A lifer at Disney, James Algar began as an animator before directing such classics as "Fantasia" and "Bambi" and later writing, producing, and directing for nature and wildlife documentaries and the long-running series "Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color." He landed his first job with Disney as an animator on the landmark feature "Snow White and Seven Dwarfs." His talent caught Walt's eye, and he was asked to direct the Mickey Mouse sequence "The Sorcerer's Apprentice" that became the centerpiece of the epic "Fantasia." He next directed portions of "Bambi" and a World War II propaganda film, "Victory Through Air Power." After the war, his focus shifted to documentaries about nature and wildlife, with the first entry in the "True-Life Adventure" series, "Seal Island," winning an Academy Award for best short. He continued to write and direct such projects, both shorts and features, while working on the TV series "Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color," writing, producing, and directing on different episodes over the course of a 20-year run. He produced other projects as well, including "Rascal," a feature about a boy who befriends a wily raccoon. In addition to his screen work, he wrote and produced the classic "Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln," as well as other attractions, for the 1964 World's Fair (and later, Disneyland).
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