Toy Story and Finding Nemo, among others) in 2006 and Marvel Entertainment (known for Spider-Man, X-Men and The Incredible Hulk, among others) in 2009, followed by Lucasfilm.

The 100 Years of Disney stamps feature five popular Disney characters. The illustrations are set against a white background in the fixed frame of the personal stamps. Each stamp features the 100 Years of Disney anniversary logo. The main characters on the stamps are from several of Disney’s classic animated films and comics. From left to right are Snow White (from the film Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs), Dumbo (from the film Dumbo), Princess Elsa (from the film Frozen), Simba (from the film The Lion King) and Mickey Mouse (from numerous animated films and comics). The top sheet edge features a collage of the same images in a pattern composed of triangles, representing the facets of a diamond. The sheet edges of the stamp sheet are platinum in colour, with the typography in white. The stamps with 24-carat gold feature the same drawing of Mickey Mouse against a gold background.

The font used for the denomination 1 and Nederland was designed in 2018 by font designer Martin Majoor from Arnhem. The other fonts used are TWDC Inspire and The Walt Disney Company’s proprietary font (since 2022, brand team Disney, Burbank, USA).

On 16 October 2023, it will be exactly 100 years since the foundations were laid for the media conglomerate now called The Walt Disney Company. Disney is celebrating throughout the year, with all kinds of highlights, explains Roos van der Wijk. She works at Disney as Senior Manager Brand Partnerships & XLOB Promotions for Benelux. In that role, she was closely involved in working with PostNL to issue the 100 Years of Disney stamp sheet. ‘We’re celebrating our 100th birthday together with our fans. There are new films coming out, concerts and all sorts of other events. All sorts of things are also happening in the theme parks, including together with the Make-a-Wish Foundation. We are also launching all kinds of exclusive products as part of 100 Years of Disney. Temporarily and in limited editions.’

Generation after generation
According to Van der Wijk, everyone has something to do with Disney. ‘The unique storytelling, the imagination and creativity, the magic and wonder – all of this makes us have that strong connection with audiences of all ages. Whether it’s a product with a Disney character on it or a fond memory of a specific film or character, we all grew up with it. From generation to generation. Grandparents read stories to their grandchildren featuring Disney characters they also know from their own childhood. Parents watch films with their children in the cinema that they themselves saw as small children. Disney’s characters, films and theme parks are therefore a major influence on popular culture.’

Different characters
The stamps were designed by Disney Benelux’s creative team, under the guidance of Van der Wijk. This was done using style guides, which Disney uses to ensure that all anniversary materials, wherever they are in the world, have the same look and feel. The stamps feature five classic Disney characters. Other ideas were tried first. Van der Wijk: ‘For instance, we looked into doing something just with Mickey Mouse. For example, how we could show, using five illustrations, how his appearance has changed over the past 100 years. Still, we ended up choosing these five different characters. These are Disney icons, the classics that everyone knows. Timeless and with something for everyone, young and old. Dumbo and Simba appeal mainly to children, while Snow White and Elsa are real power women. And Mickey Mouse is, of course, everyone’s favourite.’

The main characters
The characters on the stamps span Disney’s 100-year history. The oldest is Mickey Mouse. Walt Disney came up with him in 1928 for the animated film Plane Crazy. Mickey appears in numerous cartoons, animated films and TV shows and has become a true ambassador of the Disney brand. Snow White is also from an animated Disney film titled Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. The story in the 1937 film is based on the Grimm brothers’ fairy tale of the same name. The little elephant Dumbo is from the 1941 animated film of the same name. The story is taken from Dumbo, the Flying Elephant by Helen Aberson. In this 1939 children’s book, a baby elephant learns to fly in the circus. The lion Simba, son of lion king Mufasa, is the star of the 1994 animated film The Lion King. The great success of this film, set on the African savannah, led to several sequels and a musical, among other things. Finally, Princess Elsa is one of the main characters from the 2013 animated film Frozen. The film builds on Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tale The Snow Queen. Frozen shows how Elsa, who possesses magical powers she cannot control, overcomes all kinds of adversities together with her sister Anna.

The stamp illustrations return on the top sheet edge, but this time with a colourful background. ‘The background is important at Disney,’ says Van der Wijk. ‘Each character is always depicted in their environment, in their own world. That’s part of the magic. So you won’t see Princess Elsa standing by Snow White’s well. Mickey Mouse never walks around on the streets, except, of course, at Disneyland Paris and all the other theme parks. The order on the stamps isn’t chronological; we let that be determined by the glance of the characters. On either side, Snow White and Mickey Mouse look in, while the other characters look directly at the viewer. This is how they connect with fans. Because we’re celebrating this entire year together with them.’

About Roos van der Wijk
Roos van der Wijk (1973, Utrecht) completed various commercial and marketing studies and worked as an Account Manager at Sony, Fox Kids Europe and Jetix. In 2010, she joined The Walt Disney Company as Promotions Manager, followed by a position as Head of Commercial Marketing & Project Management. Meanwhile, as Senior Manager Brand Partnerships & XLOB Promotions - Benelux, Van der Wijk is responsible for working with partners on matters regarding studio releases, Disney+ films and series and integrated marketing initiatives.