Imagine uncovering the dazzling history of Disney from the perspective of the unsung heroes behind the magic. Don Peri ’72 and Pete Docter, Pixar’s chief creative officer and the genius behind Monsters Inc., Up, Inside Out, and Soul, are bringing these obscure but remarkable stories to light in their new book, *Directing at Disney* (Disney Editions, 2024).

Peri, an Aggie alumnus and Disney historian, joined forces with Docter to shine a spotlight on the lesser-known directors of classic Disney films. Their book draws from 44 interviews, providing an intimate glimpse into the lives of those who shaped animations like *Snow White* and *Cinderella*. “These are people that almost nobody knows about,” Peri explains, filling a crucial gap in animation history.

The story behind *Directing at Disney* is as captivating as its content. During a 1974 meeting with former Disney director and fellow Aggie, Ben Sharpsteen, Peri’s fascination with Disney legends lit up. Sharpsteen, an honorary degree recipient from UC Davis, shared enchanting tales and precious memories with Peri that began Peri’s 50-year journey into Disney’s past, leading to books like *Working with Walt* and the latest collaboration with Docter.

The connection with Docter began in 2008 when Peri provided an in-depth interview with Wilfred Jackson, a legendary Disney animator. This shared passion for Disney history blossomed into friendship and a decade-long journey to create their illuminating book. Through tales of admiration and struggles under Walt Disney’s demanding yet visionary leadership, Peri and Docter paint a comprehensive picture of life at the studio.

Before its release, the authors have exciting plans, including talks at D23: The Ultimate Disney Fan Event, and an exhibit at the Walt Disney Family Museum. The book also acknowledges Disney’s evolving diversity, with Peri reflecting on the progress since the era dominated by white male directors.

What do you think of this deep dive into Disney’s history? Share your thoughts and engage with other Disney aficionados in the comments! Don’t forget to share this fascinating story with fellow Disney lovers. For more incredible tales from the world of Disney, visit [Mickey News](