This Isn’t The Disney That I Knew

I have a lot of friends who worked for Disney over the last decade, didn’t like it, and used ugly words like “Mauschwitz” and “Duckau” to describe it. Disney was one of the epitomes of a hardnosed corporate behemoth.

By my local paper is all over a story today that kind of breaks that perception – you may have seen it on Gizmodo:

HUNTINGTON BEACH – Colby Curtin, a 10-year-old with a rare form of cancer, was staying alive for one thing … a movie.

From the minute Colby saw the previews to the Disney-Pixar movie Up, she was desperate to see it. Colby had been diagnosed with vascular cancer about three years ago, said her mother, Lisa Curtin, and at the beginning of this month it became apparent that she would die soon and was too ill to be moved to a theater to see the film.

After a family friend made frantic calls to Pixar to help grant Colby her dying wish, Pixar came to the rescue.

The company flew an employee with a DVD of Up, which is only in theaters, to the Curtins’ Huntington Beach home on June 10 for a private viewing of the movie.

That doesn’t sound like the Disney we knew – and maybe that’s because it’s really Pixar, which was bought by Disney and now runs the animation studio.

What’s amazing to me, as a student of corporate behavior is this:

By June 9, Colby could no longer be transported to a theater and her family feared she would die without having seen the movie.

At that point, [family friend] Orum-Moore, who desperately wanted Colby to get her last wish, began to cold-call Pixar and Disney to see if someone could help.

Pixar has an automated telephone answering system, Orum-Moore said, and unless she had a name of a specific person she wanted to speak to, she could not get through. Orum-Moore guessed a name and the computer system transferred her to someone who could help, she said.

Pixar officials listened to Colby’s story and agreed to send someone to Colby’s house the next day with a DVD of “Up,” Orum-Moore recalled.

From first contact to someone on a plane in less than 24 hours. Freaking amazing.

All I can say about this is that I’d gladly send a bottle of Windward Pinot to whoever made this decision…anyone have a name?

One thought on “This Isn’t The Disney That I Knew”

  1. Just as Apple v3.0, upon the return of Steve, was substantially NeXT in an older logo, once you looked at the key management moves….

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