Is Disney the Nicest Place on Earth? A Content Analysis of Prosocial Behavior in Animated Disney Films


Corresponding author: Laura Padilla-Walker; e-mail:


The purpose of this study was to examine the multidimensionality of prosocial behavior in Disney animated films. Characteristics of the target and initiator and context of each prosocial act were also examined. Prosocial behavior was portrayed at a rate of approximately 1 act per minute, rarely occurred in combination with aggression, targets were most prosocial toward friends, and tended to help those similar to themselves. This study views Disney in a more positive light than past studies by highlighting high levels of prosocial behavior, as well as portrayal that may facilitate imitation. This study also used a broad definition of prosocial behavior that provides a more nuanced picture of the nature of prosocial behavior in children's programming.