Born to Elias and Flora Disney on 5 December 1901 in Chicago, Illinois, Walter Elias Disney was a film director, engineer, animator and entrepreneur. His many films, animated character Mickey Mouse and innovative theme parks made him famous.
As a child, his family lived in various cities. In Marceline, Missouri grew to love trains from his uncle, Michael Martin who was a train engineer. He passion for drawing also emerged there. His childhood friend in Kansas City, Walter Pfeiffer’s family worked in vaudeville and motion picture films, this also stirred Walt Disney’s interest in theatre and film.
Upon his family’s return to Chicago in 1917, Walt Disney attended both McKinley High School and night classes at the Chicago Art Institute. He soon began designing art work for magazines, newspapers and movie posters. With Ubbe Iwerks, they opened a commercial studio.
With his brother, Roy Disney’s help, Walt Disney moved to Hollywood were he opened Walt Disney Productions, which is now called the Walt Disney Company. Lillian, Walt Disney’s future wife was employed as a secretary before they were married on 15 July 1925. They had to daughters: Diane Marie born in 1933 and they adopted Sharon Mae born in 1934.
In 1932, Walt Disney won the Academy Award for the creation of Mickey Mouse. He also has the most Oscar nominations (40) and seven Emmys. Walt Disney built Disneyland theme park in the 1950s. The second park, Disney World was conceived in 1964, but he died of lung cancer in 1966. Roy Disney completed the Disney World project in 1971.