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Last Updated: Thursday, 4 March, 2004, 08:52 GMT
Profile: Roy E. Disney
Roy E. Disney
Roy Disney is committed to defending the Disney name
Roy E. Disney has always been closely involved with his uncle Walt's billion dollar animation empire.

It is therefore unsurprising that he was the central figure in the bitter campaign to oust chairman Michael Eisner - under whom Disney profits have plummeted - and to "bring back the magic" to a company that he accused of being bloated and uninspiring.

Mr Disney, who had been on the board of Disney, resigned in anger last year and set up his own website, SaveDisney.com, to fight the company management.

Born on 10 January, 1930 in Los Angeles, Mr Disney spent much of his privileged childhood among the cartoonists who sketched scenes for Pinocchio and Fantasia and says he was the model for Goofy.

He studied English at Harvard School and Pomona College, and after graduating in 1951 took a job as a film editor on a television series.

A few months later, he joined Walt Disney as an assistant film editor, and went on to produce and direct nature films for nearly 20 years.

He also worked for nearly a decade on Fantasia 2000, cartoons set to classical music that won critical acclaim but did not do well at the box office.

Castles and yachts

He is now an investor. He and his family currently hold about $700m in Disney's stock and are said to be worth more than a billion dollars.

They own a California-based investment company Shamrock Holdings which has stakes in radio stations, property, and technology companies.

Mr Disney married Patricia Ann Dailey in 1955 with whom he has four children; they have at least 13 grandchildren.

In his spare time he likes racing yachts. He also a owns a castle in Ireland, as well as a Boeing 737 jet to fly him there.

Described among other things as self-effacing and shy, he is nonetheless passionate about defending the Disney name, as recent events have shown.

Ironically, he also the man who promoted Mr Eisner's appointment to the top job at Disney in 1984.

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