Segments in this Video

Union Strikes Continue (03:51)


Employees at the Disney Studios demand better wages, extra pay for overtime, and appropriate job titles. Disney refuses to negotiate with the Screen Cartoonist's Guild leader, Herbert Sorrell.

Affection in South America (02:50)

Disney becomes a typical industrial boss, blaming union organization on communist conspiracy. He is disillusioned and discouraged. Disney takes a 10 week working tour in South America, leaving his brother, Roy Disney, in charge.

Strike Cessation (04:27)

When Disney returns from his trip, Roy has settled the conflict with the union organization. During WWII, Disney Studios houses anti-aircraft troops. In August of 1942, Bambi is released.

Paradise Lost (03:24)

Bambi is a triumph for Disney, because it extends realistic animation. Its release met an audience who saw Disney as out dated. Disney's experimental style was gone.

Triumph of the Underdog (03:35)

After WWII, Disney is interested in American folklore stories. Animation product for the film, Song of the South, is simple, but the politics are not. Disney takes on social issues of slavery and race.

Song of the South (03:40)

Disney solicits notes from prominent African-American intellectuals and the head of the NAACP. Critics are split at the premiere of Song of the South. Many chapters of the NAACP boycott the film.

New Creative Revolution (02:31)

In 1947, a new animation studio enters the scene, United Productions of America. UPA becomes a place where cartoonists can experiment. Disney joins an organization sworn to protect the motion picture industry from communism.

War on Communism (03:29)

In October 1947, Disney is invited to Washington to testify on the subject of communists in the movie industry. Disney names Herbert Sorrell as a known communist.

Forced to Diversify (03:07)

By 1948, Disney is still in search of the next big hit. After a trip to Alaska, Disney attempts to make a nature movie. Seal Island earns Disney an Academy Award.

Disney in Crisis (02:30)

Roy Disney agrees to raise 2 million dollars for the new animated feature, Cinderella. Nearing 50, Disney is wearing down and keeps a trained nurse on the studio payroll.

Toy Trains and Manual Labor (03:07)

In the fall of 1948, Disney takes a vacation under doctor's orders. Disney arrives home with a new obsession, model trains.

Finding Pleasure (03:41)

in 1950, critics hail Cinderella as the long awaited return of the classic Disney form. Disney's attention is focused on his scale model train.

Birth of Disneyland (03:51)

In 1942, Disney begins liquidating family assets to start a new company, WED Enterprises. His first project is to build an amusement park.

One Hour in Wonderland (03:36)

Disney's goal is to put real people in a real adventure, live and three dimensional. He exploits television to raise the funds for his amusement park.

Construction Begins (02:37)

It takes Roy Disney months to convince ABC to fund Disneyland. Construction of the amusement park begins in Anaheim, California.

Master of Dreams and Hopes (03:53)

Families of the 1950s have the financial means to participate in entertainment activities. Disney creates anticipation for the amusement park on his Disneyland television show.

Davy Crockett Series (03:26)

Children across American fall for Davy Crockett. The show's theme song becomes a number one hit record.

Opening Day Approaches (04:14)

Disney thinks of Disneyland as a living animation. His constant demands put the entire operation behind deadline.

Disneyland's Opening Day (03:18)

On July 17, 1955, Disneyland opens to the public in Anaheim, California. ABC's Bob Cummings televises the opening day live. Some of the attractions are not operational.

Disneyland Experience (02:23)

Nearly half of the American population tunes in to ABC's broadcast of Disneyland's opening day. While reporters take notes on mechanical issues and mishaps, Disney is elated.

Representing American Values (03:06)

Disneyland draws one million visitors in its first ten weeks, and five million per year. World leaders see Disneyland as an opportunity to catch a glimpse into the American psyche.

King of Disneyland (03:15)

Disneyland is an idealized version of the past and hope for the future. Disney maintains an apartment atop the park's fire department.

A Hero's Welcome (02:47)

In July 1956, Disney travels to Marceline, Missouri for a dedication. Here, he is able to relive what an ideal childhood should be.

Uncle Walt the Host (04:34)

By 1960, Disney's focus is on protecting the legacy of the name. His form of entertainment is restricted to the ethics of hope of the human spirit.

Personal Power of Disney (03:50)

Disney creates a persona for public consumption that differs from reality. By 1960, Disney's company is bigger than ever, and his managing style is still relentless and crude.

Live Action Animation (03:31)

At age 61, Disney wins more Academy Awards than any other film producer in history. In 1963, Disney begins production on Mary Poppins.

Mary Poppins (01:49)

Mary Poppins debuts in the summer of 1964, and becomes a box office smash. The film is nominated for thirteen Oscars.

Sanctuary of Decency (03:22)

In the late 1960s, the gap is widening between Disney's version of America and what is actually occurring. Critics begin to attack his films as conservative and ignorant of marginalized people

Project Future (04:26)

In 1965, Disney purchases land in Florida, bigger than Manhattan Island. His goal is to build a city of the future to maintain his legacy.

Health Concerns (03:55)

In the summer of 1966, Disney takes a two week vacation touring the coastline of Canada and Alaska. On October 27, 1966, during a promotional show, Disney's health noticeably deteriorates.

Final Days of Disney (03:08)

On the night of December 14, 1966, Disney dies of lung cancer. Friends and family members discuss the moment they heard the news.

Walt Disney: A Figure of American Ethos (03:27)

Disney's death is front page news across the country and around the world. Disney understood the American psyche and anticipated the future.

Credits: Walt Disney: Part 2 (02:19)

Credits: Walt Disney: Part 2

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Walt Disney: Part 2

Part of the Series : Walt Disney
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Walt Disney built a media and entertainment company that stands as one of the most powerful on the planet, won more Academy Awards than anybody in history, created a cinematic art form, and invented a new kind of American vacation destination. Disney's work counts adoring fans on every continent and critics who decried its smooth façade of sentimentality and stubborn optimism, its feel-good re-write of American history. Part two of this two-part series focuses on Disney’s troubles with union organizations, success in building Disneyland and Disney World, and his battle with lung cancer. Distributed by PBS Distribution. 

Length: 112 minutes

Item#: EDP114677

Copyright date: ©2015

Closed Captioned

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