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BURBANK
In 1937, Disney's innovative first full length animated feature, SNOW WHITE AND THE SEVEN DWARFS, was released to critical acclaim and worldwide success. In order to expand and meet the expectations of his audience, Walt saw a need to increase the size of his studio. With the profits from SNOW WHITE, he made a deposit on 51 acres of land in Burbank and began designing a modern studio specifically for the purpose of making animated films.

Walt was personally involved with all aspects of designing the studio. From the layout of the buildings to design of the animators' chairs, nothing was left to chance. His main concern was to produce a self-sufficient, state-of-the-art production factory that provided all the essential facilities for the entire production process. The Animation Building, housing the Disney artists and animators, was planned in the center of the lot. Across a small street were built the Inking and Painting and the Camera buildings, where the artwork was completed and photographed. Next to Camera, in the Cutting Building, the post production process occurred. Sound facilities included dubbing, scoring, effects, and voice recording studios. Many of the buildings were linked together by an underground tunnel, so even in bad weather, the process of making animated films was not disrupted. To enhance the campus-like setting, all of the utilities were placed underground which was an innovation for 1940.

During the 1940s and 1950s many prominent animated features were produced at the studio in Burbank, including FANTASIA, BAMBI, CINDERELLA, ALICE IN WONDERLAND, and PETER PAN.

Beginning in the late 1940s, Disney launched into the production of live-action features and television programs. The first totally live action film was TREASURE ISLAND in 1950. The Studio Lot was subsequently expanded during the 1950s, to include additional sound stages and production craft facilities.

Sound Stages
Many of the interior scenes for Disney films were shot on five live-action sound stages.

Stage 1 is part of the original lot that was built in 1940. It was first used for filming the live-action scenes for FANTASIA. Stage 2 was built in 1949 in conjunction with Jack Webb, who used the stage for the filming of the television series DRAGNET. A popular television show filmed there was THE MICKEY MOUSE CLUB. Stage 2 is one of the largest sound stages in Los Angeles at approximately 31,000 square feet.

In 1954, Sound Stage 3 was built specifically for 20,000 LEAGUES UNDER THE SEA, complete with watertank. Stage 4, completed in 1958, was first used for DARBY O'GILL AND THE LITTLE PEOPLE. In 1988, it was divided into two television stages, thus creating Stages 4 and 5.

Stages 6 & 7
Stages 6 & 7 were built in 1997 and have housed such productions as, MY WIFE & KIDS, 8 SIMPLE RULES FOR DATING MY TEENAGE DAUGHTER, GEENA and BROTHERS AND SISTERS.

Well-known tenants on our stages have included Disney classics such as DAVY CROCKETT, MARY POPPINS, POLLYANA, THE LOVE BUG, BLACKBEARD'S GHOST, PETE'S DRAGON, BEDKNOBS & BROOMSTICKS, PEARL HARBOR, ARMAGEDDON and PRINCESS DIARIES. Other well-known tenants have included HOME IMPROVEMENT, ELLEN, MTV MOVIE AWARDS, MADONNA rehearsals, PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN, ALIAS, NATIONAL TREASURE, and HANNAH MONTANA the movie.

Riverside Lot
Across the street from the Studio now stands the new Feature Animation Building and the ABC Building. This is where Walt was planning to build a place called Mickey Mouse Park. There were to be lifelike statues of Mickey and Donald, and guests could take pictures with their favorite characters and enjoy a train ride. However, as Walt's ideas continued to grow, he realized more space was needed to fulfill his dreams. Shortly thereafter he acquired more than 200 acres of orange groves in Anaheim, California. Those orange groves became the site of Disneyland.

Shops
The back-lot shops were built to provide the many crafts and services required by live action productions. The Machine Shop, which is no longer in use, housed machines and equipment that produced innovative camera and projection objects for the film industry. During the construction of Disneyland in the mid-fifties, this shop's engineers designed and hand-built many of the automobiles, train parts, boats, trams and carts that were required by the new park. Hollywood Records now occupies the building.

Close by is the Electric / Plumbing Building containing machines and equipment for repairing and maintaining the many systems within the Studio complex.

Nearby was the Staff Shop where they made molds, plaster casts, and fiberglass figures, many of which are in use at Disneyland, Walt Disney World, Paris, Hong Kong and Tokyo.

Adjacent to our landmark water tower was the Special Effects Shop, where our craftspeople created the myriad of unique effects that have come to be associated with Disney. Flying cars, spaceships, miniature paddle wheelers, and medieval armor that came to life are just some of the effects produced by this department.

Other shops on the backlot include Paint, Craft Services, Sign Graphics and the Mill.