Walt Disney

Walt Disney Facts – 47 Interesting Facts About Walt Disney

walt disney facts

Walt Disney facts: Interesting facts about Walt Disney. Even though there are many shades of grey in the persona of Walt Disney with some calling him a ruthless businessman, anti Semitic and even racist, he rose from humble beginning to epitomize the American Dream. He was always restless and never sat on his laurels. There is no denying of the fact that he created a brand of entertainment and exported it as a commodity worldwide.

Walt Disney facts

Walter Elias “Walt” Disney was born to Elias Disney and Flora Call Disney on December 5, 1901 in Chicago, Illinois.

He spent most of his childhood in Marceline, Missouri, when he developed a passion for drawing, painting and then sold them to his neighbors and close friends.

He became a train buff when his family moved to Kansas City; his Uncle Mike Martin was a train engineer and worked between Fort Madison, Iowa and Marceline.

He even sold snacks and newspapers to travelers on the railroad.

Disney had the creative gene in his blood and this was evident when he took drawing and photography classes and became the cartoonist for the school paper.

He tried to enroll into the Army but was rejected for being underage but joined the Red Cross and drove an ambulance for a year in France before the World War I ended.

After his return from France he moved to Kansas City and tried his hand as a newspaper artist.

He got a job at the Pesmen-Rubin Art Studio and met cartoonist Ubbe Eert Iwwerks.

Disney made commercials based on cutout animation at the Kansas City Film Ad Company.

Soon he started his own animation business and recruited Fred Harman as his first employee.

Facts about Walt Disney

The duo managed to make a deal with a local Kansas City theater to screen their Laugh-O-Grams cartoons which became very popular in a very short time.

Soon Disney had his own studio which he named Laugh-o-gram and it hired a number of employees including Harman’s brother Hugh and Iwerks.

The studio created a series of seven minute fairy tales combing live action and animation called Alice in wonderland.

However by 1923 the studio ran into financial difficulties and Disney had to declare it bankrupt.

In trying times Disney and his brother Roy pooled money and moved to Hollywood with Iwerks relocating to California and all three started the Disney Brothers’ Studio.

The made a deal with New York distributor Margaret Winkler, to distribute their Alice cartoons.

They also created…

How Someone Who Doesn’t Live a Fairy Tale Creates a Place Full of Fairy Tales

“All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them” – Walt Disney.

Whenever you think about great individuals who started from very humble beginnings and achieved extraordinary success, who comes to your mind? For me, Walt Disney springs to my mind first.

Walt Disney was a remarkable creative entrepreneur, animator, voice actor and film producer. He was the recipient of 22 Academy Awards and was nominated 59 times for producing iconic cartoons and animated films that we all love and enjoy even today, including Mickey Mouse.

A pioneer of the American animation industry, Disney founded the multi-billion-dollar Walt Disney Company that consists of various associated film production and distribution companies, cable channels, and television stations and networks. He even founded amusement parks for families to enjoy.

Disney’s journey to the top wasn’t as smooth sailing as many people imagine, though. Like many of us, he experienced many challenges along the way and he had to overcome big obstacles to succeed. Here are some facts about Walt Disney that most people don’t know but should.

1. He wasn’t born rich at all.

You might be tempted to think that Walt Disney achieved all he did because he came from a well-off family. He didn’t. For most of his childhood, Disney’s parents had to move the family across different states looking for work and economic security.

At the age of 19, Disney started drawing cartoons of the creatures from his childhood for sale. But, he got so little money to pay the rent, often being forced to live with friends and go without food.

That Disney rose from this humble background to become a household name is quite inspiring. It demonstrates that you don’t have to be born rich to make your own success.

2. He was told that he “lacked creativity”.

Hard to believe, but Walt Disney – the creative genius behind the Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Pluto and many other classic cartoon characters – was written off as lacking in creativity and artistry. When Disney pitched newspaper companies to get his cartoons published, they shut him down saying he “lacked artistic integrity,” But, though rejected, he kept going. He did not stop pitching his ideas.

People will criticize and even write you off for pursuing your dreams, but keep going. No one knows you better than you know yourself. No one knows your innermost dreams better than you. Listen to your heart and pursue your dreams relentlessly like Disney. It might not be easy, but it will be worth it in the end.

3. He failed many times (apparently more than 300 times).

Most people won’t even put 100 attempts toward their dream let alone fail 300 times. But Walt Disney failed over 300, including the heartbreaking period when his first studio that focused on animation called Laugh-O-Gram went bankrupt and shut down. Each time he failed, he learnt his lesson and tried again. When you believe in your dream as much as Disney did, even repeat failure cannot keep you from ultimate success.

Rather than focusing on the past, focus instead on the future achievements you want. “When you believe a thing, believe it all the way, implicitly and unquestionably,” Disney said.

4. He spent his Saturdays with his two daughters.

Although Walt Disney was an incredibly busy man, he always put family…

For Sale: The First Map of Disneyland

The original map of Disneyland, from 1953.
The original map of Disneyland, from 1953.

On September 23rd, 1953, Walt Disney called up his friend, the painter and art director Herb Ryman, and asked him to come down to his studio. “I’m going to do an amusement park,” Disney said when Ryman arrived. His brother, Roy Disney, was set to give a presentation to potential corporate investors that Monday, to show them what the park would look like.

“Ryman said that he was curious himself and asked to see the drawing,” writes Neal Gabler in his 2006 biography Walt Disney. And then came a twist worthy of the world’s leading storyteller: the drawing, as of yet, did not exist. “’You’re going to do it,’ Walt said.”

And so he did. Ryman drew for forty-two hours straight, subsisting on tuna sandwiches and milkshakes, and coached at every turn by a chain-smoking Walt Disney. When…

The Movie Date That Solidified J.R.R. Tolkien’s Dislike of Walt Disney

J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis were friends and carried on epic literary and religious discussions. They also went to see Disney’s first animated feature film, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, together in 1938 or ’39. They hated it. Tolkien was particularly repulsed by how Disney portrayed dwarves.

Years later, in a 1964 letter to a Miss J.L. Curry at Stanford University, likely…