The latest film from beloved animation studio Pixar arrives on Disney Plus this week, telling the story of a tweenager who finds herself developing a strange new quirk at the onset of puberty: she regularly turns into a giant red panda against her will.


Much of the conflict in Turning Red stems from disagreements between protagonist Mei and her mother Ming, and according to star Rosalie Chiang, this feeds into one of Pixar's biggest strengths – its ability to tell compelling stories that don't feature out and out villains.

Speaking exclusively to about that conflict, Chiang said, "I mean, when I was younger, I was kind of like [about my parents] 'Oh, why are they doing this? Why? Why are they acting like this?' I don't understand.'

"But I think it's important to always empathise with the other person, the other side. And I think Pixar movies has this incredible talent at telling stories without villains. There's no villain in the story. And because there is no villains between parent and child, it's just complicated, different opinions, they clash, it's inevitable."

Speaking further about how easily she was able to identify with her character, Chiang continued: "I mean, I was between 12 and 16 when I was recording for Mei, the same age as Mei.

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"And, she's a really... she fights for what she believes in. And that's something I really value, I can't back down without a fight. It's a blessing and a curse. But her going through these big changes is very similar to what I went through between 12 and 16."

And Killing Eve star Sandra Oh, who plays Ming, added: "I think anyone who's going to look back on their parents from the perspective of a 13 year old, it's gonna be very, very difficult to find how they were very likeable.

"But I'd say the quickest way to it was not only trying to find Ming's authenticity, in her lines, in her care for or hyper-vigilance for her daughter, but humour. And I feel very comfortable with humour, and I feel like that is always the best opening to keep an audience with you."

Turning Red will be released on Disney Plus on 11th March 2022. Sign up to Disney+ for £7.99 a month or £79.90 a year

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