Pixar Taps Amy Poehler and Mindy Kaling For Animated Movie—Without Any Princesses

Kristen Bousquet

pixar inside out

When it comes to animated movies, most females are portrayed as princesses who live in a castle and, for one reason or another, are having a tough life. Viewers will be taken through vast amounts of melodrama only to find that the princess will live happily ever after—usually with a prince of some sort—the end. That’s going to change soon, as Pixar’s newest movie, “Inside Out,” will feature plenty of females—but no princesses.

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Pixar has casted a strong—and hilarious—cast of stars who will portray the various emotions inside an adolescent girl named Riley’s mind. There will be Joy (voiced by Amy Poelher, the film’s real protagonist), Fear (voiced by Bill Hader), Disgust (voiced by Mindy Kaling), Anger (voiced by Lewis Black) and Sadness (voiced by Phyllis Smith).

As Vulture pointed out, we’ll see how each emotion works together to keep Riley balanced, and for the first 11 years of her life, the primary influencer is Joy, as evidenced by Riley’s sunny demeanor. However, as adolescence sets in, Joy finds her lead role usurped, and we see how other emotions creep in as Riley transforms into a moody pre-teen. 

The movie appears to be the result of an article NPR writer Linda Holmes wrote in 2009, which asked Pixar to “please make a movie about a girl who is not a princess.” Up until the 2012 release of “Brave,” a film featuring a princess named Merida, the production company had only released male-centered flicks like “Toy Story,” “Cars,” and “Monster’s Inc.” The release of “Inside Out” will mark Pixar’s first movie about an everyday girl with real thoughts and feeling—and who’s decidedly un-royal.

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Here’s hoping that the flick will help young girls see that the emotions they have are varied and normal, and that they’ll also get some laughs out if (judging by the cast—they’ll get laugh out of it as well. Riley will go through being that little teenage annoyance that we all were at one point to a hormonal mess, and then matures into a totally regular person.