Glen Keane was born in Abington, Pennsylvania on April 13, 1954 to Bill Keane and Thelma Keane. He is the middle of five children. At age five, Keane and his family moved to Paradise Valley, Arizona, where he was raised.
Keane developed an interest in art as a child while observing his father’s cartooning work. His interest in art held throughout his high school years, driving his decision in choosing a college art career over a football scholarship. After high school, Keane submitted his portfolio to the California Institute of the Arts and was accepted into the School of Film Graphics by mistake. In order to attend the institute, Keane stayed in Film Graphics; he eventually thrived in it.
During Keane’s time at the California Institute of the Arts, Disney artists such as Frank Thomas and Ollie Johnston, two of Disney’s senior Nine Old Men, visited the institute. Inspired by the visiting artists work, Keane made the decision to apply to Walt Disney Studios. His portfolio was reviewed by another of Disney’s Nine Old Men, Eric Larson. In September of 1974, after receiving some helpful pointers and turning in another portfolio, Keane was accepted into the program. He continued his mentorship with Larson and trained with other Disney artists. Around that time, in August of 1975, Keane married Linda Hesselroth.
- Penny and Bernard - The Rescuers (1977) (assistant animator)
- Elliott the Dragon - Pete's Dragon (1977) (assistant animator)
- Bear - The Fox and the Hound (1981)
- Willie the Giant - Mickey's Christmas Carol (1983)
- Eilonwy and Gurgi - The Black Cauldron (1985)
- Ratigan, Fidget - The Great Mouse Detective (1986)
- Fagin, Sykes , Jenny and Georgette - Oliver & Company (1988)
- Ariel - The Little Mermaid (1989), Mickey's PhilharMagic (2003)
- Marahute and Cody - The Rescuers Down Under (1990)
- Beast - Beauty and the Beast (1991)
- Aladdin - Aladdin (1992)
- Pocahontas - Pocahontas (1995)
- Tarzan - Tarzan (1999)
- John Silver - Treasure Planet (2002)
- Rapunzel - Tangled (2010) (director; executive producer)
- The Characters - Paperman (2012 )