Walt Disney’s Biography – Success Despite Many Failiures

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Walter Elias “Walt” Disney was born on December 5, 1901. He was an American cartoonist, animator, film producer and entrepreneur. He was the co-founder of The Walt Disney Company, together with his brother Roy Disney in October 1923. The company is presently valued at over $40 billion, and the name Walt Disney has become synonymous with quality animation. From characters like Mickey Mouse, Goofy and Donald Duck to feature Films like Snow White and the seven dwarfs, Cinderella, Alice in Wonderland and The Hunchback of Notre Dame, his brand is one of the most iconic in popular culture. And below you can find his start up story, the most interesting part of Walt Disney’s biography:

A troubled Childhood

Given the legendary status of the Walt Disney brand in popular culture worldwide, you will be intrigued to learn the true story of the man behind this brand. Born into a family with a very strict and domineering father, and growing up on a farm, Walt Disney and his brothers had it rough and eventually they all ran away from home quite early in their lives.

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The older brothers Herb and Ray Disney were the first to run away, and went to work in the city. Roy, with whom Walt co-founded The Walt Disney Company, also ran away at age 19. At 16, Walt dropped out of high-school to join the army during the first world war, but he was rejected for being under-age, so with help from a friend of his, he lied about his age to the Red-Cross and was then employed as an ambulance driver. An interesting fact from this period his life is that he got some serious troubles for painting cartoons on his ambulance. This vehicle, if existed today, probably would be valued at millions of dollars. After the armistice of November 1918, he was shipped off to France where he would work for about a year.

The Laugh-O-Gram And Ubbe Iwerks

Walt Disney presenting 'Snow white'.

Walt Disney presenting ‘Snow white’.

In 1919 after the war, Walt returned to Kansas City, but nobody would hire him neither as a cartoonist nor as an ambulance driver. After struggling for a while, Walt was delighted when his brother Roy finally helped him to get a temporary job at an art studio that created advertisements for magazines, movie-theaters and newspapers. It was here that Walt met Ubbe Iwerks, who would later become a long-term partner and also Walt’s oldest friend.


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