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IT’S A SMALL WORLD: WALT DISNEY IN CONNECTICUT

I have come to the conclusion that Walt Disney is an inexhaustible subject. Every time I think I’ve read everything there is to know about the man and his career I’m surprised by a new book, video, or blog post. Just keeping up with the prodigious output of Bob McLain’s Theme Park Press is enough to keep mickey mouse vintage pez despenserany Disneyphile busy and fill any number of bookshelves, along with the ongoing releases from Disney Editions and Chronicle Books. Even Taschen, the preeminent publisher of lavish, oversized coffee-table volumes, has a giant Disney tome on the way. (Full disclosure: I am a contributor.)

Garry Apgar, whose books include The Mickey Mouse Reader (University Press of Mississippi) and Mickey Mouse: Emblem of the American Spirit (Walt Disney Family Museum), lives in Bridgeport, Connecticut and recently wrote a lengthy, well-researched article about Walt’s unlikely (and largely unknown) ties to his home state for Connecticut magazine, ranging from Ingersoll Watches to Yale University to Pez. I can’t resist sharing it piece with you.

It begins, “Walt Disney was born in Illinois, raised in Missouri and lived his entire adult life in California. No other state — other than Florida, of course — can lay meaningful claim to Disney in any way. Except, that is, for Connecticut, which boasts many fascinating links to the man who sired Mickey Mouse, including some surprising connections to his signature character.”

To read the piece and see its rare illustrations, just click HERE.

Leonard Maltin is one of the world’s most respected film critics and historians. He is best known for his widely-used reference work Leonard Maltin’s Movie Guide and its companion volume Leonard Maltin’s Classic Movie Guide, now in its third edition, as well as his thirty-year run on television’s Entertainment Tonight. He teaches at the USC School of Cinematic Arts and appears regularly on Reelz Channel and Turner Classic Movies. His books include The 151 Best Movies You’ve Never Seen, Of Mice and Magic: A History of American Animated Cartoons, The Great Movie Comedians, The Disney Films, The Art of the Cinematographer, Movie Comedy Teams, The Great American Broadcast, and Leonard Maltin’s Movie Encyclopedia. He served two terms as President of the Los Angeles Film Critics Association, is a voting member of the National Film Registry, and was appointed by the Librarian of Congress to sit on the Board of Directors of the National Film Preservation Foundation. He hosted and co-produced the popular Walt Disney Treasures DVD series and has appeared on innumerable television programs and documentaries. He has been the recipient of awards from the American Society of Cinematographers, the Telluride Film Festival, Anthology Film Archives, and San Diego’s Comic-Con International. Perhaps the pinnacle of his career was his appearance in a now-classic episode of South Park. (Or was it Carmela consulting his Movie Guide on an episode of The Sopranos?) He holds court at leonardmaltin.com. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook; you can also listen to him on his weekly podcast: Maltin on Movies. — [Artwork by Drew Friedman]

One comment

  1. Members of my family met Walt Disney while visiting Mystic Seaport back in the 1960’s. I have no doubt that some of the exhibits and ships he saw there manifested themselves in his theme parks.

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