Walt Disney Is Dead, His Legacy Is Hated

in Disney, Disney Parks, Entertainment, Walt Disney World

Bob Iger and Walt Disney in front of Sleeping Beauty art

Credit: Inside the Magic

After a beautiful life that ultimately impacted billions, the fact remains that Walt Disney is dead. As the company enters its second century, sources show that this led to a ‘culture war’ that impacts both the Walt Disney Company and those who rely on the magic.

Mickey Mouse and Walt Disney
Credit: Disney / Inside the Magic

Walt Disney Company Origins: Disney is Dead

Though Walt Disney effectively ‘Horcruxed’ himself into the Walt Disney Company, the need to adapt put pressure on the contemporary resort and production company. Walt Disney passed away in 1966 after being the fountainhead who created Disney Parks, innovative animation, and brought the company through the Second World War.

Walt Disney’s Life and Death

During his time, the man received 26 Academy Awards, three Golden Globes, and won a single Emmy. Disney family members include Roy Disney and Elias Disney, but their history lives on in the Walt Disney Family Museum. When Walt was alive, the times were different; everything from technology to cultural values represented the pre-and post-World War II era.

Walt Disney and Mickey Mouse at Disneyland
Credit: Disney

Change is Afoot, Walter Elias Disney Becoming a Memory

When he died in 1966, it was viewed as a national loss for the United States; Disney’s death became the death of a piece of America. Yet the company held steadfast and remained operational for 100 years, entering its second century of existence.

The technological revolution, and subsequent social media revolution, changed everything. Now it’s up to the Walt Disney Co. to decide how to keep up with the times while retaining value. Determining how to skirt the party lines carefully, and balancing tradition and inclusion is the core issue of the ‘culture war.’

Ron DeSantis and Minnie Mouse in Disney World
Credit: Inside the Magic

Walt Disney World and Culture War in Florida

The ‘war’ stems from what reports from a prominent French publication cite as a shift in focus leading to a Disney World war that surrounds important issues like rage, parents’ rights, and the general themes from Disney’s history that families came to rely on.

The Walt Disney World theme park is a place of dreams, and it appears that, with Disney dead, the company decided to move in a different direction (despite the outrage of fans after Bob Iger invoked the late Walt Disney).

The Walt Disney Co. wanted to “‘get people to be more accepting of the multiple differences and cultures and races,’ in the words of CEO Bob Iger in 2017.” By later “adopting a more conservative stance, the American firm [Disney] has sharply dropped in popularity.”

This involves movies like Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and The Little Mermaid adaptations. It extends to changes to iconic places representing Americana – like every Disney Park from France to the United States to China and Hong Kong.

Left: Splash Mountain on a clear, blue-sky day. Right: DeSantis holds up his finger while making a speech.
Credit: Inside the Magic

Resistance to Change: Theme Park Tweaks and Inclusive Disney Films

For many, including family members of the late Walt, like Roy O Disney, fans believe he would be ‘turning in his grave.’ With changes present in most Disney films (especially those made after 2017), it shows that the death of Disney did harken to the end.

Mickey Mouse is gone, Magic Kingdom is not the same, and much of the attention of the Walt Disney Company goes towards the ‘culture wars’ in Florida, where Governor Ron DeSantis made clear his traditional values.

The proof of change lies in Splash Mountain, the Walt Disney World resort, Disney films, and every interaction with merchandise, cruises, and other Disney media. A modern face of the culture war, CEO Bob Iger (along with the rest of the Walt Disney Co.) is in a position to steer the ship into or away from a storm.

What do you think about the direction of the Walt Disney Company? Share your take in the comments below!

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