Domee Shi and Lindsey Collins spoke with Infobae about the movie “Red”.
Next March 11 will arrive at Disney+ the movie Neta story in which mei lee, a thirteen-year-old Chinese-Canadian teenager, is torn between being her mother’s obedient daughter and the chaos of youth. And not enough with her changes in her interests, relationships and her body, every time she gets too excited or stressed, she turns into a big red panda.
A particularity to celebrate about this feature film is that it is the first time that an entire work team is led entirely by women: the director and screenwriter Domee Shithe producer Lindsay Collinsthe production designer Ron Liuthe visual effects supervisor Danielle Feinberg and the animation supervisor patty kimare part of this group that created a story with which several will feel identified.
This film was born from an idea I had Domee Shi to make the leap to feature films after winning the Oscar with the short film titled Beam. own Shi born in China and emigrated to Canada when he was barely two years old, so Net It has a strong autobiographical component. She herself confesses that the fact of having chosen a red panda was something that was clear to her from the first moment, and that part of her personal experience was decisive in giving this story a special touch.
In a chat with Domee Shi (director) and Lindsay Collins (producer), they told Infobae how they approached adolescent issues, what was the main character’s inspiration, how they built that big red panda, and even with which of the members of this film they identify.
What was it like tackling these kinds of teen issues?
Domee Shi: I was a little nervous at first, because it’s a very personal thing. Putting a lot of my own experiences on the big screen, reliving those very embarrassing moments that actually happened to me, like drawing in my secret notebook under my bed or seeing my mom stalking me at school, behind a tree… but those are the kinds of moments that really make the movie stand out and feel unique. I think we’ve all experienced them growing up. I’m sure we’ve all had embarrassing moments with our parents and with our own body changes. And yes, it was fun, but also very embarrassing at the same time.
Lindsay Collins: Everyone always says about adolescence: “I don’t like those pictures of me” or “I don’t like remembering those things”, but it’s also what creates great stories. Those are the moments we remember because they created deep memories and aroused deep emotions in us. So I think really, even though it’s a difficult time to remember, it’s actually a formative time.
What was the inspiration for the character of Mei Lee?
Domee Shi: I think she definitely has elements of myself when I was 13 years old. I was a total nerd like her and I was also like a mama’s girl. I loved being a little version of my mom, but at the same time, just like Mei, I was becoming interested in boy bands, comics, anime, manga, and entering a world that was very different from my mom’s. and my life in my house. I just wanted to celebrate strong women through their characters in the film.
What are those details that make a red panda unique?
Domee Shi: We do a lot of research at the San Francisco Zoo. and we studied real red pandas. We tried to put as much of that into the panda in the movie as possible, like when the red pandas are shaking their ears with their heads, and you see that a couple of times in the movie. It really is cute.
Mei eats a lot of junk food like red pandas eat a lot of bamboo, which is not good. Teenagers just love to eat junk food and chips, and they sleep all the time like pandas do. There are a lot of really fun little features that we took from the real red pandas and put into the movie.
Everything is seen through the eyes of a 13-year-old girl: Mei’s world is vibrant and very colorful. (Disney/Pixar)
Which character do you identify with the most?
Lindsay Collins: I identify with the mother. That happens because obviously I’m at a point in my life where I have children of my own, so I better understand their thoughts and decisions.
Domee Shi: I definitely identify with Meieven now as a grown woman. I still feel like I struggle a lot with my body and my relationship with my mom and my friends, and yeah, that’s definitely me.