Monday, August 31, 2009
As I read once more the life of Walt Disney, I realize that what is often interpreted as Walt's ego was Walt's decency; his decency to believe in himself, to fight, with his head up, against a world that, for all accounts, was clearly against him. In searching for excellence, Walt Disney's fight had the decency of being, first of all, a fight with himself: the unforgiving effort of constant self-overcoming.
Disney's weapons weren't those of aggression or mere assertion over enemies, but that of demanding from himself and, as a consequence, giving the world around him the only genuine way of measuring-up to oneself: impeccability. His demand of excellence to his product, much beyond being a mere gimmick to beat the market, or a conceited wish to be "the king of animation"(Gabler) reflected the dignity, the humbleness and the generosity of only giving one's best. For, as everyone knows, Disney was harder on himself than he was on his team.
Disney fight was the eternal and unforgiving effort that is needed to keep one's heart clean.
Posted by Duvivier at 10:05 AM
Saturday, August 29, 2009
I've received messages from people from different countries saying that no matter how much they liked Disney, they became "followers", after reading Walt Disney's life. I had that experience myself. I used to think that the person of Walt Disney is the completing half of his creativity, but the more I think about his life (as told by different biographers) the more I find the beauty of his personality and example surpasses even that of his immense creativity and legacy. The person of Walt Disney is passionate and even more passionable (here I invent a word, that in Portuguese reads "apaixonante") than his legacy. It is more or less what I said, when talking of the Mouse: "The world recognition won by Mickey is not greater than the integrity of Disney, at every step of the fight he survived, to bring this character to the eye of the public". Disney entertainment is fun and healing, but the person of Walt Disney is utterly inspirational, especially at this day and age, when one thirsts for faith. The making of the WDF Museum is, more than timely, blissful. How can one thank the WDF Foundation enough?
Sunday, August 23, 2009
I am in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, until Wednesday. I've been introduced to Leandro Hassum, a great TV and theater comedian, and, above it all, a Disney geek. He's been to Disney world dozens of times and is planning to take a group there, calling the program "In Disney with uncle Montenaro" the uncle being himself.
Disney is present everywhere in this country. Other than Disney magic, I guess it offers the softness of industrialized primitiveness, in the fundamental physicality and animal nature of Disney creations, to a place in which primitiveness is roughness, immediacy and irregularity. Like with Walt Disney himself, Disney creations bridge the elemental and the artificial, granting a childlike, dreamy, affectionately physical, and yet civilized way of reverting to that which is immediate and instinctive. Only here I finally found a small plastic Thumper, a character that, as old as he is, was never surpassed i insofar as cuteness and power of arousing maternal affection.
Posted by Duvivier at 9:28 PM
Saturday, August 22, 2009
With Mickey, Walt Disney asserted personality over the laws of physics and matter, like a metaphor of soul over matter. Disney made a hero out of the most insignificant, unwanted mammal. But Mickey's real heroism is fulfilling Walt's assertion of personality.
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Walt Disney, after visitation time, arrives at the hospital where his brother Roy recovers from a relapse of TB. Walt climbs in and begs his brother to go into business with him, vehemently showing the letter in which Margaret Winkler offers him a deal for the Alice series. Roy leaves the hospital, to never suffer from TB again. If this isn't short of a miracle, it is because it is already miracle. Alternated with this scene, Roy, years later, appears answering why he devoted his life to help his brother. He says Walt was irresistible and one simply wanted to help him. What must have been irresistible was Walt's intensity and passion. Roy had genius to risk his health and life, in order to help Walt. He obviously bonded with Walt's geniality. It takes one to know .
Posted by Duvivier at 10:30 PM
Sunday, August 16, 2009
Like she knocked on the door of young Walt Disney's studio, Virginia Davis knocked on Heaven's door. She must have entered it like she entered the beautiful world of Disney, as it first started. A world for the pure and eternally young at heart. A world for those that can be fascinated with what they see, and yet see beyond it: see what is invisible for the eyes. I guess that is why Virginia, in her old age, could talk of Walt with the wisdom of the little child she once was:
"What a guy!" She says, in the DVD "The man Behind the Myth"
Thursday, August 13, 2009
2nd Epigraph: "One does not see anything until one sees its Beauty" - Oscar Wilde. Fantasy, for me, is giving shape to the omnipotence of Beauty over reality. Like Walt Disney did and, in so doing, brought so much goodness. Walt Disney was the communication between Beauty and Goodness.
Posted by Duvivier at 8:45 AM
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
Mary Poppins talks for Walt, in her unique reconciling of duty and fun. She brought to the Banks' family rebelliousness and yet a lot of joy at doing their work. She showed that real duty comes from within and, as revolutionary as it is, breaking with, many times, the shallow, repetitive, label-like duty, it is the only one that brings forth creativity, and authenticity, that is, self-respect.
Posted by Duvivier at 10:57 AM
Monday, August 10, 2009
I put two declarations of Oscar Wilde as Epigraphs in "From Mars to Marceline", and here I will talk about the first:
"Everything to be true must become a religion"
Of course Wilde is not referring to organized religions of any sort. He is talking of religion as something one upholds above self, earthly concerns and everything that is relative, corruptible by time, gratuitously mutant.
Wilde is talking of religion as that which retains its sameness of value in spite of all the contingencies of life, something that remains absolute and is unconditionally loved. Like Walt Disney for Disney fans. Like the ongoing attempt to perpetuate his legacy by the Walt Disney Co, and his presence by the WDF.
Posted by Duvivier at 7:44 AM
Tuesday, August 4, 2009
Some people think that Walt Disney has granted his audience with escape from reality. Others, like me, are sure he granted us a greater degree of reality, a reality in which life is not only survival, but givingness, not just something to be paid for, but to create with.
Posted by Duvivier at 9:14 AM
Saturday, August 1, 2009
This last time I was in Disneyland I bought some tiny light boxes Disney themed. Staring at each one in particular, made me consider that the love Walt Disney had for miniatures has to do with the fact that before a tiny scene one feels all powerful and yet respectful; God like in relation to it and at the same time reverent of it.
A+ to the Disney industry on this one.
Posted by Duvivier at 10:22 AM