Turning Red 2024 Parents Guide

Turning Red,” a 2022 and 20224 animated fantasy comedy film, brings a fresh perspective to the Pixar lineup. Directed by Domee Shi, known for her previous work on the short film “Bao” (2018), this feature marks a significant milestone as the first Pixar film solely directed by a woman. Produced by Lindsey Collins, the movie features a talented voice cast, including Rosalie Chiang, Sandra Oh, Ava Morse, Hyein Park, Maitreyi Ramakrishnan, Orion Lee, Wai Ching Ho, Tristan Allerick Chen, and James Hong.

Set in Toronto, Ontario, in 2002, the storyline revolves around Meilin “Mei” Lee, a 13-year-old Chinese-Canadian student with a unique predicament. Mei transforms into a giant red panda whenever she experiences intense emotions due to a hereditary curse. The film explores themes of identity, adolescence, and heritage against the backdrop of a captivating fantasy world.

The movie’s development began in May 2018, with Domee Shi leading as the writer and director of this ambitious project. Drawing inspiration from her own experiences growing up in Toronto, Shi pitched multiple concepts to Pixar, with “Turning Red” emerging as the chosen endeavor. Development spanned four years with an approximate budget of $175 million, making it the fastest production for a Pixar film.

The design and animation of “Turning Red” are notably influenced by anime works, and to capture this aesthetic, hand-drawn 2D animated effects were incorporated into Pixar’s 3D animation. Ludwig Göransson, in his first venture into animated film scoring, composed the musical score, while Billie Eilish and Finneas O’Connell contributed original songs to the soundtrack.

Originally slated for a worldwide theatrical release, the film’s plans changed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. “Turning Red” premiered in various locations, including London, Toronto, and Los Angeles, with a special screening in February 2022. However, the broader release occurred on March 11, 2022, exclusively on the Disney+ streaming service, followed by theatrical releases in most countries. Despite the altered release strategy, the film achieved critical acclaim and grossed over $20 million.

Notably, “Turning Red” received a nomination for Best Animated Feature at the 95th Academy Awards, adding to its list of accolades. As it gears up for a theatrical release in the United States on February 9, 2024, the film stands as a testament to Pixar’s commitment to diverse storytelling and pushing creative boundaries in the world of animation

Movie NameTurning Red
RatingPG
GenreKids & Family, Comedy, Fantasy, Animation
Original LanguageEnglish
DirectorDomee Shi
ProducerLindsey Collins
WriterJulia Cho, Domee Shi
Release Date (Theaters)Feb 9, 2024 (Wide)
Release Date (Streaming)Mar 11, 2022
Runtime1h 40m
DistributorDisney/Pixar
Production CoPixar Animation Studios, Walt Disney Pictures
Sound MixDolby Atmos
Aspect RatioFlat (1.85:1)
View the CollectionPixar

Turning Red Plot Summary

In the captivating animated film “Turning Red,” we follow the journey of Mei Lee, a spirited and quirky thirteen-year-old who finds herself at the crossroads between maintaining her role as her mother’s devoted daughter and navigating the tumultuous path of adolescence. The narrative beautifully unfolds as Mei grapples with the inevitable transformations that come with her age—alterations in her interests, the dynamics of her relationships, and the bewildering changes occurring in her own body.

Mei’s life takes an extraordinary twist when, in moments of heightened excitement (which, let’s face it, is practically constant for a teenager), she undergoes a whimsical metamorphosis—she magically “poofs” into a colossal red panda! This enchanting and somewhat comical phenomenon adds an extra layer of complexity to Mei’s already intricate teenage existence, blending the challenges of growing up with a touch of magical realism.

As Mei navigates the challenges of adolescence, the struggle between conformity and self-discovery intensifies. The film masterfully weaves together themes of identity, acceptance, and the wild rollercoaster ride of teenage emotions. Mei’s journey becomes a metaphorical exploration of embracing one’s true self, even when it feels like the entire world might be watching.

With its heartwarming storytelling and vibrant animation, “Turning Red” transcends the boundaries of a typical coming-of-age tale. It invites audiences into a world where the fantastical and the relatable coalesce, creating a narrative that resonates with viewers of all ages. Through laughter, tears, and the unpredictable adventures that come with being a teenager, Mei Lee’s transformation becomes a celebration of the unique and extraordinary journey each person takes on the path to self-discovery.

Turning Red 2024 Parents Guide

Language: The movie includes minimal mild language, with occasional instances of light, age-appropriate humor. Parents can expect language that aligns with the PG-13 rating, ensuring a suitable experience for teenage viewers.

Violence: Animated and comical moments are prevalent, contributing to the film’s overall light-hearted tone. There are no intense or graphic scenes of violence. The animated nature of the content keeps any potential impact on younger audiences to a minimum.

Themes: The film delves into themes of adolescence, identity, and self-discovery. These topics are explored with a relatable and approachable narrative, making it suitable for teenagers navigating similar life experiences.

Romance: “Turning Red” features mild teenage crushes and relationships, reflecting the coming-of-age theme. The romantic elements are presented in a wholesome manner, aligning with the PG-13 rating.

Body Transformation: Mei undergoes a fantastical transformation into a red panda, adding an imaginative and visually appealing aspect to the storyline. There are no frightening or explicit scenes related to this transformation, making it suitable for a broad audience.

Excitement-Induced Transformation: A recurring theme in the movie involves Mei transforming into a red panda when she gets excited. These instances are frequent but are presented in a lighthearted and entertaining manner, ensuring that the transformations do not veer into unsettling territory.

Humor: The film incorporates comedic elements that cater to a wide audience. The humor is age-appropriate and adds to the overall enjoyment of the movie.

Cast of Turning Red Film

  1. Rosalie Chiang as Meilin, Panda Meilin Voice
  2. Sandra Oh as Ming, Panda Ming, Young Ming Voice
  3. Ava Morse as Miriam Voice
  4. Hyein Park as Abby Voice
  5. Maitreyi Ramakrishnan as Priya Voice
  6. Orion Lee as Jin Voice
  7. Tristan Allerick Chen as Tyler Voice
  8. Lori Tan Chinn as Auntie Chen Voice
  9. James Hong as Mr. Gao Voice
  10. Sasha Roiz as Mr. Kieslowski Voice
  11. Jordan Fisher as Robaire (4Town) Voice*
  12. Finneas as Jesse (4Town) Voice*
  13. Wai Ching Ho as Voice
  14. Addie Chandler as Voice
  15. Grayson Villanueva as Voice
  16. Josh Levi as Voice
  17. Topher Ngo as Voice
  18. Lillian Lim as Voice
  19. Mia Tagano as Voice
  20. Sherry Cola as Voice

Key Points

  • Turning Red (2022) is a Pixar animated film directed by Domee Shi, marking Pixar’s first film directed solely by a woman.
  • The story follows Mei Lee, a 13-year-old who transforms into a red panda when experiencing intense emotions, and exploring themes of identity and adolescence.
  • Development began in 2018, with inspiration from Shi’s Toronto upbringing. The film blends anime influences with hand-drawn 2D effects on Pixar’s 3D animation.
  • Originally planned for theaters, the release was altered due to the pandemic. Despite this, it received critical acclaim, grossing over $20 million and earning an Oscar nomination for Best Animated Feature.
  • The Parents Guide mentions mild language, animated violence, and themes suitable for teenagers.
  • The cast includes Rosalie Chiang, Sandra Oh, Ava Morse, and others.
  • The film signifies Pixar’s commitment to diverse storytelling, with a U.S. theatrical release on February 9, 2024.