SHINEE Just Might Have Helped “Turning Red” Director Domee Shi Get Discovered

Being a fangirl pays off!

Disney-Pixar‘s Turning Red was clearly influenced by Director Domee Shi!

Domee Shi | Pixar

The movie focuses on Meilin “Mei” Lee, a 13-year-old Chinese Candian who goes through puberty in 2002. She experiences “the change” a bit differently from the average girl. When she gets stressed or experiences high emotions, she turns into a giant (but adorable) red panda.

“Turning Red” poster.

Like Mei, Domee is Chinese Canadian. She’s also quite the fangirl!

| Disney & Pixar

In Turning Red, like most of us, Mei and her friends are obsessed with a boy band. During the time period in which the film is set, the Backstreet Boys*NSYNC, and O-Town were the hottest groups. The fictional boy band seen in the film, 4*TOWN, obviously takes inspiration from these.

Domee Shi has also revealed that her own favorite K-Pop groups and idols inspired 4*TOWN as well. Netizens have found even further evidence to support this.

Now, in a Disney+ documentary on the making of Turning Red, Embrace the Panda: Making Turning Red, netizens realize just how big of a K-Pop stan Domee Shi is. Not only that, but it may have helped her get discovered.

A few minutes into the doc, Production Designer Rona Liu recounts the moment she discovered Domee. They were both quite young, and she happened upon Domee’s blog in which she saw an animation of a hamster dancing the choreography to SHINee‘s everso iconic “Ring Ding Dong.”

I first heard of Domee through seeing one of her ten-second animation clips. I was in college, and it was something that she posted on her blog. It was this dancing, twerking hamster to a K-Pop song. ‘Who is this girl? She’s probably going to be a really funny director one day.’

— Rona Liu

Rona Liu saw potential in Domee from that clip alone. And looking between that funny animation and Turning Red, there are clear similarities.

Shawols are excited to see one of their own achieve such success!


the Ring Ding Dong agenda 🙌🏼 #SHINee #shineeringdingdong #shawol #domeeshi #turningred #disney #disneyturningred #pixar #pixarturningred #kpopfyp

♬ original sound – jinkibeans

So, let this be a lesson in that being a K-Pop fan pays off and gets you jobs!

| @jinkibeans/TikTok

Domee Shi is not the only Turning Red crew member that’s a K-Pop fan though. The actress who brought Mei Lee to life with her voice, Rosalie Chiang, is also a huge multi-fan! Read about her below:

Disney Pixar’s “Turning Red” Star Rosalie Chiang Is A Certified K-Pop Fan

Source: Disney+

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