Disneyland is the happiest place on Earth, and for many, working at Disneyland would be a dream job. Unfortunately, what it's really like to work at Disneyland might actually be very different from what people like to think.
Disney employees around the globe -- there are about 195,000 of them -- have shared some of their dark Disney secrets and worst moments they have had on the job. There have been scandals, much alleged mistreatment, and even the tragedy of a small boy and an alligator.
It seems working for the mouse isn't all it's cracked up to be. These stories show a side of the parks that the public was definitely never supposed to see.
2017's Least Popular Man In Hollywood Once Worked For Disney
Harvey Weinstein was the name on everyone's lips in 2017 when his guilt in numerous sexual intimidation and coercion scandals came to light. Many of the allegations reached back several years, inevitably calling attention to the time that he and his brother, Bob Weinstein, spent working for Disney Studios. Michael D. Eisner, who ran the studio back in 2005 when the brothers made their exit, said that Harvey was "an incorrigible bully."
A Disneyland Paris Employee Attempted Self-Immolation During A Work Meeting
In 2013, an employee at Disneyland Paris doused himself with gasoline during a meeting with his bosses and pulled out a lighter – fortunately, a coworker was able to restrain him and prevent the tragedy. Two employees had already passed by their own hands at the resort within several years of the incident.
A 2-Year-Old Boy Lost His Life After Disney Ignored Employees' Complaints About Alligators
In 2016, 2-year-old Lane Graves was fatally snatched by an alligator at Walt Disney World's Grand Floridian Resort and Spa. He was wading in the shallow water of the resort's lagoon when he was grabbed and pulled underwater. His father jumped in after him and wrestled the alligator, but was unable to save his son.
According to staff, guests staying along the water had been feeding the alligators from their bungalows for around 14 months. The resort's staff claimed that Disney managers had consistently ignored their complaints about the reptiles.
There Were Two Staff Suicides In 2010 At Disneyland Paris
After the working conditions at Disneyland Paris took a dramatic downturn in 2010, two workers enacted their own ends. One was 37-year-old father of four Franck L., who wrote, "Je ne veux pas retourner chez Mickey," on the wall of his home, which translates to, "I don't want to work for Mickey any more." Five weeks earlier, another employee of the park jumped in front of a train.
Union member Herve Saumade says that, although most employees love what their jobs represent, "In the last few years, there has been a new management approach, which has, in many cases, made our working lives intolerable."