Walt Before Mickey




I have always been a huge Disney fan. Since I was a kid watching all the Disney movies and cartoons was such a huge thing for me. Another favorite pastime of mine is going to Disney World which never gets old, even at my age of 40.


As I grew older I became more interested in the man behind the creation of Mickey Mouse and the theme parks he created. Walt Disney is truly an interesting man with an interesting past.


After his death in 1966 I always wondered why they never made a movie about his life growing up and how he came up with the character we all know today as Mickey Mouse. It couldn't have been easy back then.


Then in 2015 a movie called “Walt Before Mickey” came out and surprisingly enough it wasn't endorsed by the Walt Disney Company. The book was written by Timothy S. Susanin with a foreword written by Diane Disney.


The movie begins when Walt was just a child drawing pictures on the wall of his barn in Missouri where he grew up. As he got older he joined the Red Cross and soon started his own company with Ub Iwerks called “Laugh-O-Grams” which was short-lived before going bankrupt.


Soon after, he moves to California and starts Disney Brothers Studio with his brother Roy and creates Alice Comedies and Oswald the Lucky Rabbit which are distributed by Charles Mintz who is a major film producer and distributor. But because of the contract Walt is under a major portion of royalties going to Mintz forcing Walt to create his own character which he owns all the rights to.


When Walt comes up with the idea for Mickey Mouse we see him and a theater packed with people watching Plane Crazy; one of Walt's first animated shorts. The audience laughs and applauds at the end of the film.


Walt Before Mickey stars Thomas Ian Nicholas as Walt Disney and Jon Heder as his brother Roy and I personally enjoyed every minute of the movie. I thought it did an excellent job of telling the story of Walt Disney in his early years and how he struggled to make his dream a reality and become successful.


Now I've never read any books on Walt Disney. I'm more of a visual learner than learning by reading but after watching all the documentaries and finally reading some books on the man, I can tell the movie is pretty accurate as far as I can tell.


If you're looking for a good story that tells the life of Walt Disney in his early years I would recommend you give Walt Before Mickey a chance.