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Next month, hundreds of thousands of children will be cramming into Britain’s cinemas to see The Black Cauldron, the new (and twenty fifth) animated feature film from Walt Disney Productions. In America, Disneyland is celebrating its 30th anniversary and preparing to welcome its 250 millionth visitor. Although Walt Disney died nineteen years ago, in December 1966, there is a sense in which he lives on - like the Once and Future King of legend who, deathless, sleeps in Avalon. Every minute of every day, somewhere in the world, Disney films are being screened, Disney records are being played, Disney books are being read and Disney toys are being cuddled. The Disney autograph, with its familiar circle over the letter ‘i’, is probably the best-known signature in the world; and, it has been claimed, the three most internationally recognized symbols are the Coca-Cola bottle, the swastika and the ever-smiling face of Mickey Mouse. […]