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Film and TV

Disney hints future Pixar movies could include non-binary representation and characters ‘of all genders’

Lily Wakefield November 17, 2020
Inside Out

Pixar's Inside Out starred anthropomorphised emotions and an imaginary elephant – and yet the studio has never created an explicitly non-binary character. (Disney Pixar)

Pixar has hinted that future films will include “all genders”, prompting excited speculation that an animated non-binary character could be on their way.

Disney has seen baby steps of progress when it comes to LGBT+ representation over the past few years, with Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker featuring a minor same-sex kiss, and Pixar film Onward and Marvel film Avengers: Endgame both briefly alluding to same-sex relationships.

The studio only revealed its first openly gay central character earlier this year in the heartwarming Disney Pixar short Out, that follows a queer man as he tries to work up the courage to open up to his parents when they come to visit.

While Out received a fair amount anti-LGBT+ backlash, it seems Pixar could be ignoring the homophobes and moving on to non-binary representation.

The new documentary series Inside Pixar recently premiered on the streaming platform Disney Plus, and one episode focuses on Jessica Heidt, a veteran script supervisor who is working to tackle gender disparity in the studio’s new scripts.

While Heidt has so far concentrated on creating a more equal balance between male and female characters and their dialogue, and has even helped to develop a programme to track representation in scripts, she hinted in the documentary series that her work may soon expand.

Early in the episode, she acknowledged the struggle for non-binary representation in the media, and later on specifically said that that upcoming films from Pixar would feature “characters of all genders”.

As most animated films take years to develop it may be a while before an animated non-binary character shows up, but fans were thrilled nonetheless.

One Twitter user wrote: “Watching the inside Pixar docuseries and fully bursting into tears as someone acknowledges non-binary people.”

“Episode four of Inside Pixar on Disney+ says future Pixar movies will have characters of ‘all genders’,” said another. “Non-binary Pixar characters when?”

More: Disney, Inside Pixar, Jessica Heidt, non-binary

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