Our Film of the Month for September is So Dear To My Heart, a rarely-screened feature that was the source for many later Disney projects, including Walt's own Red Barn that is now on display in Los Angeles’ Griffith Park and the Frontierland Railroad Station in Disneyland. When Walt began his hobby of hand-crafting miniatures, his first project was a scale model of the Granny's Cabin set from this film.
This unusual feature was a personal favorite of Walt Disney, since it re-created on film one of the most memorable times of his life, growing up on a small farm in the American Midwest at the turn of the Twentieth Century. “The greatest wealth a man may acquire is the wisdom he gains from living. And sometimes, out of the small beginnings, come the forces that shape a whole life" are the words that open the film—and describe the life of Walt Disney himself. Walt said: “So Dear was especially close to me. Why, that’s the life my brother and I grew up with as kids out in Missouri.”
But most of all, So Dear To My Heart is an ode to the loyalty and love of friends, neighbors, and family that spoke deeply to Walt. In that spirit, we offer this rare filmed glimpse of the family that Walt truly held dear to his heart.
Diane Disney Miller says, “That’s Dad riding mules with the grand-nieces of my mother's—the daughter of her niece, Marjorie: Nanette, Jeffrey, and Melinda. It’s in Palm Springs, it's Dad’s camera, but this had to be taken either by my mother, Bill Cottrell, or Marjorie. He's experimenting with neck-reigning his mule, and having fun!”
So Dear to My Heart screens daily through September at 1:00pm and 4:00pm (except Tuesdays, and September 17 and 24). Tickets are available at the Reception and Member Service Desk at the Museum, or online at www.waltdisney.org.