Disney Animal Characters We Would Love to See
Disney has no shortage of animal characters, but half of them are sidekicks. There are exceptions, of course. Bolt, Nemo, Bambi and Mickey are great, but Disney is missing a category of potential stars: the animals we love because of how weird they are. Dogs are great, but a dog movie is not a novel concept in the slightest.
What are you waiting for, Disney? Let's get weird. These oddball animal cartoon characters would be an instant hit. If Disney keeps dropping the ball, we might have to make one of these movies ourselves.
Bobby, the Blobfish
If you've never seen a blobfish, here. Now you have, and now you get why it's called a blobfish. This fish looks more like a container of slime left out on the sidewalk than a functional sea creature, but they somehow make it work. Yes, this weird, gooey, Play-Doh-looking thing has passed the trials and tribulations of evolutionary biology.
There are so many routes Disney could take with this. Maybe Blobby Bobby is self-conscious about his appearance and faces his fears in an underwater beauty pageant. Maybe he gets stuck to the bottom of a tourist's flipflop and ends up traveling to New York City. We don't really care. We just want to see a pile of goo with a face become a star.
Elle, the Axolotl
Next up, axolotls. They're pink. They look like they're smiling at all times. They're already cartoon characters, so Disney doesn't have to do any of the heavy lifting. Just skip straight to the live-action version, honestly.
The axolotl's baby face probably means the rest of the animal kingdom doesn't take it seriously, so what about an axolotl remake of "Legally Blonde?" She's pink. She goes to Harvard. She's amazing at staying hydrated because she'll die if she leaves her aquarium. When the opposition cracks the glass, does it stop her? Of course not. She delivers her closing argument from a 7-Eleven to-go cup.
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Portal, the Pangolin
Pangolins have gotten the short end of the stick for a while. They're prized for their unusual, armored scales, so they're hunted mercilessly. It's tragic, really, because pangolins are like the heavy-metal version of anteaters. It's pretty much a shy but sweet pinecone with legs.
What if a pangolin and an anteater fell in love, much to their families' disapproval? Obviously, the two species would have to set aside their differences to take down poachers invading their habitat. Cue the begrudging acceptance from both sets of parents and the heartwarming end-credit montage of cute, pangolin-anteater babies.
Pat, the Pufferfish
Pufferfish appear in "Spongebob" and "Finding Nemo," but we need more inflatable fish representation here. What about a pufferfish who can't seem to deflate? We're bloated enough to relate.
Or maybe a young puffer who gets teased for blowing up whenever he gets nervous? Maybe he'll have to go to court-mandated anger management after he keeps unintentionally stabbing his coworkers. Whichever way you spin it, it wouldn't be hard to turn a round balloon of an animal into a winning cartoon.
Sahara, the Sand Cat
Aside from "Rango," there aren't too many cartoons set in the desert. And let's be real: The "Rango" characters weren't cute enough to fall for, and Disney can do so much better.
Sand cats are way cuter than reptiles. Why not tell a tale of a sand cat who's obsessed with snow? Her entire life mission is to visit Antarctica. Her family thinks she's nuts, but will that stop her? Judging by literally every Disney princess' refusal to listen to parental logic, it will not.
Ollie, the Sea Otter
Sea otters are just plain cute, and their snuggly habits make them highly relatable. They need a community to thrive, just like we do. Picture this: An overworked fisherman is never home to see his family. He misses the quintessential school play, complete with a closeup of his adorable kindergartener's sad face scanning the audience in hopes that he will finally show up. He doesn't. He considers it but sees the stack of bills on the table and heads to the dock instead. After a run-in with a particularly mischievous sea-otter family, he steps on a magical sea urchin, trips over a line and falls.
When he comes to, he's a sea otter! As he tries to figure out how to turn back, he's forced to adapt to the sea otter's way of life, including holding hands when they sleep to avoid drifting apart. When he gets his land legs back, he holds his daughter's hand on the way to every single school play.
Fiona, the Arctic Fox
Come on. Look at it. Arctic foxes are unbelievably cute. They're like a cross between a playful kitten and a Samoyed, and 80 percent of their bodies are fluff. This is a recipe for a Disney holiday season release if we've ever seen one.
Maybe the fox was born in captivity and hitches a ride to the North Pole with Santa, where she realizes snow is much colder than she anticipated. She ends up staying inside as Mrs. Claus' pet until the reindeer catch a bug, and someone has to help deliver presents. Will she rise to take her place as the magical animal of the north that she really is?
Fennel, the Fennec Fox
The tagline for this animal cartoon practically writes itself: "He's all ears." Fennec foxes have ears that can be up to 6 inches long, which is bigger than their entire heads. They look made up, but these very-real foxes deserve to star in their own film for sure.
Perhaps Fennel the Fennec fox enters an international fox competition. The other species of fox laugh at him because he's so small, but his supercharged sense of hearing saves the day when a pride of jackals crashes the event.
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Aella, the Chinchilla
Chinchillas have gone viral on social media because, well, look at them. They're like rounder bunny rabbits with softer fur, bigger eyes, longer whiskers, a fluffy tail and tiny hands that hold whatever you hand them. They adore taking dust baths, and their mannerisms are an animator's dream. What if chinchillas don't actually like being paraded around on camera, posing in front of a ring light holding miniature food?
This Disney movie would be about a chinchilla who wants more. Forget cute and cuddly. This chinchilla is done being chill. She escapes from her TikTok influencer's grasp while on vacation in Chile and reunites with her chinchilla family in their native habitat.
Fluffy, the Hedgehog
A hedgehog named Fluffy. Need we say more? Poor Fluffy's love language is physical affection, but no one will hug him because they're afraid of his quills. He does his best to find a solution, but his friends end up full of spines and ready to throw in the towel.
Will he ever find a way to love his quills the way they are? Will he ever get the bear hug he longs for? You'll just have to wait until Disney gets it together and takes a cue from the "Sonic the Hedgehog" franchise, turning this unusual animal into a blockbuster hit.
Farrah, the Ferret
Ferrets have boundless energy and quirky personalities that are undeniably amusing. They operate in two modes: bouncing off the walls or sound asleep. People have panicked because their pet is so deeply asleep that they look deceased. We can totally picture a ferret in an animated short film.
A pet ferret is left behind when his owner passes away. The owner's nephew inherits her home full of oddities, and the ferret is part of the deal. The nephew tries to find a shelter, but none of them take ferrets. He begrudgingly figures out how to care for the critter, and she ends up taking care of him right back.
Gobi, the Rattlesnake
If there's any creature who could pull off the "misunderstood outcast" trope, it's a rattlesnake. Their rattles aren't a threat. They don't want to bite anyone. They're just scared. Life is scary when you're a noodle with a head.
This particular snake just so happens to be afraid of mice. His family abandons him because vegetarian snakes are socially unacceptable. They don't like him, but everyone else in the desert is afraid of him. While he's awkwardly snacking on grass, he runs into a blind mouse who's tired of being teased himself. By the time the mouse realizes his new friend is a snake, the pair are inseparable besties.
Bruiser, the Elephant Shrew
A baby elephant shrew and a baby elephant are swapped at birth. Their parents don't realize the mixup until it's too late, and they raise their oddball children as their own. Eventually, they realize that they don't quite fit in with their adopted families.
After realizing the truth, both venture out into the world to find their birth families — except the animal kingdom isn't sure what to do with a tiny rodent that behaves like an elephant or a full-sized elephant that behaves like a shrew. Yep, we'd watch that.
Rindi, the Capybara
Capybaras are the most unbothered animals we've ever seen. They're a whole vibe, and they need their own movie. They don't do much, but they get along with everyone, and we mean everyone. They soak in hot springs and look half asleep at all times. They let birds use them as boats, and crocodiles leave them alone because they don't even act like prey. They just sort of sit there, like, "Hungry? OK. Go on. Eat me."
The crocodiles don't know what to make of that, so they just leave. What would be amusing is if one Capybara baby wasn't like the rest. Instead of being zen like his siblings, he's riddled with anxiety, constantly rescuing his family from the dangers they don't even notice. When it's his turn to need a helping hand, will they return the favor? Tell us, Disney. We need to know.
Hammy, the Hammerhead Shark
The whole point of a hammerhead shark cartoon has to be their oddly shaped head. This would be another great short film: a hammerhead shark on a date with a very cute tiger shark. The suave great white shark tries to make Hammy look bad, but she finds his awkwardness endearing.
Sure, he has to swim sideways to fit through doorways, and he accidentally knocked the glasses out of the waiter's hand when he turned to order, but he's humble and has a huge heart. #Priorities.