Abigail Disney, the granddaughter of Walt’s brother Roy, has a lot of opinions about the company and her great-uncle. She recently appeared on Marc Maron’s podcast to discuss many of them, including allegations that Walt Disney was, in fact, a fascist.
The heiress, who seems to delight in trashing her family’s company and name whenever she gets a chance and has doubled down on it during her latest interview. In the one-and-a-half-hour podcast episode, she did not hold back while also plugging her latest documentary, “The American Dream and Other Fairy Tales.”
She compared Walt to a “mad wizard” while calling Walt’s contribution to the company “the imagination stuff. ” Later, she called him a “chaotic genius” before going on to say, “that isn’t to say that he didn’t have business sense or whatever, but he wasn’t planning for an empire. He was driven by creativity.”
The host quickly turned the discussion to politics. When asked about Walt’s political leanings, Abigail Disney laughed and said, “he was a borderline rabid fascist. He and my grandfather both.” She explained that many movies created by the studio exemplified these values. She pointed out that the original Big Bad Wolf from one of Disney’s early films, The Three Little Pigs was a Jewish peddler. “They were not shy about delving into the stereotypes of their time if it served them to do so,” she said before explaining that “they knew they were making things that were offensive.”
Maron agreed and said, “Disneyland in and of itself in an enclosed way is an American fascist fantasy.” a delighted Abigail Disney enthusiastically agreed and laughed before walking it back by saying, “well, it is, and it isn’t.” She discussed the order of Disneyland and how unconscious you are of where you are once inside, and how remarkable the design was in building a perfect world. She states the entire design of the park is passive racism saying, “they saw the place as a narrative of their perfect world.”
The heiress to the Disney fortune went on to discuss rampant substance abuse within her family, including her own substance abuse. When Maron asked her if she was sober now, she hesitated and simple responded, “I’m complicated, I’ll say that.”