Beginning with the early musical short features he created, such as his "Silly Symphonies," Walt Disney began a tradition of publishing printed music for all the songs his musical films made popular. His firm eventually formed its own publishing house and then even its own record company to continue this practice. Disney's sheet music was typically simple to learn and play, which made it more appealing to his generally young audiences.
After bringing his firm out of near-bankruptcy with the 1950 feature film "Cinderella," Walt Disney followed with several other animated features. Though his 1952 "Alice in Wonderland" was generally panned by critics, "Peter Pan," in 1953, won praise. The film was based on J.M. Barrie's much-loved story "Peter Pan, or The Boy Who Wouldn't Grow Up," which had been popular as several versions of a play since 1904, and as a novel since 1911. This was the first film Disney distributed through his own distribution firm, Buena Vista Distribution.