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Friday, July 13, 2007

Snow White in REAL danger...

This insight just in from my old mentor Børge Ring:

"Oh you thundering fools. Why don't you stop this madness?
Cannot you see that we shall all be destroyed by it?"

This was the text on a anonymous handwritten note tacked up on a message board in Walt Disneys studio some time during the last hectic months of finishing Snow White. Nerves were on end. All of Hollywood and half the staff of Disney's own studio did NOT believe in the success of a cartoon that had the length of a live-action feature. Thus a blast of stark diffidence i­n a "public" place in the studio was highly unwanted at that instant.

Dave Hand promptly took a grafologist by the arm and had him compare the note with whatever handwritten material by personel could be found in the administrative department.
The author of the note was identified. It was a young assistant and he sat terrified before the man who had directed "Pluto's Judgement Day." Dave did not fire him. Instead he explained to him calmly and carefully what influence "pranks" would add under the circumstances.
Thoroughly briefed the guy staggered back to his lightbox.

A more prominent "non believer" was Frank Churchill, the film's composer. He had moved from Disneys studio to a clinic to be cured of alcoholism after having finished the creative part of his job. He had bet Dave Hand a hundred dollars that the project would flop.
A couple of months after Snow White's stormy success a cured Churchill drove to the Disney Studio, walked into Daves office and laid a 100 $$ note on the table before him.

"What did you do with the note?" I asked,
"I had it framed and hung on the wall" said Dave.

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Anonymous Larry Ruppel says...

Screenwriter William Goldman once wrote that the only three words you need to know that explains much about Hollywood is:
"Nobody knows anything".

Your "Snow White" story is another fine example of Goldman's theory. I'm sure there were people at the studio who had similar reservations about the whole Disneyland project.

Monday, July 23, 2007 at 11:47:00 AM PDT  

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