With the world of film and entertainment slowly moving to a more inclusive and diverse model; there has been much discussion around when animation, particularly children's animation, would follow suit. It's no secret that the characters and storylines presented in these films can have a significant impact on children in their formative years. Setting a precedent for how they treat others; and in turn, how others treat them. After what feels like too many years in the making; Pixar Animation Studios is taking the first step, announcing that it is casting its first-ever transgender character.
As one of the biggest players in the animation game, this is a big move for Pixar but also for the industry in general. The news was shared by San Francisco-based transgender movement Trans March on Twitter; who confirmed that the casting call was real. After sharing the original flyer, Trans March followed-up by tweeting, "... we should have been more specific with how we know this is real. We talked to the casting director and they sent us this flyer. They're reaching out to other orgs as well, but we got the sense we're the first to post about it."
We have confirmed this is legit, so share away! pic.twitter.com/oKLFzyjXIL
— Trans March (@transmarch) April 20, 2021
As for the type of voice Pixar is looking to cast for its first transgender character; “Pixar is casting a youth voice-over role for an upcoming animated project. The character, Jess, is a 14-year-old transgender girl. She’s compassionate, funny, and always has your back. We’re looking for actresses 12 to 17 years old.” In addition, the document also listed some further requirements around personality; stating that the role is for someone who is "enthusiastic, outgoing, funny and energetic,” and feels "comfortable acting in front of a microphone.”
With the news being so fresh, Pixar is yet to confirm which film the casting is for; but that hasn't put a stop to circling speculation. So far, the general consensus is that Pixar is casting its first transgender character for a role in Turning Red; a film slated for 2022.