My decision to see ‘Waking Sleeping Beauty’ was pretty last minute, I just got up at seven on Saturday morning and looked for tickets, I made the right decision; purchasing a ticket for ‘Waking Sleeping Beauty’. It was one of my favorite films from the festival.
‘Waking Sleeping Beauty’ is a documentary about the revitalization of Disney animation from 1984-1994. It chronicles a fascinating power struggle between Disney CEO Michael Eisner, Nephew of Walt, Roy Disney and head of animation Jeffery Katzenberg. From the lowest point in Disney history, in the early eighties when the animation department was moved out of the original building that Walt built to a run down off-site location, most of the animators felt they would all lose their jobs by the end of the week. It was even suggested that Disney get out of the motion picture business! This dismal state of affairs is how ‘Waking Sleeping Beauty’ begins and it carries us right through to one of the many high points in Disney history: ‘Beauty and the Beast’ had just been released and ‘The Lion King’ was going into production.
‘The Lion King’ producer Don Hahn directed ‘Waking Sleeping Beauty’ and did a very good job at showing a non-biased look at the craziness of the Disney Animation world from 1984-1994.
I loved some of the very candid moments in the film, we see a young Tim Burton (he hasn’t changed much), we hear the voice of a young John Lasseter. We are shown first hand the antics of a group of pent up, predominately male twenty-something-year-olds. It’s a lot of fun and very informative.
2017 Update: I’ve taken most of my movie reviews off the blog because they no longer seem relevant (they never were), however, I’ve left this because it really was a fantastic film.