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Chris Connelly on Walt Disney’s magic and ‘Disney 100: A Century of Dreams’

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A century’s worth of magic will be celebrated Thursday during the documentary event Disney 100: A Century of Dreams – A Special Edition of 20/20, airing at 9 p.m. ET on ABC, then streaming on Hulu the next day.

The documentary will take viewers through the journey of the Walt Disney Company and covers everything from its animated films to its theme parks.

Journalist Chris Connelly is featured in the special, which he says covers all of the amazing stories the company has told since its inception in 1923.

“From Snow White and Mickey Mouse to Mary Poppins to Marvel movies,” Connelly said. “It’s all in there with stuff you’ve never seen before, interviews with the actors and the creators, people who sang the songs and who wrote the songs.”

Connelly says he found the stories about Walt Disney to be the most moving part of the documentary special, particularly the story of how he created Mickey Mouse after a different character was stolen from him.

“The first one he created, Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, was taken away from him. The distributor ran off with him,” Connelly said.

He compares the situation to one regarding a certain pop star and her masters.

“And so, like Taylor Swift rerecording her songs, in Disney’s case he created a new character,” Connelly said. “You see the very first drawings of Mickey Mouse in our special tonight. The first time that Mickey Mouse ever took life on a piece of paper. You see those drawings and you find out how successful he was as an animated character.”

Disney is the parent company of ABC News.

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