Kelly McDonald Brave

Kelly McDonald Brave


Voice Cast: Kelly McDonald, Billy Connolly, Emma Thompson
Directors: Mark Andrews, Brenda Chapman
Genre: Animation, Adventure, Action

Synopsis: If you had the chance to change your fate, would you?

Since ancient times, stories of epic battles and mystical legends have been passed through the generations across the rugged and mysterious Highlands of Scotland. In Brave, a new tale joins the lore when the courageous Merida confronts tradition, destiny and the fiercest of beasts.

Release Date: June 21st, 2012

Character Descriptions

Passionate and fiery, Merida (Voice of Kelly Macdonald) is a headstrong teenager of royal upbringing who is struggling to take control of her own destiny. She feels most at home in the outdoors honing her impressive athletic skills as an archer and swordfighter, and racing across the magnificent Highland countryside with her faithful horse, Angus. With a spirit as vibrant as her untamed hair, Merida also has a softness of heart, especially when it comes to her wee triplet brothers. As the daughter of the King and Queen, her life is weighted with responsibilities and expectations, causing her to yearn to preserve her freedom and independence. When Merida blatantly defies an ancient tradition, the consequences of her actions prove disastrous for the kingdom. She must race against time to make right the result of her reckless behavior, her journey compelling her to look inside to discover the meaning of bravery and reveal her true fate.

A vision of grace, wisdom and strength of character, Queen Elinor (Voice of Emma Thompson) is fiercely dedicated to the well being of her family and kingdom. As the measured, diplomatic counterpoint to her more impulsive husband, King Fergus, Elinor carries the weight of the kingdom on her shoulders in order to maintain the fragile peace between the volatile clans. Elinor strives to instill in Merida the knowledge and manner of a royal, expecting complete commitment to Elinor's standards. But her vision of her daughter's future is at odds with Merida's rebellious spirit and desire to forge her own path, which ultimately causes Elinor to face calamitous consequences.

King Fergus (Voice of Billy Connolly) is a heroic warrior with a majestic bear cape, broad sword and a knobby peg leg - the result of his much-regaled skirmish with the demon bear Mor'du. His vendetta against the beast who took his leg makes Fergus a ferocious and determined bear hunter, evidenced by a home full of mounted trophies of every size. Protector of his kingdom and family, Fergus has a heart as big as his triplet sons are mischievous and boundless love for his wife, Queen Elinor. But his pride for his first-born daughter Merida is unmatched, and he has gifted her his great skill and passion for the sword and the bow.

The Triplets: Identical triplets Harris, Hubert and Hamish are adorable, redheaded, and always ready to stir up a bit of mischief, especially if sweets are at stake.

Black as night with ivory muzzle and fetlocks, Angus is Merida's powerful Clydesdale and her most trusted confidant. Angus is Merida's escape from castle life into the deep forest and the highlands beyond. Merida target shoots from her perch on his broad back and is able to coax him into one adventure after another. Angus can be balky, stubborn and faint-hearted at times, but is ultimately a devoted and faithful friend to Merida.The Lords: The three lords of the kingdom - Dingwall, Macintosh and MacGuffin - are the unruly, overzealous leaders of their respective clans. Though once warring factions, they have been united under the sword of King Fergus and held together by the diplomacy and political savvy of Queen Elinor.

Strapping Lord MacGuffin (Voice of Kevin McKidd) is a man of few words, though his deep voice resounds across the land demanding respect.

Speaking an uncommon Scottish dialect that is incomprehensible to most, Young MacGuffin (Voice of Kevin McKidd) is a shy lad of large proportions.

Grumpy and quick-tempered, the scrappy Lord Dingwall (Voice of Robbie Coltrane) doesn't let being height-challenged get in the way of solving his problems with fisticuffs.Gangly, guileless and often lost in his own head, Wee Dingwall is the awkward son of Lord Dingwall.

The wiry, indignant and off-kilter leader of his clan, Lord Macintosh (Voice of Craig Ferguson) is always a heartbeat away from hysterics.

Young Macintosh knows he has it all - athletic physique, undeniable charm and long flowing locks that leave the lasses swooning in his wake.

Brave Fun Facts

Costume Change: With five dresses, plus a cloak, quiver, hand wrap and necklace, as well as torn dresses, Merida has a total of 22 different costumes. She also has five different hairstyles. Diva? Never.
Good Hair Day: Merida has more than 1500 individually sculpted, curly red strands that generate about 111,700 total hairs.
Big Stretch: If Merida's curls were straightened, her hair would be four feet long and reach the middle of her calf.

Queen Elinor:
Unwrapped: If Elinor's hair were unwrapped, it would be about six feet, six inches long.

King Fergus:
Complicated King: Fergus wears nine different simulated garments at the same time-each has its own movement that must be "simulated" by algorithms in the computer. His head hair and mustache are also simulated, as well as his sporran (pocket-like pouch) and scabbard (sheath for a sword). He has arm hair, chest hair, hair lining in his boot, as well as a full bear pelt on his bear-clawed cloak-all of which are simulated in some way.
Lotsa Layers: To achieve the mass of Fergus's kilt, the drape going across his chest has eight layers of cloth folded over and interacting with each other and other garments. The left, right and back sides of the drape have six layers each.

The Lords:
Tartan Time: For each clan, artists at Pixar created a new, unique tartan design.
Taking Liberties: The DunBroch tartan pattern is physically impossible to make with traditional tartan weaving methods.

Tertiary Characters:
Hairy Situation: There are more than 100 unique hair/facial hair combinations used in "Brave" for human characters and animals. Each variant can appear in any of nine different colors, creating more than 900 hairstyle/color variants.

The Environment
The Castle:
Inspired: Several castles served as reference for the DunBroch family castle, most notably Eilean Donan Castle in the Highlands and Dunnottar Castle, located just south of Stonehaven, Aberdeenshire. Dunnottar, a ruined medieval fortress believed to be from the 15th or 16th centuries, sparked a pivotal change of plans for the filmmakers. They intended to set the film's family castle on a loch up in the Highlands, but inspired by Donnottar's dramatic location, decided to move it to an outpost of the sea.
Breaking Ground: No Pixar film before "Brave" has had a castle in it, so the DunBroch castle had to be designed from the ground up, inside and out. Everything from the architecture of the structure itself to the tapestries in the hall and the moss on the stone walls was designed and built as 3D models in the computer. The production team visited, researched and studied a number of castles for reference.

Walk-in Closet: For the tertiary characters, 29 different modular garments were created for "Brave." From those (using varied boots and sporrans), 94 unique costumes were created.
Top-Notch Tailors: Some Pixar simulation artists worked as in-house, technical tailors on "Brave," building three-dimensional garments in the computer based on sketches provided by the art department. The 3D garments were "sewn" together in the computer, and then extra details such as frills and gathers were attached.
Limited Selection: Because "Brave" is set in ancient Scotland, the types of fabrics available during that time were limited to wools and linens.
Sit Up Straight: Merida's formal dress was designed in a light colored fabric, tailored to be tightly fitted and constricting with stiffer fabric, which reflects Queen Elinor's regal, controlling influence. The hem is decorated with beads and jewels.
Crafty: To develop the desired look for Queen Elinor's emerald dress in the film, the art department took actual matte silk fabric samples and painted metallic colors onto the fabric, adding other subtle embellishments. Shading artists in the characters department then replicated the look in the computer.

The World of Ancient Scotland:
Ambiance: The art department crafted approximately 350 paintings of leaves, brush and moss to create the appropriate atmosphere for the Scottish Highlands during ancient times.
Location Scouts: The "Brave" production team took two research trips to Scotland. While the modern-day country does not reflect the ancient time period seen in the film, team members visited landmark locations and attended select events to get a flavor for the current culture, and observe how much of Scotland's ancient history and tradition is still present.
Wee Room: On one of the research trips, the group stayed at the Kintail Lodge Hotel, in the western highlands of Scotland. There were eight men on the research team during this trip, and all eight were assigned to lodge in the hotel's "Wee Bunk House," a tiny room separate from the main hotel building that had six beds and one bathroom. (The women enjoyed more comfortable accommodations in the main building.) Lodging in these cozy quarters proved a memorable experience: the production team's key meeting room at Pixar is named in honor of the Wee Bunk House.
Magic or Myth: In Scotland, there is a natural phenomenon of swamp and bog gasses that seep up through the earth, and are blue in color like the flame of a pilot light. Scottish lore says that some people would follow these lights, thinking they were little fairies. The production team took this myth and created the "will o' the wisps" in "Brave." The will o' the wisps light a path and beckon Merida into the forest, leading her to change her fate.
Rock Around: The Callanish Standing Stones on the Isle of Lewis are one of the oldest of Scotland's mysterious wonders. They provided reference for the mysterious ring of stones Merida discovers in "Brave."

The Film:
Do the Math: In creating "Brave," 111,394 storyboards were drawn, 84,421 of which were delivered to Pixar's editorial team to create story reels of the work-in-progress film.
On the Move: There is simulation work (computer simulated movement) in 96 percent of all shots on "Brave." This is an unusually high amount for a Pixar film - the studio's simulation team was especially brave taking on such a challenge!

Brave Glossary

A story set in Scotland would be jiggery pokery without its share of Scottish words and phrases. And crivens, "Brave" has plenty! But it would all be for naught unless accompanied by a proper glossary, so here goes?

Indigenous, native
Taught to filmmakers by Emma Thompson (voice of Queen Elinor), who used it to describe "Brave's" Castle Dunbroch because it appears to have grown right out of the earth.

Blue Wode:
A blue dye extracted from a cabbage-type plant used by inhabitants of ancient Scotland to paint their bodies
Lord MacGuffin and Young MacGuffin paint their bodies in blue wode to proclaim that they are ready for battle at any moment.


Bunch of Galoots:
Many fools
galoot = clumsy, oafish person

A Celtic trumpet with a bell shaped like a boar's head. Held vertically so it can be heard in large crowds, a carnyx was used during wartime to send troops into battle.
In "Brave," it signals the start of the Highland Games.

Crivens, You're Fierce:
Wow! You're cool or ferocious or tough!
crivens = expression of surprise or shock

Dancing Tatty Bogel:
An expression that describes something outlandish or imaginary
tatty = shabby, cheap
bogle, boggle or bogill = ghost or folkloric being

A dialect from the Aberdeenshire region in Scotland
Elgin native Kevin McKidd (voice of MacGuffin and Young MacGuffin), who learned Doric from his grandfather, proposed to filmmakers for Young MacGuffin to speak the incomprehensible dialect in "Brave."

Dreadful Collywobbles:
Unwanted stomachache or a bad case of the nerves
collywobbles = upset stomach intestinal disturbances or a feeling of apprehension

For Naught:
For no reason

Finish What He Guddled in the First Place:
Fix, clean up or otherwise remedy something that's been horribly mishandled.
guddle = make a mess of it

Gamy Spell:
An unfortunate bit of magic
gamy = bad

Small, narrow, secluded valley

Googly Old Hag:
Outlandish, unattractive senior
googly = strange, odd

Giant Having a Jigger in the Bluebells:
Similar to Dancing Tatty Bogle, something that's absurd or fantastical

Though some will joke that a haggis is a small animal native to Scotland, it is actually a traditional Scottish pudding made with sheep's heart, liver and lungs, encased in a sheep's stomach and cooked for several hours. Often served with "neeps and tatties" (turnips and potatoes).

Highland Games:
Festivals that celebrate Scottish and Celtic culture and heritage, especially that of the Scottish Highlands. Includes competitions in piping and drumming, dancing, archery, caber tossing, stone put and other Scottish athletics, plus entertainment and exhibits.

Jiggery Pockery:

Jings Criven Help Ma Boab:
Oh my!
Exclamation of bewilderment or exasperation

A pleated and draped tartan fabric garment worn by Scottish men
During the production of "Brave" director Mark Andrews and several animators wore kilts to work on Fridays-dubbed Kilt Fridays-to get in the spirit of Scotland and the film's characters.




Manky Dogs:
Unsavory person or being
manky = dirty, worthless or in bad taste

Michty Me:
Wow! Holy cow!
An exclamation of surprise, shock or being overwhelmed

Useless individual

Nut 'Em:
Head-butt 'em

Scaffy Witch:
A tricky or slick being with magical powers
scaffy = trickster

Scared Simperin' Jackanapes:
Belittling description of a goofy and unworthy opponent
simpering = silly smile
jackanape = an insulting reference to a monkey or ape a braggart a mischievous child

Scuttle the Viking Longship:
Sink Viking ships by making holes in the bottom

Stuff Her Gob:
Eat with abandon
gob = mouth

A specially designed woven fabric that identifies a clan. April 6th is National Tartan Day in the United States.

Tossing Cabers:
A test of strength and skill seen in Highland Games in which the competitor raises a pole vertically with the small end down, and then throws it
Caber = a long, tapered section of a tree trunk

Turnip? or foolish person. Or both.


We'll Bile Yur Heed Wae Dumplin' Breed, Tae Make an Ursine Stew:
bile yer heed (boil your head) = don't be ridiculous. Also used as an exclamation if someone is doing something stupid and it's annoying
In "Brave" King Fergus sings what he'll do to the demon bear Mor'du when he catches him to avenge his lost leg. Not only will he boil his head, but he'll add dumplings to make a bear stew.

Will O' The Wisps:
Ghostly lights or small blue spirits that lead the way to treasure or doom.
In "Brave," the will o' the wisps lead Merida to change her fate.