Working at Disney

Can you tell me how you landed your job at Disney and how it is to work there? And do you have any tips for someone who really wants to have an internship at the Disney animation studios? Thank you in advance! ????
Denise Veenendaal on July 21 at 02:23 PM in Jobs /Career guidance
2 Answer(s)
Hello!  So I started at Disney in 2007 and was brought into the Apprenticeship program to train for the next 2d film coming up which was Princess and the Frog.  Before starting at Disney, I was at Calarts for four years studying Character Animation.  I had a mentor who  I met there, who taught an animation class.  He was actually good friends with Ron Clements and John Musker so I had a very good opportunity to get noticed if I put together a strong enough film for my fourth year.  So when i finished "Them there Eyes" and was accepted into the Calarts Producer's Show, Ron and John, who were the directors for Princess and the Frog, got a chance to see my student film. Once they saw it, apparently they told Bert Klein, who was my mentor at the time, that they could use me on the show.  It worked out because of really hard work, good contacts and some lucky timing haha.  But I can't emphasis enough that the hard work that I put into my animation studies and finishing this film was a pre requisite for everything.  

I do believe that it is easier to get your portfolio/demo reel noticed now days because of the internet and how much easier it is to get access to industry professionals.  All you need to do now is make sure you put the hard work in to get your portfolio in top shape in order to stand out and get accepted.  How do you do that?  You can either go to art/animation school, or an online school to learn. Or you can also get coaching from this site. The Coaching section is currently under development at the moment but will be released soon. You will be able to connect with industry professionals for feedback on your work.  The key is to create the daily habits that will help you learn and grow consistently over time. 

Hope this answer helps!

them there eyes, - fourth year Calarts student film - character animation from mario furmanczyk on Vimeo.





Mario Furmanczyk on July 21 at 04:48 PM Edited
Thank you so much for your answer!!! I really love the movie you made!
on August 16 at 05:58 AM
Hi Denise, 
I started at Disney at the end of 2015 right as they were fishing up on Zootopia, I'm one of the newest animators there! Getting into Disney was a long journey. Not everyone comes out of school with an awesome film like Mario's!
 
After graduating from Sheridan College in Canada, I started just by working anywhere I could and getting all the experience I could. I worked for 8 different studios (...maybe more, I lost count) before getting into the Talent Development program at Disney. 
Every career choice I made came down to "what is going to make me a stronger animator?".
 
Over the years while going from job to job, I was also doing animation tests on the side. That was a big part of my growth as an animator. If the work I was doing during the day at my job wasn't something that I thought would get me a feature animation job (or wasn't pushing me enough creativly), I tried doing tests. And I would also try showing these tests to other animators I trusted to get feedback from them. 
Eventually being persistent with that paid off. I had some professional work on my demo reel that I sent to Disney but from what I've heard they reacted best to my personal work that was 100% my own. 
 
So I think it really comes down to working hard and trying to soak up as much knowledge as you can. Timing is a big thing that's out of your control, but luck favors the prepared! Keep animating and stay persistent :) 
Boris Maras on August 01 at 11:46 PM Edited
Thank you so much for your answer!!!
on August 16 at 05:56 AM