Walt Disney Biography: the American Film Producer

As an American filmmaker and businessman, Walt Disney developed feature-length animated cartoons and live-action “family” pictures that helped to redefine popular culture.


Walt Disney Birth & Bio

His full name Walter Elias Disney, Walt Disney was an American film and television producer and showman who was best known for creating iconic characters like Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck.

He was born on December 5, 1901 in Chicago, Illinois, and died on December 15, 1966 in Los Angeles, California. Before his death in 1966, he had already began construction on a second amusement park called Walt Disney World, which would be located near Orlando, Florida.

The Disney Company he created has grown into one of the world’s greatest entertainment giants since he launched it in the 1940s.

Walt Disney Early life

In 1901, Walter Elias Disney was born to Elias and Flora Call Disney in Chicago, Illinois, the fourth of their five children. As a young boy, Walter’s harsh and devout father, who frequently physically assaulted his children, worked as a construction worker. His father bought a farm near Marceline, Missouri, not long after, and the family relocated there.

While living on the farm, Walter acquired a deep affection for animals and a strong sense of self-worth. In Kansas City, Walter helped his father distribute newspapers when the farm collapsed. In addition, he worked as a train candy and newspaper vendor between Kansas City and Chicago, Illinois. During this period, he began painting and even took some art courses.


For military service during World War I (1914–18; an international conflict involving Germany-led Central Powers and the Allies—England, the United States, and other countries), Walt Disney dropped out of high school at the age of 17.

In 1919, he went to Kansas City to work as a commercial illustrator and subsequently developed rudimentary animated cartoons (a series of drawings with slight changes in each that resemble movement when filmed in order). By 1922, he and Ub Iwerks had opened their own business together, and Iwerks’ talent as a cartoonist and technological know-how played a significant role in Disney’s future success.

Off to Hollywood

In 1923, Disney relocated to Hollywood, California, after a disastrous start with Ub Iwerks. He began working on Oswald the Rabbit cartoons at Universal Studios with his older brother Roy.

Walt Disney and his brother came up with a persona of their own after a contract dispute ended the project. It was Steamboat Willie, the first sound-only cartoon, that gave them their big break. At one point, a figure named “Mortimer Mouse” had Disney as the voice of the character.

A few years after they married, Disney’s wife, Lillian, came up with an idea for a new name for their son: Mickey Mouse.

All of Disney’s income was reinvested in the production of new films. He was a master narrative editor, and he drove his company to the forefront of the industry by his meticulous attention to detail.

When Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck and Minnie Mouse were created in the 1930s, they helped make Disney cartoons popular all over the world because of their innovative use of music, sound, and traditional material (as in The Three Little Pigs). Walt Disney’s empire was built on the success of its advertising, publishing, and merchandising divisions.

Major Films and Television Productions

It was a big setback for Disney when animators went on strike in 1941. At this time, many animators were leaving and it would be years before the firm was able to produce high-quality animated films.

The Reluctant Dragon (1941), Saludos Amigos (1942), The Three Caballeros (1945), Make Mine Music (1946), and Song of the South (1947) are only a few examples of the studio’s commercial films that utilize this live-action/animation hybrid approach (1946).
By this time, the Disney studio had become a well-known huge company, and it began making a wide range of entertainment pictures. Seal Island (1948), Beaver Valley (1950), and The Living Desert (1950) were all part of the popular True-Life Adventures series (1953). For example, Cinderella (1950), Alice in Wonderland (1951), and Peter Pan (1953) were among the first full-length animated romances made by the Disney company (1961).


For a long time in the early 1950s, Walt Disney had envisioned a massive amusement park outside Los Angeles. When Disneyland debuted in 1955, much of Disney’s preference for nostalgic feeling and imagination was visible in its design and construction.

Walt Disney Biography

It quickly rose to the status of a tourist hotspot, drawing visitors from all over the world. After his death in 1966, development began on Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida, which opened in 1971.


Walt Disney had tight reins on the company, both in terms of artistic direction and financial management. He was in charge of the company’s growth into live-action films, television shows, theme parks, and mass merchandising. Having revolutionized the family entertainment sector and having an impact on a whole generation of American youngsters, Walt Disney passed away in 1966. I hope you found this piece interesting, and if you’d want to see more like it, check out Theactivenews.com.

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