Upcoming Event

Jake S. Friedman at Harvard Book Store

presents

The Disney Revolt:
The Great Labor War of
Animation's Golden Age

Date

Jul
7
Thursday
July 7, 2022
7:00 PM ET

Location

Harvard Book Store
1256 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138

Tickets

This event is free; no tickets are required.

Harvard Book Store welcomes animation historian JAKE S. FRIEDMAN—author of The Art of Blue Sky Studios and The Disney Afternoon—for a discussion of his newest book The Disney Revolt: The Great Labor War of Animation's Golden Age.

A Return to In-Person Events

Harvard Book Store is excited to re-introduce in-person programming this season. To ensure the safety and comfort of everyone in attendance, the following Covid-19 safety protocols will be in place at all of our Harvard Book Store events until further notice:

  • Face coverings are required of all staff and attendees when inside the store. Masks must snugly cover nose and mouth.

About The Disney Revolt

Soon after the birth of Mickey Mouse, one animator raised the Disney Studio far beyond Walt’s expectations. That animator also led a union war that almost destroyed it. Art Babbitt animated for the Disney studio throughout the 1930s and through 1941, years in which he and Walt were jointly driven to elevate animation as an art form, up through Snow White, Pinocchio, and Fantasia.

But as America prepared for World War II, labor unions spread across Hollywood. Disney fought the unions while Babbitt embraced them. Soon, angry Disney cartoon characters graced picket signs as hundreds of animation artists went out on strike. Adding fuel to the fire was Willie Bioff, one of Al Capone’s wiseguys who was seizing control of Hollywood workers and vied for the animators’ union.

Using never-before-seen research from previously lost records, including conversation transcriptions from within the studio walls, author and historian Jake S. Friedman reveals the details behind the labor dispute that changed animation and Hollywood forever.

Praise for The Disney Revolt

“Jake S. Friedman has done an impressive job of research, to put it mildly. Without knowing the sequence of events it’s impossible to understand how this bitter strike came about. Add to that the perceived insults, slights, and resentments and you have the stuff of great drama.” —Leonard Maltin, film critic and historian, author of Of Mice and Magic

“Author Jake S. Friedman takes us on a deep dive into Hollywood history delivered in a style that reads like a film noir page turner. I could not put this book down.” —Don Hahn, producer of Beauty and the Beast and The Lion King

“Gangsters, backroom deals, murder, and . . . cartoons? I’ve long been interested in the 1941 Disney strike, and Jake S. Friedman’s book does not disappoint. Well written and thoroughly researched—a great read!” —Pete Docter, director of Monsters Inc., Up, Inside Out, and Soul

Jake S. Friedman
Jake S. Friedman

Jake S. Friedman

Jake S. Friedman is an animation historian and author of The Art of Blue Sky Studios and The Disney Afternoon. He has appeared as an expert on TV documentaries and written for Animation Magazine, American History Magazine, the Huffington Post, and Philadelphia Daily News. He worked for ten years as an animation artist on television shows and features, and now works as a mental health specialist, teaching the occasional History of Animation course at NYU or FIT. He lives with his wife in New York City.

Harvard Book Store
1256 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138

Walking from the Harvard Square T station: 2 minutes

As you exit the station, reverse your direction and walk east along Mass. Ave. in front of the Cambridge Savings Bank. Cross Dunster St. and proceed along Mass. Ave for three more blocks. You will pass Au Bon Pain, JP Licks, and TD Bank. Harvard Book Store is located at the corner of Mass. Ave. and Plympton St.

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