While visiting McDonald’s, you become familiar with that smiling face of a clown. You would have loved him in childhood. He wore a yellow and red jumpsuit, had red hair, and was always smiling. His name was Ronald McDonald, and he was the official mascot of McDonald. You might ask several questions. Is Ronald McDonald real? Who brought Ronald McDonalds and friends into the fast-food corners? Why is he not sighted anymore in the restaurants? Is Ronald McDonald dead? Continue reading to get answers to all these questions.
1. What is McDonald’s?
McDonald’s is an American fast-food company founded in 1940 by two brothers, Richard McDonald and Maurice McDonald, in San Bernardino, California, United States. McDonald’s brothers started working from a hamburger stand. Then, over some time, they turned it into a franchise. Its logo was introduced in 1953 from Golden Arches Logo. (See What Time do McDonald’s Start and Stop Serving Breakfast?)
2. How did they get their Mascot?
As the company became successful, the owners felt the need to advertise it on a national platform. The initial idea for the face of the company was a Cowboy because of the western influence on television. Then the idea of a spaceman came into mind to show the country’s remarkable progress in the space program. But, all these ideas were dropped, and a happy clown idea was finalized. In 1963, they came up with Ronald McDonald’s mascot, a clown with a happy face. So, is Ronald McDonald real? Continue to read to know more about it. (Also read Origin of an Ogre)
3. Who was the Clown?
William Scott was a famous clown from the show Bozo the Clown, claimed to have created McDonald’s mascot character. So, is Ronald McDonald real or is he, Scott, or anyone else? So yes he was dressed to be the first clown of MacDonalds. The hat on his head was a tray with styrofoam hamburger, fries, and a milkshake. The character used to pull out hamburgers magically from his belt. Scott played the role of Ronald from 1963 to 1965. Even though the idea of Ronald was mere of being a mascot for television commercials, the company takes it very seriously. And from the owners to the spokesperson of the company, everyone considers him as the real person who is working for the company. Also, check out the Cunningham name origin.
The clown character was first shown on television in 1965 during Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and in 1966 during the Super Bowl. The first national advertisement for the company showed Ronald landing at a restaurant in a flying saucer, which was in the shape of a hamburger. Since then, Ronald has become the favorite clown among children. (See What Pokemon Cards are Worth Money?)
4. Who is Ronald McDonald and Friends?
After the official appearances made by Ronald McDonald on television, the creators came up with the idea of McDonald’s Land World and McDonald’s friends. In television commercials, Ronald lived in a fantasy world with his friends, and they all have different adventures. His friends were
- Birdie the Early Bird,
- Mayor McCheese,
- The Fry Kids,
- The Hamburglar. ( See 10 Best Ventriloquist in the World)
Watching him enjoying being with his friends in the fantasy world, you wonder, is Ronald McDonald real? Unfortunately, McDonald’s Land world was canceled because some cartoonists claimed that their characters and ideas were used without their permission. But Ronald McDonald continued making appearances on television commercials and in restaurants. They also attend regular events and visit children in hospitals as well. Also, check out what is Mime Acting?
5. Who else Portrayed the Role of Mascot?
Scott was removed from the national advertisement campaign considering him overweight for playing the role of a happy and active character like Ronald. Several actors played the role in television advertisements from time to time. The company chooses one actor for a particular period to portray the character of Ronald McDonald in the television commercials. That actor also gives guest appearances at the restaurants and events organized from time to time. (Also read 10 Best Anime Series)
Following is the list of actors who played the role of Ronald McDonald at local and national levels.
- Willard Scott in Washington D.C (1963–1965),
- Michael Polakovs (1965–1968),
- Bev Bergeron in South California (1966–1968),
- Ray Rayner (1968–1969),
- Viv Weekes (1968–1970),
- George Voorhis in Southern California (1968–1970),
- Bob Brandon (1970–1975),
- King Moody (1969–1985),
- Squire Fridell (1985–1991),
- Jack Doepke (1991–1999),
- David Hussey (2000–2014), and
- Brad Lennon (2014 to present). Must read about the 16 Famous Flamenco Dancers.
Is Ronald McDonald real or a role that many actors have played over time? Several people worldwide have been working full time making appearances as Ronald McDonald. There was a time when over 300 full-time workers portrayed Ronald McDonald in the McDonald’s restaurants. And taking advantage of the demand cartoonists, comic writers, animators, and filmmakers decided to cast him or his character. (Also read Insights of Acme Warner Bros)
6. Is Ronald McDonald Dead?
Several criticisms have been made regarding the clown approaching children for fast food which was quite unethical. They even demanded the retirement of Ronald. And in 2016, because of several creepy clown sightings, Ronald made very few appearances in public and at events. So the mascot is not dead yet but not regularly seen like before. Ronald McDonald has been active on social media and live events only. And in restaurants, a statue of Ronald is found sitting on the bench or standing near the door. (See What Was Howard Hughes Net Worth When He Died?)
Is Ronald McDonald real, according to his creators? From the point of view of the creators, company employees, and McDonald’s lovers, yes, he is real. Also, you learned about Ronald McDonald and friends with whom he lives and enjoys in his McDonald Land. You also got the answer to is Ronald McDonald dead. (Also read Fascinating History of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups)