Uncle Walt (lost unauthorised Disney short; 1964)

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SwartheSm.jpg

Animator and special effects artist, Robert Swarthe.

Status: Lost


Uncle Walt is a short 1964 cartoon by then-student Robert Swarthe as part of The UCLA Animation Workshop.[1] The only known mass public screening of the short took place in June 1972 at the American Film Institute, as part of a presentation titled "50 Years of American Animation."

The short begins with images of Walt Disney at various ages, followed by a slow pan across a graveyard full of the headstones of Perri the Squirrel and her family (a reference to Disney's 1957 live-action fantasy Perri, a film based on Felix Salten's 1938 novel of the same name), a very early-style Mickey and Minnie Mouse, various racist caricatures, and toilet humour. After this, a sequence featuring the female centaurs from Fantasia working in a red light district with Goofy as their pimp and another scene in which various disturbing scenes from Disney films (including a scene from Snow White in which the Queen transforms into a hag) are shown, all while a group of rabbit children look on in horror. The final images in the short depict the seven dwarves from Snow White gathering around Mickey Mouse in a "Mouse-ka-mausoleum", worshiping him in a scene reminiscent of one seen in the original 1937 production.[2]

For a time, a rumour circulated that the short was actually produced by Disney employees in 1954, but this was quickly debunked as it contains references to the film Perri, which was released in 1957. Uncle Walt has not been publicly screened since 1972, and it is unknown if anyone other than Swarthe has a copy of the film.

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