Daily Figment 16

daily_figment_02With Snow White winding down at the time, The Sorcerer’s Apprentice seemed to strike a nerve with Walt. If the former was the story of Walt’s youth, the latter was the story of his new power and his vexed relationship to it. Bill Tytla would draw the sorcerer with Walt’s famously cocked eyebrow and had named him Yen Sid, “Disney” backward, to make the connection between the sorcerer’s magic omnipotence and Walt’s. In the animation universe Walt Disney did control the elements as Yen SidYen Sid did in the cartoon. He was the master, the only one with the “whole equation” in his head, while his minions were the apprentices, helpless without him. But another possible interpretation may have been in Walt’s own mind as he awaited the reception to Snow White: that he was not the sorcerer but was himself the hapless apprentice who dons the sorcerer’s hat and summons the elements only to discover that they overwhelm him.

–Neal Gabler, Walt Disney: the Triumph of the American Imagination. 2006. pp 295-296

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