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\'Moana\' is full of colorful South Pacific personalities
Animated film boasts a giant crab, a cute pig and a really dumb rooster.
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'Moana' is full of colorful South Pacific personalities
Brian Truitt, USA TODAY 11:08 a.m. EDT July 25, 2016
Chief Tui (voiced by Temuera Morrison) and his wife Sina (Nicole Scherzinger) are torn about their daughter's dreams of being a voyager in 'Moana.'
Directors Ron Clements and John Musker built worlds of colorful characters with their Disney classics
At home and during her seafaring quest to save her people, Moana (voiced by Auli‘i Cravalho) interacts with various personalities, some friendly and some crabby. Here\'s a rundown of the high-profile supporting cast for the animated film (in theaters Nov. 23):
Sneak peek: 'Moana' is 'beautiful' quest of courage
Voiced by Temuera Morrison, Tui is the chief of Motunui Island and Moana’s overprotective father, who doesn’t understand his daughter’s innate need to sail the Seven Seas. “He’s seen bad things happen because of this imbalance of man and nature, so he wants everybody to stay inside,” says Clements. On the other hand, Moana’s mom, Sina (Nicole Scherzinger), is sympathetic to her child’s concerns. “She’s very warm and supportive of her daughter, but she’s trying to negotiate the difference between the two of them and be this peacemaker,” he says.
Gramma Tala (Rachel House) understands Moana's passion to set sail.
Moana’s grandmother (Rachel House) is a pivotal character who shares the teen’s passion for the ocean. “Tala is kind of the village crazy lady,” Clements says. “She has a close relationship with Moana, closer really than her parents in some ways.” The elder woman also recognizes the bigger problems facing her people, "so she really helps propel Moana on her journey to solve these things,” Musker says.
Jemaine Clement voices the giant crab Tamatoa.
Tamatoa (Jemaine Clement) is a comically villainous 50-foot crab from Lalotai, the realm of monsters. He and Moana’s voyaging partner Maui (Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson) have a history, Clements says. “In fact, Tamaota is in possession of Maui\'s valuable fish hook, which he desperately wants back.” Tamatoa also has a big song in the movie and a deadpan sense of humor. The actor is “a wonderful improviser, so we’ve encouraged him to let loose," Musker says. "He’s put in some very quirky, funny Jemaine-isms into the script.”
Alan Tudyk lent his own crows to voice the not-so-bright rooster Heihei.
Heihei is a dimwitted rooster (Alan Tudyk) who tags along on Moana’s journey. He doesn’t have any actual lines — instead, Tudyk came up with his own voice for the character with rooster crows and other sounds. While Heihei is in a sense more anthropomorphic than the other animal characters, “he may be stupider than most chickens you have met,” Clements says.
The adorable pig Pua is best friend to the title character of 'Moana.'
The very cute little pig doesn’t have a voice but is Moana’s best friend and constant companion. “While the rest of the island is hesitant for Moana to sail and think she’s kind of crazy to go into the ocean, Pua — aside from being a pig who’s unable to tell her she’s crazy — joins Moana on every journey she goes on,” says Cravalho.
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