Bob Thomas: [Are you a] local boy? L.A.?

Marty Sklar: I grew up in Long Beach. I was originally from New Jersey and we moved out here when I was twelve. My dad was a teacher in Long Beach and the L.A. schools. I went to high school in Long Beach and then got a very, very small scholarship from the alumni association at UCLA. It influenced my career greatly because Johnny Jackson was the head of the alumni association at that time, and later he left to go to work for Disney, to head up Publications as I remember.

BT: Right.

MS: It happened at a time when Walt was looking for somebody to do a tabloid newspaper, 1890 style, for Disneyland’s opening and Johnny apparently called Card [Walker] and Jimmy Johnson, who used to be the head of the music group. They called me—this was the end of my junior year at UCLA—and asked me to come in for an interview. I had no idea what it was about. I came into Card’s office and he said, “We’re looking for somebody to do this, are you interested?” I was looking for a summer job after my junior year and so I went to work at Disneyland a month before it opened. Two weeks after I went to work, I had to present a concept for this tabloid newspaper to Walt. He liked it, and I’m still here. [Laughs]


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