The Triumph of the American Imagination
By Neal Gabler
(Vintage, Paperback, 9780679757474, 912pp.)
Publication Date: October 9, 2007
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The definitive portrait of one of the most important cultural figures in American history.
Walt Disney was a true visionary whose desire for escape, iron determination and obsessive perfectionism transformed animation from a novelty to an art form, first with Mickey Mouse and then with his feature films–most notably Snow White, Fantasia, and Bambi. In his superb biography, Neal Gabler shows us how, over the course of two decades, Disney revolutionized the entertainment industry. In a way that was unprecedented and later widely imitated, he built a synergistic empire that combined film, television, theme parks, music, book publishing, and merchandise. Walt Disney is a revelation of both the work and the man–of both the remarkable accomplishment and the hidden life.
Neal Gabler is the author of An Empire of Their Own: How the Jews Invented Hollywood, which won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for history. His biography Winchell: Gossip, Power and the Culture of Celebrity was named best nonfiction book of the year by Time. He appears regularly on the media review program Fox News Watch, and writes often for The New York Times and the Los Angeles Times. He is currently a senior fellow at the Norman Lear Center for the Study of Entertainment and Society in the Annenberg School for Communications at the University of Southern California. He lives with his wife in Amagansett, New York.
“Mesmerizing. . . . There’s nothing Mickey Mouse about this terrific biography. . . . The definitive portrait of Walt Disney, the Dream-King.” —Washington Post Book World“Gabler’s restless eye invigorates each page. . . . Part of the author’s formidable achievement is to take the intricacies of Disney’s devoted artistry and intertwine them with [his] life.” —Los Angeles Times Book Review “Far outshines any previous Disney bio, both in scope and in specificity. The domestic details are revelatory. . . . Walt Disney is looking at us–seemingly for the first time.” —Entertainment Weekly “Illuminating. . . . Engrossing. . . . Gabler paints a vivid portrait.”—The New York Times Book Review