Ward Kimball, one of the original Disney animators, referred to by Walt Disney as one of the trusted "Nine Old Men," (supreme court of animation) died in Arcadia California on July 8. He was 88.
Kimball was famous for his creation of the character Jiminy Cricket, The Cheshire Cat, The March Hare, The Mad Hatter, and for redesigning Mickey Mouse in 1938. He joined the Disney Studios in 1934, and rose up in the ranks to become a directing animator on such classics as "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs," "Pinocchio," "Fantasia" and "Peter Pan." He directed Disney Oscar-winning shorts "Toot, Whistle, Plunk and Boom" in 1953 and "It's Tough To Be a Bird" in 1969.Unknown to many Disney watchers, Kimball was also student of UFOs and Outer Space. He had a large collection of UFO books and magazines, according to Navy physicist Bruce Maccabee who met with him in 1980. Maccabee had been to Kimball,s house to recruit him as one of the 10 original board members for the Fund for UFO Research. Kimball accepted the position.
Kimball worked with technical advisor Werhner Von Braun to write and direct three key outer space documentaries for the "Disneyland" television series. The three documentaries were, "Man in Space," "Man and the Moon," and "Mars and Beyond." Kimball referred to them as, "the creative highpoint of my career. According to Disney spokesman Howard E. Green, the three outer space documentaries are "often credited with popularizing the concept of the government's space program during the 1950s.
The first of these, the 1955 "Man in Space, was so popular (viewed by over 42 million people) that according to Kimball, President Eisenhower phoned Walt Disney from the White House looking for a copy of the production. When Disney asked Eisenhower why he wanted it Eisenhower replied, "Well, I'm going to show it to all those stove-shirt generals who don't believe we're going to be up there!
It was Kimball, who at the July 1979 MUFON UFO symposium in California, told of his interest in the subject of UFOs. Then to a stunned audience he related the story of how the American government had approached Walt Disney himself prior to Sputnik to make a UFO documentary to help acclimatize the American population to the reality of extraterrestrials.
Kimball stated in the speech that around 1955 or 1956 Walt Disney was contacted by the USAF and asked to cooperate on a documentary about UFOs. The USAF offered to supply actual UFO footage, which Disney would be allowed to use in his film.
According to Kimball, Disney went along with the USAF plan, which was not unusual. The use of Walt Disney cartoons, after all had been suggested by the 1953 CIA Robertson UFO panel as part of a public-education program involving the mass media to "strip the UFO phenomenon of its special status and eliminatethe aura of mystery it has acquired."
The discussions between the CIA people and Disney may actually have taken place, because in August 1955, Frederick C. Durant 111, who was a member of the Robertson CIA panel showed Walt Kimball's documentary "Man in Space" during the Sixth Congress of the International Astronomical Federation in Copenhagan.
Disney had also cooperated with the government in producing a number of war documentaries during World War 11 like the documentary "Victory through Air Power. In one year, during the war, Disney turned out over four hundred thousand feet of government films.
Disney was also, according to a December 16, 1954 FBI document made a SAC Contact for the FBI, which elevated him from his former position as an informant for the agency. The confidential internal FBI memo read,
"Because of Mr. Disney,s position as the foremost producer of cartoon files in the motion picture industry, and his prominence and wide acquaintanceship in film production matters, it is believed that he can be of valuable assistance to this office . . . "
Once Walt Disney had finished his meetings with the USAF, he began to work on the requested UFO documentary for the public. He asked his animators to think up what an alien would look like. Meanwhile, he waited for the Air Force to deliver the promised film. After some period of time the Air Force re-contacted Disney and told him the film offer had to be withdrawn. There would be no UFO footage as promised. Kimball told researcher Stanton Friedman that once he found out there would be no delivery of UFO film, he personally spoke with an Air Force Colonel who told him, "there indeed was plenty of UFO footage, but that neither Ward, nor anyone else, was going to get access to it. This caused a temporary halt to the project. As one account by Bruce Maccabee described it,
"Disney cancelled the project, but by this time a lot of animated film of creatures, had been completed by his artists. So Disney went ahead and made a short 'documentary' anyway, featuring Jonathan Winters impersonating various 'characters' associated with typical UFO lore."
"I specifically recall Mr. Winters as an old lady/grandmother who saw a UFO and reported it... then he portrayed the Air Force officer who investigated the sightings and offered explanations. He also portrayed a little boy in a room who had a telescope looking up at the stars and, to the little boy's amazement, an alien came through the telescope into his room. Of course the boys father didn't believe that story."
The UFO documentary was never shown in public, but Kimball did show the 15-20 minute piece at the 1979 UFO Symposium. The movie, however, did not contain any of the dramatic UFO footage everyone had been promised. What is important to note about this Kimball story about the attempt by the United States government to "spill the beans is that it was not the only time such an incident occurred.
In 1972-73 Colonel Robert Coleman, former USAF Project Blue Book spokesman, and former ATIC Commander Colonel George Weinbrenner, made an offer of "800 feet of film . . .as well as several thousand feet of additional material of dramatic UFO material to documentary film producers Robert Emenegger and Allan Sandler at the Pentagon. They would be allowed to use the UFO footage in a special film project they had been asked to join.
The promised film was reportedly dramatic footage of an encounter between the occupants of a landed UFO and officials at Holloman Air Force Base. It impressed Emenegger who described what he saw in 1988, "What I saw and heard was enough to convince me that the phenomenon of UFOs is real very real.
The project was described to the two producers as a documentary on a secret government project. When the two men discovered that the topic of the secret project would be UFOs, they were surprised because "they had assumed that the matter had been resolved with the closure of Project Blue Book in 1969.
The documentary was to be sponsored by the Department of Defense in a claimed attempt to do a public relations turnaround, which was needed because of the Vietnam War. At least that is the story Emenegger and Sandler were told by Bill Coleman. A number of different subjects were proposed for the documentaries, but no other subject, other than UFOs, were brought up.
The two documentary producers were told that the government was now ready to release all the facts about the alien presence on earth. They were shown evidence that they could use for their tell-all documentary. This evidence included:
- Photographs and films of UFOs. - Pictures of grey-skinned alien beings.
- A 16mm movie film of an alien in the company of an Air Force officer. The two men were told that this alien had survived a 1949 crash and it had been kept at a safe house in Los Alamos until its death in 1952.
- 800 feet of film showing a landed encounter between three aliens and Holloman Air Base officials during a landing that had reportedly occurred there in May 1971. Several thousand feet of additional material was also offered.
- Photos of UFOs taken by astronauts, which NASA had formally denied the existence of.
As the documentary neared completion, the two producers waited for the promised dramatic alien landing footage. Colonel Bill Coleman who had first made the offer to provide it in 1972, however, withdrew it. According to what Emenegger told researcher Tim Good, Coleman had declared, "The timing was politically inappropriate, due to the Watergate scandal.
The Emenegger/Sandler documentary, "UFOS, Past, Present, and Future released by Sandler Films in 1974, was forced to use standard animation, background film taken at Holloman, and "elaborate drawing of the so-called aliens. At least that is what the producers thought when they first ran the film. Later, indications arose that indicated 12 seconds of the actual Holloman landing might have been part of the "training film material they were provided. As an interesting footnote to the Disney story, Emenegger reported that he and Sandler had also talked with the Disney people during the time period they were working on the documentary. The people who they spoke to at the Disney studios "seemed to be involved and interested, but not have any particularly startling data.
In 1983, the United States government made yet another offer of dramatic UFO film for a UFO documentary. The offer was made to documentary film producer Linda Moulton Howe and HBO. They were approached and offered the same Holloman landing film along with a film of the live alien that lived in a Los Alamos safe house from 1949-1952.
While preparing to make a UFO documentary for HBO, Howe was given information by Richard Doty, a special agent with Air Force OSI at Kirtland AFB (Albuquerque). Doty claims that higher ups were willing to release special confirming UFO information for her documentary. Howe described the film offer,
"The government intended to release to me several thousand feet of color and black and white film taken between 1947 and 1964 showing crashed UFO discs and extraterrestrial bodies in historic footage to be included in the HBO documentary supported with official government confirmation."
As with Kimball and the Emenegger/Sandler team, the promised film was never released to Howe. Despite Doty,s claim that the government had authorized the release of film showing crashed saucers and alien bodies for use in the HBO documentary, it never materialized due to "political delays. When the alleged historical film footage didn,t materialized, HBO canceled the documentary.
In 1985, another offer of historic UFO footage was made to Robert Emenegger. Colonel Robert Coleman, now retired from the Air force Public Relations department, indicated the time was again right, and the government might be willing to release key confirming information confirming the extraterrestrial presence on earth. Suggestions are even made that Senator Barry Goldwater, and former President Jimmy Carter "would help obtain the release of the promised film.
One of the conditions tied to the release, however, was that prominent UFO researchers Jacques Vallee and J. Allen Hynek had to get involved in the film project. The reason for this is that a key to getting the information promised by the government is that the film had to be "professional enough and interesting enough to reopen the whole subject before the American people.
Emenegger again believed that the information is about to be released. Vallee, on the other hand, was "negative and skeptical about the offer being made. He felt that if the government wanted to release the information they could simply go to someone like the national Academy of Sciences and announce the discovery of the alien presence.
Both Vallee and Hynek feel the Air Force was again playing games and weretrying to use them to deliberately mislead the public. Between themselves they concluded that they could not support Emenegger,s plan, but "if there was any chance of uncovering genuine evidence they would pursue it "behind the scenes. Hynek and Vallee did pursue some interviews at Norton Air Force Base where two Generals assured them they could produce the UFO footage, but the two researchers weren,t buying and the deal was finally withdrawn.
In the late eighties, the government was again busy. This time they floated an offer of an interview with the keeper of the live alien that had been held at Los Alamos. The man had been a Captain in the early fifties when the alien was still alive. He was now a Colonel, near death and prepared to talk. Those presented with the offer were documentary producer Robert Emenegger, documentary producer Linda Howe, and author Bill Moore. This offer like the many before it experienced delay after delay, and a final withdrawal of the offer.
The final twist in this bizarre disclosure saga brings us back to Ward Kimball. A prominent British photographer by the name of Don Maloney reported in 1995, that in 1972 he had been in the United States and was having dinner with the head of the Disney Studios, and four of the nine original Disney animators. Ward Kimball was one of the four at the table.
While this was going on Maloney reported that he was introduced to another man, identified in one account as a "well-known Disney employee. The man offered to show Maloney some unusual film footage at his house. When Maloney saw it he described it as "old footage of UFOs, and "two beings that he was told were aliens. UFO investigator Georgina Bruni interviewed Mike Maloney about his early 1970s encounter at Disney. She described what Maloney told her about the aliens he had been shown on the film:
"One, which appeared to be dead, was laid out on a table - or slab, the other was clearly alive and moving around on the floor. He was given no information as to the source of the footage, which he was told was 'top secret,' but he was in no doubt that it was a genuine piece of old film. Mike described it as being similar to the alien autopsy footage that had been shown on television. (The Fox 'Alien Autopsy' film) At no time did he say it was the same, just similar. Of the footage he personally viewed, he said: If the film that I saw was a fake, it was a brilliant fake."
Was the "well-know employee Kimball, or was there a second "well-known Disney employee who was also a UFO buff? Was the Kimball Disney story told by Kimball in 1979, just a cover for a film that the Disney people had gotten from the government? Maloney has not yet released the name of the man who showed him the film. If it was Kimball who showed the alien film in his house, then the government now knows where that missing UFO film went.
If it wasn,t Kimball who showed Maloney the conclusive E.T. footage, then Ward Kimball, like many UFO researchers before him, had spent many decades of his life gathering strong evidence of the E.T. presence, and died before he could hear the government confirmed his suspicions.
If that is the case then welcome to the club Ward!
Grant Cameron www.presidentialufo.com
The Presidents UFO Story www.presidentialufo.com