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1/6/2022 • 4 min read
When you’ve got a good thing going, it’s best to get as much out of it as you can. Thus, this summer, everyone’s favorite yellow, bespectacled, denim-clad goons return for a new feature-length caper set in the DESPICABLE ME universe. 2015’s MINIONS was a spin-off of and prequel to the DESPICABLE ME films, depicting the origins of supervillain Felonious Gru’s henchman, the Minions. Now MINIONS: THE RISE OF GRU will reveal just how those lovable little lumps became acquainted with the famous evil mastermind.
As we all wait with bated breath for this fifth installment in the DESPICABLE ME franchise – which includes the first three DESPICABLE ME films and the first MINIONS prequel – here’s everything you need to know about MINIONS: THE RISE OF GRU.
MINIONS: THE RISE OF GRU is set for a theatrical release on July 1.
Following the trailers that were released back in February 2020 and December 2021, the latest trailer gives us more of a peek into Gru's youthful ambitions and his early antics with the Minions by his side.
The plot of MINIONS: THE RISE OF GRU takes place during the 1970s, as a young Felonious Gru is coming of age in the suburbs. As a zealous fan of a supervillain team called the Vicious 6, Gru decides that he will become evil enough to be inducted into the group with open arms.
In the process of this personal evolution, Gru receives assistance from a hoard of trouble-makers known as the Minions. With the help of Kevin, Bob, Otto, and Stuart, Gru is able to build his own lair and create the weapons necessary to hopefully achieve his wildest, most villainous dreams. But when Gru’s interview to become leader of the Vicious 6 goes off the rails, chaos, unsurprisingly, ensues.
Fans of DESPICABLE ME and all related DESPICABLE ME entertainment will be delighted to know that Steve Carrell will be reprising his role as Gru, and co-director of the first four DESPICABLE ME franchise films Pierre Coffin will be returning the voice of all the Minions.
But there are many more famous voices expected for this newest MINIONS film: Taraji P. Henson ("Empire") will be appearing as the leader of the Vicious 6, Belle Bottom, flanked by other members of her gang voiced by Dolph Lundgren, Lucy Lawless, Jean-Claude Van Damme, Danny Trejo, and Alan Arkin. Russell Brand will also be appearing as Dr. Nefario, who eventually becomes Gru’s assistant, Julie Andrews will be voicing Gru’s mother, and Michelle Yeoh will be portraying a character named Master Chow – an acupuncturist who is skilled at Kung-Fu.
As Pierre Coffin did not return to co-direct the newest MINIONS entry, that role was, instead, filled by Kyle Balda. Balda has an established repertoire in the animation industry, with credits including THE LORAX, MONSTERS, INC., A BUG’S LIFE, JUMANJI, TOY STORY 2, and the first DESPICABLE ME film. This is on top of having already co-directed DESPICABLE ME 3 alongside Coffin.
Writer Brian Lynch is also no stranger to animated films nor the DESPICABLE ME franchise. Not only did he write the first MINIONS film, but he wrote or co-wrote Illumination Entertainment’s HOP, THE SECRET LIFE OF PETS, and THE SECRET LIFE OF PETS 2, as well as receiving a story credit for 2011’s SHREK spin-off, PUSS IN BOOTS.
All images courtesy of Illumination Entertainment and Universal Pictures.
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