‘Destino’ the Film

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Wednesday, 2018, June 20

‘Destino’ was a short seven minute film released in 2003, produced to great acclaim, by the Walt Disney Company.

It was born out of a project started in 1945 and finally completed almost 60 years later.

At the end of the 1930s, Dalí left Europe for the United States; exiled from the Surrealist Group by André Breton, and he started a new chapter in his life with Gala.  He met Mr Walt Disney in 1945. The meeting was held at a diner, the movie producer told Dalí about a short animated movie that he meant to call ‘Destino’, depicting the tragic destiny of Chronos, the Greek god of Time, despe­rately in love with a mortal, with a Mexican musical background all animated, with no voices.

For the next eight months, every day from 8:30am, Dalí worked non-stop until nightfall in the Disney Studios with John Hench, chief drawing artist and script-writer with Disney. Dalí drew hundreds of sketches and drafts… alas they were never used: the economic crisis in the US after the war put an end to the project.

It wasn’t until 1999 that the project was brought back to light by Walt Disney’s nephew, Roy Edward Disney. From the original storyboards, personal notes and drawings, and with the help of John Hench himself, a team of 25 motion-design artists, directed by French director Dominique Monféry he finally finishes the animated short film in 2003 under the name Destino. They worked on deciphering the old storyboards that had been originally created by Hench and Dalì. The end result is a short film with no dialogue but with a musical score.

Destiny was awarded a prize in 2003 at the International Film Festival in Annecy, France.  In 2004 it received an Oscar nomination, for best animated short film; and still today, 30 years after Dalí ’s death, it continues to resonate with audiences. It is a film that unifies Dalí ’s surrealism and  Disney’s unmistakable ‘style’.