[ROBERT E.] STRIPLING [CHIEF INVESTIGATOR]: Mr. Disney, will you state
your full name and present address, please?
WALTER DISNEY: Walter E. Disney, Los Angeles, California.
RES: When and where were you born, Mr. Disney?
WD: Chicago, Illinois, December 5, 1901.
RES: December 5, 1901?
WD: Yes, sir.
RES: What is your occupation?
WD: Well, I am a producer of motion-picture cartoons.
RES: Mr. Chairman, the interrogation of Mr. Disney will be done by Mr.
THE CHAIRMAN [J. PARNELL THOMAS]: Mr. Smith.
[H. A.] SMITH: Mr. Disney, how long have you been in that business?
WD: Since 1920.
HAS: You have been in Hollywood during this time?
WD: I have been in Hollywood since 1923.
HAS: At the present time you own and operate the Walt Disney Studio at
WD: Well, I am one of the owners. Part owner.
HAS: How many people are employed there, approximately?
WD: At the present time about 600.
HAS: And what is the approximate largest number of employees you have
had in the studio?
WD: Well, close to 1,400 at times.
HAS: Will you tell us a little about the nature of this particular
studio, the type of pictures you make, and approximately how many per
WD: Well, mainly cartoon films. We make about twenty short subjects,
and about two features a year.
HAS: Will you talk just a little louder, Mr. Disney?
WD: Yes, sir.
HAS: How many, did you say?
WD: About twenty short subject cartoons and about two features per
HAS: And some of the characters in the films consist of
WD: You mean such as Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck and Snow White and
the Seven Dwarfs , and things of that sort.
HAS: Where are these films distributed?
WD: All over the world.
HAS: In all countries of the world?
WD: Well, except the Russian countries.
HAS: Why aren't they distributed in Russia, Mr. Disney?
WD: Well, we can't do business with them.
HAS: What do you mean by that?
WD: Oh, well, we have sold them some films a good many years ago. They
bought the Three Little Pigs  and used it through Russia. And
they looked at a lot of our pictures, and I think they ran a lot of
them in Russia, but then turned them back to us and said they didn't
want them, they didn't suit their purposes.
HAS: Is the dialogue in these films translated into the various
WD: Yes. On one film we did ten foreign versions. That was Snow White
and the Seven Dwarfs.
HAS: Have you ever made any pictures in your studio that contained
propaganda and that were propaganda films?
WD: Well, during the war we did. We made quite a few-working with
different government agencies. We did one for the Treasury on taxes
and I did four anti-Hitler films. And I did one on my own for air
HAS: From those pictures that you made, have you any opinion as to
whether or not the films can be used effectively to disseminate
HAS: As a matter of fact, Mr. Disney, you experienced a strike at your
studio, did you not?
HAS: And is it your opinion that that strike was instituted by members
of the Communist Party to serve their purposes?
WD: Well, it proved itself so with time, and I definitely feel it was
a Communist group trying to take over my artists and they did take
CHAIRMAN: Do you say they did take them over?
WD: They did take them over.
HAS: Will you explain that to the committee, please?
WD: It came to my attention when a delegation of my boys, my artists,
came to me and told me that Mr. Herbert Sorrell
HAS: Is that Herbert K. Sorrell?
WD: Herbert K. Sorrell, was trying to take them over. I explained to
them that it was none of my concern, that I had been cautioned to not
even talk with any of my boys on labor. They said it was not a matter
of labor, it was just a matter of them not wanting to go with Sorrell,
and they had heard that I was going to sign with Sorrell, and they
said that they wanted an election to prove that Sorrell didn't have
the majority, and I said that I had a right to demand an election. So
when Sorrell came, I demanded an election. Sorrell wanted me to sign
on a bunch of cards that he had there that he claimed were the
majority, but the other side had claimed the same thing. I told Mr.
Sorrell that there is only one way for me to go and that was an
election and that is what the law had set up, the National Labor
Relations Board was for that purpose. He laughed at me and he said
that he would use the Labor Board as it suited his purposes and that
he had been sucker enough to go for that Labor Board ballot and he had
lost some election-I can't remember the name of the place-by one vote.
labor case out of it. We must keep the American labor unions clean. We
have got to fight for them.
HAS: That is all of the questions I have, Mr. Chairman.
CHAIRMAN: Mr. Vail.
R. B. VAIL: No questions.
CHAIRMAN: Mr. McDowell.
J. MCDOWELL: No questions.
JM: I have no questions. You have been a good witness.
WD: Thank you.
CHAIRMAN: Mr. Disney, you are the fourth producer we have had as a
witness, and each one of those four producers said, generally
speaking, the same thing, and that is that the Communists have made
inroads, have attempted inroads. I just want to point that out because
there seems to be a very strong unanimity among the producers that
have testified before us. In addition to producers, we have had actors
and writers testify to the same. There is no doubt but what the movies
are probably the greatest medium for entertainment in the United
States and in the world. I think you, as a creator of entertainment,
probably are one of the greatest examples in the profession. I want to
congratulate you on the form of entertainment which you have given the
American people and given the world and congratulate you for taking
time out to come here and testify before this committee. He has been
very helpful. Do you have any more questions, Mr. Stripling?
HAS: I am sure he does not have any more, Mr. Chairman.
RES: No; I have no more questions.
CHAIRMAN: Thank you very much, Mr. Disney.