Alice Hits the Skids
As the Alice series hit its third year of production, the relationship with Charles Mintz, the husband of M.J. Winkler, was a mixed bag. In February 1926, he contracted for 26 more Alice films -- but reduced the payments back to $1,500 apiece. On the other hand, he started to pay on time, and the ongoing hostilities between the Disneys and Mintz grew less tense.
Still, the pressures to produce were immense, and Walt was sometimes abrupt or demanding with his staff. Talking in general terms about his early career, Walt said, “In the very early days of making these pictures, it was a fight to survive. I used to throw gags and things in because I was desperate. I mean, I didn’t even like ’em then. But I had to get one out every two weeks. So, I mean, I couldn’t sit and meditate about the thing.”
What’s more, after several years, the Alice concept was getting tired. Increasingly, Walt felt that his future lay in animation, not in a series that still relied heavily on live action. Walt decided that he would finish up his obligations for the Alice series and move onto something different.