The definitive portrait of one of the most important cultural figures in American history: Walt Disney.
Walt Disney was a true visionary whose desire for escape, iron determination and obsessive perfectionism transformed animation from a novelty to an art form, first with Mickey Mouse and then with his feature films–most notably Snow White, Fantasia, and Bambi. In his superb biography, Neal Gabler shows us how, over the course of two decades, Disney revolutionized the entertainment industry. In a way that was unprecedented and later widely imitated, he built a synergistic empire that combined film, television, theme parks, music, book publishing, and merchandise. Walt Disney is a revelation of both the work and the man–of both the remarkable accomplishment and the hidden life.
Winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Biography
USA Today Biography of the Year
Customer ReviewsSee All
An Incredible American Story For Everyone
Ever want to experience what it’s like to be an entrepreneur? The ups, downs, mistakes and the victories - it’s all here in this incredible audio book on Walt Disney. I seem to revisit this epic tale on every long car trip and it’s just as captivating on the 10th listen as it was the 1st. To fully understand the history and shear perseverance of what it actually took to be....and to live....as Walt Disney reveals itself in stunning detail and prose as you walk through his life along with him. I never look at any Disney film, theme park or character again without fully appreciating the painstaking journey it took by the greatest storyteller who ever lived - Walt Disney.
Listened to it Twice and will probably listen again
The sad thing is this guy struggled for so long. As long as he was creating his magic (and I must concede to preferring Warner Bros cartoons) he was a financial failure. I couldn't believe that movies like Bambi and Cinderella were considered "bombs" at the time, only to become viable with re-release. This is the story of a guy who knew what he wanted and wouldn't settle for less and wouldn't compromise. It's hard to do. He spend decades failing. Even worse, when he finally got it all working, around the time of Mary Poppins, he only had two years to enjoy it. As I keep consuming books about genius, I keep seeing the same trend: genius isn't enough. You have to be able to sell and you have to be lucky.
Little obsessed in areas, but very easy to piece it together
The book was incredibly detailed...at 33 hours how else could it be? Around Chapter 10 the author starts to obsess on accusing Walt of focusing on CONTROL in a detrimental way. Walt wanted to control his art like a master controlling the pen or brush, but the author attempted to spin it in an obsessed angle. If one wants to create a painting, they have to control themselves during the process. When creating Disneyland, the amount of which Walt had to control rose to levels that no man had ever imagined solo. I think it was a cheap shot and an immature take on a normal process that Walt had been doing his entire life. I know and have discussed Walt's last moment with folks that worked for him, and there are a lot of missing moments of Walt's last minutes on this planet. He did a lot of reviewing of projects before he died...none of which is mentioned. Still the book is exhaustingly detailed where it is. I salute the effort with 5 stars.