Walt Disney, son of an Irish-Canadian, was fired from his first job for a lack of imagination. Can you imagine?
He was an animator and innovator and started a company with his brother and another partner. They had created a rabbit character and used a distributor in another state. When Walt travelled there for a meeting, he found out that the distributor had stolen the rights to the rabbit character and had taken all of Walt’s illustrators as well. It looked like he would be ruined.
Before he got on the train to come home that night, he messaged his family and brother and said everything would be all right. Even though he himself didn’t know if that was true. Then he sat down and started sketching.
He said, “Mickey Mouse popped out of my mind onto a drawing pad on a train ride from Manhattan to Hollywood at a time when business fortunes of my brother Roy and myself were at lowest ebb and disaster seemed right around the corner.”
And that was the beginning of an empire.
Walt said, “All the adversity I’ve had in my life, all my troubles and obstacles, have strengthened me… You may not realize it when it happens, but a kick in the teeth may be the best thing in the world for you.”
One of his first big movies was Snow White which was released during the Depression. It was the first animated movie made in colour in America. It brought in a massive $1.5 million dollars and won eight Oscars. He went on to create the movies Pinocchio, Fantasia, Dumbo, Bambi, Cinderella, Peter Pan, Sleeping Beauty and 101 Dalmatians. And he created the world-renowned theme parks Disneyland and Disney World.
Walt Disney reminds us that, “All our dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them.” He had many road blocks and failures in his life. But he never gave up.
He said, “It’s kind of fun to do the impossible.” What are the things that make you curious and light your fire? Do you think they are impossible? You won’t know unless you try.