Keke Palmer And Uzo Aduba On What They Want Young Black Girls To See In Their ‘Lightyear’ Characters

There’s been a lot of buzz around Buzz this week with the release of the new Disney Pixar film Lightyear, in theaters today. The animated project tells the origin story of one of the most popular characters in the Toy Story franchise: Buzz Lightyear, played by Chris Evans.

The film introduces new characters into the mix, two of whom are Alisha Hawthorne, Buzz’s best friend and former commanding officer, voiced by Uzo Aduba, and Izzy Hawthorne, Alisha’s granddaughter and companion of Buzz on his new journey, voiced by Keke Palmer.

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The presence of Palmer and Aduba’s voices adds welcome diversity to the film’s cannon. Thinking on the moments that have gone viral on social media with children of color seeing themselves in characters in movies like Encanto and Turning Red, we asked the critically acclaimed actresses what they home young Black girls will see in their characters.

“I hope that they see that their passages have been paid for,” Aduba tells ESSENCE. “I hope they see that they can dream bigger than perhaps they dreamed the day before. That there is so much space and so much room for them to exist.”

Palmer shares that sentiment. “I feel the same way,” she says. “I want them to just see themselves and see it’s to infinity and beyond, Ms. girl.”

Check out our full interview with Keke Palmer and Uzo Aduba in the video above. Lightyear is in theaters now.


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