Walt Disney Archives
This Day in DisneyMay 23, 1922
Walt Disney Incorporates Laugh-O-Gram Films
Before there was Snow White, Mickey Mouse, Oswald the Lucky Rabbit or even the Alice comedies, Walt Disney was determined to get into the animation business, so he took a borrowed camera to the shed behind his house and created his first film. Soon, having raised $15,000 from family and friends, Walt hired a minimal staff and on this day in 1922, incorporated Laugh-O-Gram Films. Although he sold his animated Laugh-O-Grams to the Newman Theatre in Kansas City, in less than a year it was no laughing matter when the company declared bankruptcy when a distributor defaulted on his payments. With only $40 in cash, Walt headed for Hollywood, unbeknownst to him that he would indeed find great success in animation. Today the original Laugh-O-Gram studio is being restored by a non-profit organization headed by Dan Viets who told us, “Our project is making slow-but-sure progress. We have a new first floor, new steel framing, a new second floor and a new roof on the building where Walt created the first Walt Disney company!”
What's Old is News
More than 50,000 visitors were attracted to Disneyland on Monday, July 18, when the Park officially opened its gates to the general public. Reactions were mixed but highly enthusiastic, ranging from exclamations of "fantastic" to "unbelievable" and "too terrific for words to describe." Governor Goodwin J. Knight of the State of California assisted Walt Disney and some 25,000 invited guests at the official dedication ceremonies of Disneyland on the preceding day, Sunday, July 17.
Producer Bill Anderson, who worked closely with Walt Disney for more than two decades, recalls that pre-production and filming of the adventure classic, Swiss Family Robinson was, "the most difficult we ever encountered."
Avast there, ye lubbers, for the saltiest adventure ever to shake your sails!
Annette Funicello, the Elliott Brothers... During the 1960s, teens flocked to Disneyland to see these bands, and many more, at the Spring Fling.
Go back in time with us by checking out these original press materials and other archival treasures from the Walt Disney Archives.
During his 43-year Hollywood career, which spanned the development of the motion picture medium as a modern American art, Walter Elias Disney, a modern Aesop, established himself and his product as a genuine part of Americana.
Walt Disney arrived in California in the summer of 1923 with a lot of hopes but little else.
Take a nostalgic, informative and sometimes hilarious trip back in time to remember some of these classic Disney originals—from Clara Cluck to Pluto!
A complete list of Disney Legends—the special few who embody the Company's unique creative spirit as personified by its founder.
From Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs to our latest box-office smashes, here's a complete list of Disney films.
Browse through this bibliography of books written about Walt and Roy, The Walt Disney Company and Disney films, characters, music and theme parks.