Pixar to feature its first Sikh character in ‘Turning Red’

Turning Red

Pixar is showcasing its first Sikh character in “Turning Red,” an upcoming feature film by Oscar-winning director Domee Shi.

A historic movie: Set for release on March 11, 2022, “Turning Red” will mark a few firsts for Pixar, which dropped the movie’s first teaser trailer last week.

  • The studio’s first Sikh character is a school security guard, who appears in the trailer wearing a uniform and a navy-colored turban. He is also seen donning a “kada” (or “kara”), a religious bangle that symbolizes infinity, strength and humility.
  • “Turning Red” is the studio’s first feature film directed by a woman of color. Shi, who won the Academy Award for best animated short film for “Bao” in 2019, is Chinese Canadian.
  • The new movie is also Shi’s first-ever feature film. She has, however, contributed to other Pixar creations, including “Inside Out,” “Incredibles 2” and “Toy Story 4.”

Reactions: Sikh community members and social media users are lauding Pixar for its attention to representation and cultural diversity.

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  • The New York City-based Sikh Coalition, a national organization, acknowledged the news using the hashtag #RepresentationMatters.
  • BuzzFeed writer Simrin Singh wrote: “Growing up, I never could have imagined seeing an observant Sikh in a Pixar movie. It’s so exciting to think of all the little Sikh kids who get to see this Sardar on screen and feel included. More of this, please!”
  • Others shared the same sentiment. “First time I’ve seen Sikhs being represented in a Pixar movie and I can’t tell you how happy I am right now,” one user wrote.

Check out more reactions below:

Featured Image via Pixar

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