In the 1989 holiday classic "Scrooged", the chairman of the television network predicts that because there were so many pets in America they would become steady viewers in 20 years - which would be 2009.    So he asks network executive Bill Murray to introduce Door Mice instead of Door Men in their live Christmas Eve version of Dickens' "A Christmas Carol", in order to get a head start on appealing to television-watching pets.

Far fetched?   Perhaps, though singing mice are sure to get everyone's attention, not just your cat.

Researchers at the University of Osaka have created just that in their Evolved Mouse Project.    Professor Takeshi Yagi's lab at Osaka's Graduate School of Frontier Biosciences now has over 100 'singing mice' due to their crossbreeding efforts - and that trait will be passed on to future generations.

While ordinary mice squeak mostly under stress, these singing mice tweet like birds in different environments or near females, leading the researchers to hypothesize that the mouse similarity to humans may allow us to better understand the origins of human language in the future.

"Mice are better than birds to study because they are mammals and much closer to humans in their brain structures and other biological aspects," lead researcher Arikuni Uchimura told The Telegraph.   "We are watching how a mouse that emits new sounds would affect ordinary mice in the same group ... in other words if it has social connotations."

"I know it's a long shot and people would say it's 'too absurd'... but I'm doing this with hopes of making a Mickey Mouse some day," he told AFP.

Our own Dr. Michael White discussed the FOXP2 gene in efforts to create a talking mouse in Scientists Take Us One Step Closer To A Talking Mouse - talking, singing, let's hope there is no gene to help them write science articles too.

Below, enjoy some clips from "Scrooged", including the Door Mice: