Walt And His Stamp-Figures The Company Gravitates To


Original Poster
As Bob Thomas famously declared in his 1976 biography which, along with Neil Gabler's massive work, form the absolute best books about Walt ever written, he was "an American original", the type of individual who represented what more of us should aspire to be like, and a visionary with his mind firmly fixed on the future. Someone who was never content to rest on his laurels and always sought to break new ground. In many ways, the different figures in film and technology that the company has associated with after Walt's death are logical extensions, people that remind them very much of Walt and what he accomplished.

Think on that if you will. Disney has long always been quite fond of and eager to stand next to the likes of Jim Henson, George Lucas, Steven Spielberg, Hayao Miyazaki, James Cameron and Steve Jobs. All of them undoubtedly trailblazers who rebuilt their field in ways that people had never expected. Disney has always celebrated them and helped in their being quite beloved in the public eye (even if, in Jobs' case, that beloved image became a smokescreen to hide very messy and unpleasant truths about the man behind it).

In many ways, Walt would find kinship and be quite awed himself at what they accomplished, and think of them as comrades in arms. Walt would certainly adore Henson's creating actual, vibrant characters with personalities of their own that can withstand the vagaries of time, Lucas' building of immense worlds and massive dramas to sustain them along with efforts to push the boundaries of visual effects (he'd also be quite sympathetic to Lucas' wanting to tinker with his own creations to make it feel more complete, and probably, if anything, might have gone further than even Lucas did if he had access to the same technology), Spielberg's arresting human dramas played out in a variety of different situations that perfectly straddle both innocence and experience, Miyazaki's weaving of an intense range of different tales and their themes of both childish wonder and the dangers of technology and man's hubris, Cameron's efforts to build narrative and symbolism alongside taking film technology to the next level, and Jobs' uncanny intuition to sense what the public wanted from their gadgets.

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