Walter Elias Disney, known as Walt Disney, was a producer, director, screenwriter and American entertainer.
His family had a farm and he and his younger sister (Ruth) were too small to help. then he had his first contact with drawing at age 5 and began to develop his great love for trains. School in Kansas City was not a good student for his work delivering newspapers to help the family finances, she had trouble concentrating and used to sleep in class. He was prone to daydreaming and to spend time doodling. In his school years, he was in charge of making cartoons school newspaper, ‘The Village Voice’. His comics were patriotic and political issue, mainly focused on the First World War (1914-1918).
He decided to pursue a career, moved to Kansas City. His brother Roy worked at a bank in the area, and thanks to a friend he got a job at the Pesemen-Rubin Art Studio, where created ads for newspapers, magazines and cinemas. There he met with another artist, Ubbe Iwerks, with whom he became friends, and they decided to start their own business. In January 1920 they founded the company ‘Iwerks-Disney Commercial Artists’ although they did not get too many customers, and finally had to leave. Both were hired by Kansas City Film Ad. Disney was fascinated by the possibilities of animation. He used his time in the company to experiment with animation and film techniques. In 1922 he founded the company Laugh-O-Gram Films, Inc., dedicated to making animated short films based on popular fairy tales and children’s stories, like ‘Cinderella’ or ‘Puss in Boots’. Short became famous in the area, but their production costs exceeded income. After creating his latest short -the mix of live action and animation “Alice’s Wonderland ‘- the study declared bankruptcy in 1923. So Disney moved to Hollywood. He sold his house to pay for the trip and left behind his friends and former employees, but the film ‘Alice’s Wonderland’ was. His first studio in Hollywood was a garage at his uncle Robert. He sent ‘Alice’s Wonderland’ at the New York distributor Margaret Winkler, who showed great interest and hired Disney to produce more films combining animation and live action.
His brother Roy took charge of the economic management of the study and at the request of Disney, the star of “Alice’s Wonderland ‘, Virginia Davis and his family went to Hollywood from Kansas City. Iwerks and hers did the same and so began ‘Disney Brothers’ Studio’, the seed of the future ‘The Walt Disney Company’. In the late 20s, born Mickey Mouse, who first appeared in ‘Plane Crazy’, a silent short film of 1928. Mickey Mouse knew an extraordinary success, to the point that in 1935, the League of Nations awarded Disney with a gold medal, declaring Mickey “international symbol of goodwill ‘. In 1932, Disney released his first color film, ‘Flowers and Trees’, the ‘Silly Symphonies’ series, which won the Oscar for Best Animated Short Film. That same year, Disney also received an honorary Oscar for creating Mickey Mouse, whose films became color from 1935. Soon appeared derived series, featuring new characters like Donald Duck, Pluto and Goofy.
In 1937, after two years of hard work, Disney premiered its first feature film, ‘Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs’ in the Carthay Circle Theater in Los Angeles. The ovation after finishing the film was tremendous. Film was the biggest blockbuster of 1938, and revenues of $ 8 million (equivalent to about 98 million today) in its release. This success allowed to build a new Disney studios in Burbank, inaugurated on Christmas Eve 1939. In 1940, studies produced ‘Pinocchio’ and ‘Fantasy’, two new features. At the same time, creating new shorts were the stars of the house (Mickey, Donald, Goofy and Pluto), highlighting ‘The vakiente sastrecillo’ (1938) and ‘The Pointer’ (1939), both starring Mickey. Short production of ‘Silly Symphonies’ ended in 1939.
In October 1941, ‘Dumbo’ was released. It was a great success, becoming an important source of income for the study. In December, the United States entered World War II. Studies collaborated with the government, producing educational and military training films, and others for morale up the rear. They went through a time of economic hardship as the propaganda films did not generate profits, and ‘Bambi’ (1942), the next film by Disney, did not produce the expected results. To cut costs, compiled several short films were produced. To recoup their productions, Disney had another great business idea: in 1944 reestrenó ‘Snow White’, establishing the tradition of releasing at seven feature films of the company.
After the war, Disney diversified its offer, moving towards the production of children’s films of real image, nature documentaries and television programs. In the late forties, the studio had recovered enough to produce new films: ‘Cinderella’ (1950, life’s favorite Walt Disney film) was the first real feature film produced from ‘Bambi’. They were followed by ‘Alice in Wonderland’ (1951) and ‘Peter Pan’ (1952).
Disney wanted to build an amusement park for employees and their families could have fun in their spare time. Over time, an initially modest project would grow to become Disneyland. In 1952, Disney created a new subsidiary of his company, WED Enterprises (named following his initials Walter Elias Disney), to plan and build the park. Some members of the study participated in the project as engineers and designers. Construction began in July 1954 and the park opened to the public in July 1955.
He was also interested in other areas of the entertainment industry. ‘Treasure Island’ (1950) was the first live action film company. They followed ‘Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea’ (1954), ‘The Shaggy Dog’ (1959) and ‘The Parent Trap’ (1960). In addition, studies soon discovered the importance of television. In 1950 they produced their first program, ‘One Hour in Wonderland’. In the ABC, Disney sponsored ‘Disneyland’, a program to promote your amusement park. The first daily television program by the study was the popular ‘Mickey Mouse Club’, which would in antenna until the nineties.
As the studio expanded and diversified, Disney was paying less attention to the animation department, delegating more and more tasks confidence in their leaders, whom he called ‘the Nine Old’. In life Disney, created several successful feature films: ‘The Lady and the Tramp’ (1955), ‘The Sleeping Beauty’ (1959), ‘101 Dalmatians’ (1961) and ‘Merlin the Enchanter’ (1963). From 1956, only they made short on time.
In the early sixties, the Disney empire was a major success, and Walt Disney Productions company consolidated its position as the world’s largest family entertainment. After decades, Disney finally got the rights to the books of P. L. Travers about a governess with magical powers and, in 1964, premiered ‘Mary Poppins’, nominated for an Academy Award for Best Picture. In 1965 the construction of a new park, ‘Disneyworld’, in Florida, which began soon after Disney announced death.
At present, the small animation studio founded in 1923 Walt and Roy Disney is one of the largest companies in the field of entertainment, with annual revenues of 36,000 million dollars. The Walt Disney Company operates 18 amusement parks, 39 hotels, 8 studios, 11 channels of cable TV and 1 statute (ABC). Walt Disney Pictures, the largest film studio owned by the company, continues to make animated feature films, at an approximate rate of one per year. In addition, in May 2006, The Walt Disney Company bought Pixar, whose films distributed by Disney, had reached in previous years greater than those produced by Walt Disney Pictures success.
During his long and successful career Walter Elias Disney was awarded 22 Oscars from a total of 59 nominations, and received four honorary, which makes the person most Academy Awards won. He also received seven Emmys.
Walt Disney died on December 15, 1966, for lung cancer.
-His father, Elias Disney, was a farmer and his mother, Flora Call, schoolteacher. He was the fourth of five children.
-When he was 8 years old his father became ill and had to sell the farm. They moved to Kansas in 1910.
-In 1918, wanting to follow in the footsteps of his brother Roy, who had enlisted in the Navy, he left school to enlist in the army. They did not accept for being too young.
-He falsified his birth certificate to show that he was born in 1900 instead of in 1901 to enter the Ambulance Corps of the Red Cross. He was admitted, but did not fight.
-In 1925, Disney hired a young woman named Lillian Bounds to ink and color celluloid. After a brief courtship, he married her on 15 July 1925.Tuvieron a daughter, Diane Marie, in 1933 and three years later they adopted what would be his second daughter, Sharon Mae.