The Walt Disney Family Museum Blog

Posted on Tue, 06/20/2023 - 14:03
Posted on Jun 20, 2023

Throughout his life, Walt Disney was dedicated to giving back to his community and generously supported many charities, especially those that benefitted children. From Toys for Tots to the Jules Stein Eye Institute at UCLA, Walt’s charitable giving often extended beyond monetary support. The John Tracy Clinic—now known as the John Tracy Center—was an organization close to Walt’s heart and, from its inception, he was an active supporter of its efforts.

Posted on Mon, 06/05/2023 - 14:54
Posted on Jun 5, 2023
“The greatest wealth a man may acquire is the wisdom he gains from living. And sometimes, out of the small beginnings, come the forces that shape a whole life.” These words invite visitors of The Walt Disney Family Museum into the main galleries, setting the stage for the story of Walt Disney’s birth and early life and, as Diane Disney Miller has said, “explain the purpose of our museum better than I ever could.” They were written by screenwriter John Tucker Battle, for the opening scene of one of Walt Disney’s favorite films, So Dear to My Heart (1949).
Posted on Tue, 05/16/2023 - 15:17
Posted on May 16, 2023
Two years before Mickey Mouse debuted in color in The Band Concert (1935) and several years before his iconic redesign popularized by his turn as the Sorcerer’s Apprentice in Fantasia (1940), he starred in a black-and-white short film that encapsulated where The Walt Disney Studios was in the development of animation as an American art form. Ye Olden Days it was, in more ways than one.
Posted on Mon, 05/01/2023 - 15:15
Posted on May 1, 2023

Legendary artist Burny Mattinson passed away recently at the age of 87. Born in San Francisco, he had moved to the San Fernando Valley later in childhood, and first wandered up to The Walt Disney Studios’ gates back in 1953. He was just 18 years old—still a high school student—and was looking for a job. 

Posted on Tue, 04/18/2023 - 11:19
Posted on Apr 18, 2023

As Walt Disney himself said, “You can design, create, and build the most wonderful place in the world… but it requires people to make the dream a reality.” The Disney community has lost yet another of those cherished collaborators who worked directly with Walt.

Roland Fargo Crump passed away recently at the age of 93.

Posted on Thu, 04/06/2023 - 17:10
Posted on Apr 6, 2023

Mary Blair. To many, the words that come to mind when we think of her are whimsy, color, flair, style, beauty, artist, and genius. Many know the legendary Mary Blair from her work on such Disney classics as Cinderella (1950), Alice in Wonderland (1951), and Peter Pan (1953), and her influence on one of the most iconic attractions of all time, “it’s a small world.” But in addition to her long resume working for Walt Disney himself, Blair had yet another trick up her sleeve: the ability to design fanciful tile murals.

Posted on Thu, 03/23/2023 - 14:47
Posted on Mar 23, 2023

The Walt Disney Company, now celebrating its 100th anniversary, began with a deal made with Margaret J. Winkler for the distribution of Walt’s first series, the Alice Comedies. Producer and distributor Margaret Winkler was not just responsible for giving the Disney Brothers Cartoon Studio their start, but was a champion of the animation industry which turned inked drawings into internationally-beloved characters.

Posted on Thu, 02/23/2023 - 16:41
Posted on Feb 23, 2023

Arguably, the highlight in The Walt Disney Family Museum Awards Lobby is Walt’s collection of 26 Academy Awards®, the largest collections of Oscars® outside of Hollywood. Of all of Walt’s Oscars®, one outweighs the rest, literally. This special honorary Academy Award consists of one standard Oscar® statuette standing above seven other miniature ones representing each of the Dwarfs. 

Posted on Fri, 02/10/2023 - 14:41
Posted on Feb 10, 2023

In the latest issue of The Walt Disney Family Museum’s member magazine, filmmaker and former Disney voice artist Bruce Reitherman shared memories and insights about working on Walt Disney’s The Jungle Book (1967). Bruce was not only the voice of the lead character Mowgli, but also the son of the film’s director, Wolfgang “Woolie” Reitherman. The conversation between the younger Reitherman and historian Lucas O.

Posted on Thu, 12/22/2022 - 15:48
Posted on Dec 22, 2022
Released March 16, 1961, the film came in the middle of a record year for The Walt Disney Studios during which time Walt released three of the six highest-grossing films of the year—One Hundred and One Dalmatians (1961) came in at third while The Parent Trap (1961) came in sixth, just behind The Absent-Minded Professor—outgrossing notables like Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1961) starring Audrey Hepburn.