Entertainment

People Who Worked On ‘Toy Story 4’ Hinted At Bonnie’s Dad Being Latino

Toy Story 4, the long-awaited fourth film of the Toy Story franchise, hit theaters this June and we were reunited with favorites like Woody and Buzz Lightyear. We also became acquainted with a few new faces, while coming to the realization that an animated movie can still make us ugly cry.

Between meeting Forky, Gabby Gabby, Ducky and Bunny, and Duke Caboom (hey, Keanu!), Toy Story 4 introduced us to a plethora of new characters. We even met Bo Peep again, whom you might remember has been MIA for a bit. And she comes back in this fourth installment as a whole new badass Bo Peep!

There was one character in particular who stood out among the rest: Bonnie’s dad.

Credit: Toy Story 4 / Disney-Pixar

If you recall, Bonnie is the toddler in Toy Story 3 who Andy gives away all his toys to, including his beloved Woody, before he heads off to college.

With his dark hair and caramel-like complexion, Bonnie’s dad clearly looked ethnically ambiguous. We wondered what he could be and thus it raised the question, could Bonnie’s dad be Latino? He reminded us of some of our dads, tios, primos, and friends. Even when we first saw Bonnie Anderson in Toy Story 3, we knew there was something different about her. She also had ambiguous features and didn’t quite look like the standard white character we were so used to seeing in Toy Story‘s past — or many cartoon films for that matter. But at that time, we had only seen her mom.

Bonnie’s dad is actually voiced by Mexican-American actor Jay Hernandez — who revealed in several interviews discussing Toy Story 4 that he has always been a fan of the franchise and dreamed of one day voicing a character for a Disney-Pixar movie — so if we needed any clues this one is certainly it. While on the red carpet of the Toy Story 4 world premiere, Hernandez revealed that the film’s creative team even began adding touches to Bonnie’s dad that were true to him. “I went to the session wearing Converse Chuck Taylors… certain kinds of shoes, and they added that to my character, which wasn’t originally there,” the Magnum P.I. actor said. “So I thought it was sort of an homage to me, it was cool.”

In a recent interview with Remezcla, Pixar producer Jonas Rivera, who also happens to be Mexican-American, noted that our assumptions about Bonnie’s dad possibly being Latino could indeed be right.

Credit: @jayhernandez001 / Twitter

“We never named him; he’s just Bonnie’s Dad. But in my mind, and since I know him well I feel I can speak for Albert [Lozano], the character is a reflection of our families. Albert’s dad is Mexican American like my dad is. That’s how we see dads,” Rivera said. He noted that growing up in a home with a Mexican father and mother of English Canadian descent also inspired the design of Bonnie’s parents. “We thought Bonnie’s dad would be closer to that model of a family. I know a lot of families that way in California,” he explained.

“When we made Toy Story 3, all my family thought she was based on my sister Raquel because she looked liked her when she was really little, and now in [Toy Story 4], Bonnie sort of looks like my niece Carly.”

The question then remains, was the casting of Jay Hernandez to voice the character of Bonnie’s dad therefore intentional? 

Maybe not quite, but Rivera explained that Jay just embodied what they were searching for in Bonnie’s dad perfectly.

“As a parent of three, the character is easy to relate to. He is the dad that’s always a little behind everything, and Jay was able to bring that in a truthful way,” Rivera told Remezcla. “To be totally honest with you, it wasn’t like, ‘Let’s find a Latino actor;’ it was more like, ‘Let’s find the right guy,’ but when I saw who it was with [director] Josh Cooley and [producer] Mark Nielsen, that was a bonus for me. I thought it’d be great if we could also have more diversity.”

He continued, “We make animated films about toys, monsters, and superheroes, but really we want them to be relatable to everybody and one of the ways you do that is if your films are diverse, not only the characters in the films but the people making them.”

Fans are loving the diversity the movie is bringing to the Toy Story universe.

Credit: Toy Story 4 / Disney-Pixar

The film did relatively well on having more diversity in its lineup of actors, adding the voices of those like Hernandez, Jordan Peele, Keegan-Michael Key, and Ally Maki. Toy Story 4 also showcased a lesbian couple dropping off and picking up their daughter from daycare. And the lost little girl we see at the carnival, who Gabby Gabby tries to console and ultimately winds up being able to claim as her own kid, is Black.

Toy Story 4 picks up right where Toy Story 3 left off, but not before momentarily taking us back in time to tell fans what happened to Bo Peep and her sheep. The Disney-Pixar picture dives deeper into Bonnie’s world as she heads off for Kindergarten orientation and shows us once again just how far Woody will go for his kid. Woody, Forky, Buzz and the rest of the gang wind up on an epic adventure after Bonnie’s dad declares they’re going on an end-of-summer road trip.

The family’s road trip places Woody on an unexpected journey through an antique store, with little Forky (who becomes almost like Woody’s child) in tow. And even Bonnie’s dad runs into some serious bumps along the way to their destination. Oh, and if you were still doubting that he could be Latino, just wait to see his reactions to a lot of the challenges he faces.

READ: If You Remember The Homies Toys, Their Story Is Even Better

Elena Of Avalor Is Going To Be The Queen And We Love To See The Glow Up

Culture

Elena Of Avalor Is Going To Be The Queen And We Love To See The Glow Up

Matt Stroshane / Getty Images

“Elena of Avalor” is coming to an end. The show offered people the first Latina Disney princess and that kind of representation is so vital and so important. Three seasons later, the show is coming to an end and the final show is going to change everything.

“Elena of Avalor” changed representation in Disney and it was a long time coming.

Elena gave Disney fans their first Latina Disney princess. For years, Disney was facing pressure to start to include more characters of color. “The Princess and The Frog” was Disney’s first answer to that call and “Elena of Avalor” came after. Finally seeing someone who represented Latinos was a reality.

The final season is going to be the longest so that Elena could get the finale she deserves.

“It has been a tremendous honor for me to bring Disney’s first Latina princess to the screen,” Gerber told The Hollywood Reporter. “Everyone involved with Elena of Avalor, from the creative team to the unbelievable cast and crew, felt the responsibility to get this right. We created the character of Elena with the hope that she would be a role model, not just for young Latina girls watching, but for all children to be able to see what a true leader looks like.”

This show was so impactful, far beyond just the children that watched it.

“From the beginning, Elena’s story arc has been that she would one day become queen,” Gerber told The Hollywood Reporter. “With the series finale, the creative team has been able to bring Elena’s story to the thrilling conclusion that we always envisioned. I can’t wait for viewers to see the final chapter in Elena’s epic adventure.”

Elena’s legacy within the Latino community is going to last forever, that’s for sure.

From all of the “Elena of Avalor” fans, thank you. This show gave us a chance to see our cultures reflected and celebrated with the Disney magic behind it. What a special moment in entertainment this is.

READ: ‘Elena Of Avalor’s’ Big Secret Will Finally Be Revealed In This Flick

Naya Rivera’s Co-Star Lauren Potter And Others Are Paying Heartbreaking Tributes To Her

Entertainment

Naya Rivera’s Co-Star Lauren Potter And Others Are Paying Heartbreaking Tributes To Her

FOX

After days of searching, actress Naya Rivera’s body was recovered at Lake Piru in Ventura County, CA. Her life ended saving her own 4-year-old son Josey during a boating trip that went awry on July 8. But before her tragic end, Rivera was an actress and singer who won awards for her breakout role as Santana Rivera on the FOX series “Glee” and used her platform to support the LGBTQ community.

In response to her death, co-stars, fans, and admirers are celebrating her life and highlighting her work.

Check out some of the touching tributes below.

Naya’s co-star Lauren Potter paid tribute to the late actress with a throwback photo.

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Cheerios Forever

A post shared by Lauren Potter (@thelaurenpotter) on

Like her co-star Rivera, Lauren Potter became a breakout star thanks to her role on the FOX series “Glee.” Known for her part as Becky Jackson on the series, Potter paid tribute to Potter with a photo and a heartbreaking caption that read “Cheerios Forever.”

Rivera’s “Glee” co-star Chris Colfer honored her in an Instagram post writing that “being close to her was both a badge of honor and a suit of armor.”

Speaking of Rivera, Colfer wrote “How can you convey all your love and respect for someone in one post? How can you summarize a decade of friendship and laughter with words alone? If you were friends with Naya Rivera, you simply can’t. Her brilliance and humor were unmatched.”

Glee turned Dreamgirls actress Amber Riley also paid tribute.

Riley, one of the only Black actresses besides Rivera in the early seasons of the show described Rivera as her favorite duet partner. “I love you. I miss you. I don’t have words right now, just lots of feelings. Rest In Peace Angel, and know that your family will never have to worry about anything,” she wrote.”

Heather Morris, Rivera’s love interest in Glee explained that she was taking some time to grieve.

Morris had been one of the people to join in the search for Rivera.

Reality star Nene Leakes promised to hold memories of Rivera “close to my heart.”

Actress Gwyneth Paltrow also contributed to the comments with a video of her and Naya singing “Landslide” while on Glee.

“Remembering beautiful @nayarivera today,” Paltrow commented. “Getting to sing in this trio with her was such a special moment. I am in utter shock and disbelief that someone so full of life and passion and talent is no longer with us. And completely heartbroken for her family.”