Walt And El Grupo
USA, 2008, 106 Minute Running Time
Genre/Subjects: Documentary, Historic
Special Limited Engagement April 16 - 18
Part of Create Denver Week!
35mm presentation - The year was 1941, and the world was on the brink of war. In an effort to improve relations between the Americas, the Roosevelt administration called upon one of Hollywood's most influential filmmakers to embark on a special goodwill tour. This documentary chronicles the amazing ten-week trip that Walt Disney and his hand-picked group of artists and filmmaking talent (later known as "El Grupo") took to South America. Just three years after the phenomenal success of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, the Walt Disney Studios experienced a chain of financial challenges that ultimately led to the infamous animators strike. Meanwhile, the Roosevelt administration had growing concerns about Nazi and Fascist influence in Latin America. In stark contrast to these trying times, Disney and his colorful group of artists found themselves on a lively trip full of hope and discovery. While gathering story material, immersing themselves in the culture, befriending local artists and meeting political leaders, their journey was also a de facto diplomatic mission, and as a result, the studio produced the classic films Saludos Amigos and The Three Caballeros. Walt & El Grupo time travels in Walt Disney's footsteps through the use of personal letters and stunning artwork from the trip, remembrances by descendants and survivors, and extraordinary never-before-seen footage. The film brings together an intertwined story of art and politics, the poignancy of a bygone age, and a legendary artist during one of his most trying times.
DIRECTOR: Theodore Thomas
US Distributor: Walt Disney Pictures
Official Film Website
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