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There's a trove of movie lore in this absorbing documentary about the 1941 goodwill tour that Walt Disney and key staffers undertook to South America at President Roosevelt’s behest to counter growing Nazi influence on the continent. Plagued by striking studio employees and dwindling capital and ticket revenues from war-torn Europe, Disney welcomed the opportunity to find creative inspiration in exotic locations—especially since the U.S. State Department guaranteed a half-million-dollar safety net for the ensuing films, Saludos Amigos (1942) and The Three Caballeros (1944). Director Theodore Thomas (son of Disney animator Frank Thomas) and producer Kuniko Okubo interview descendants of Disney’s cultural exchange partners and introduce recently rediscovered photos to explore a turning point in the studio’s history. In English and subtitled Spanish and Portuguese. PG, 106 min.
Official Site: waltandelgrupo.com
Director: Theodore Thomas
Writer: Theodore Thomas
Producer: Kuniko Okubo
Cast: Janet Lansburgh

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