Walt Disney is a pioneer and innovator of cartoon films, and the possessor of one of the most fertile and unique imaginations the world has ever known. He is a creator, a imaginative, and aesthetic person who created Disneyland. He and his staff created numerous fictional characters including Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck. Disney himself was the original voice for Mickey. During his lifetime, he received four honorary Academy Awards and won 22 Academy Awards from a total of 59 nominations, giving him more awards and nominations than any other individual in history. Walt's optimism came from his unique ability to see the entire picture. His views and visions, came from the fond memory of yesteryear, and persistence for the future.
Walter Elias Disney was born to his father, Elias Disney, an Irish-Canadian and his mother, Flora Call Disney, who was of German-American descent. Walt was one in five children, four boys and a girl. Walt had very early interests in art, he would often sell drawings to neighbors to make extra money. Though his father could be quite strict, Walt was encouraged by his mother, and older brother to pursue his art career. He studied art and photography by going to McKinley High School in Chicago in 1917. He became the cartoonist for the school newspaper, drawing patriotic topics on World War I. Once Walt returned from France, he began to pursue a career in commercial art. He started a small company called Laugh-O-Grams, which eventually fell bankrupt. With his suitcase, and twenty dollars, Walt headed to Hollywood to start anew.
Walt was married to Lillian Marie Disney, an ink and paint artist, in 1925. They had two daughters, Diane and Sharon. In 1966, Disney was diagnosed with lung cancer and died on December 15, 1966, at the age of 65.