Teri Hatcher Adds Realness to Dottie in Disney Planes

Disclosure: I was provided with a trip to Los Angeles for a Disney Planes pre-screening event in return for my honest review. All expenses were paid by Disney and no other compensation given.

“At the end of the day, you’ve just gotta find the joy in [life] because you don’t want your life to feel like it’s something you have to do.”
~Teri Hatcher

As a single mom, Teri Hatcher is no stranger to doing things on her own. Even those things not typically considered the “woman” roles in life. But she also knows that when it needs to be done… she is going to get it done. This inspiration helped her as she began to add realness to Dottie in Disney Planes. Knowing Dottie, a forklift mechanic, was “sort of tough, smart, and capable, as well as friendly and caring” she knew that her role was an important piece to the puzzle. We were given the chance to have a chat with her at the #DisneyPlanesEvent and found out some fabulous insider info.


Dottie begrudgingly supports Dusty as he steps out of his comfort zone to shoot for the stars with his dream of racing. Wanting to be there for her friend, and yet worried about his well-being, Dottie has to find the balance in their friendship to do so. That meant that Teri Hatcher had to ensure that her voice as the character was not discouraging, and represented her concern for his well-being in the film.

Dusty and Dottie

One bit of information that you will hear over and over again about John Lasseter is his call for authenticity. He wants the animated characters to be as close to real life as they can be… even if they are planes or cars. In fact, Ms. Hatcher said that John himself came into a recording session with her at one point to make sure they captured the scene “as close to what you can imagine if you were filming a scene as a life actor and not an animated character.”

They wanted it to be [real]. So in this approach, for this character- for Dottie – I’m being as authentic, persuasive and as empathetic [as I can], and listening, and just feeling from the emotions. All the same sort of traits in a character that I would have if you were filming my face and my body. The sort of divergence, I guess, is that I get to show up not in hair and makeup; not worrying about any physicality, and really just relaxing into my voice and  just trying to tell the story through my voice.

Ms. Hatcher stated that John Lasseter and director, Klay Hall, told her they wanted to cry at the end of a scene.

It’s not like you can set out as an actress to make somebody cry, but what they meant was they just wanted the stakes to be real… in the same way that you would do that if you were acting in front of a camera.

Voicing Dottie in Disney Planes for Teri Hatcher was no different than playing a life character. She was thrilled to have her dream of being in a Disney film come true… and worked to ensure that she did it well. Being able to take just a couple of her lines and doing a (very small) voice recording in the studio, I applaud her for a job well done. Voice-over work is not easy and Dottie does a an exceptional job in the movie.


In fact, when we asked for her favorite part in the movie, I had to agree with her choice as far as Dottie’s scenes in the movie.

Love it! You can feel her emotions and really see how well her forklift character can really capture the scene and make this movie soar! What did you think?

One tidbit of information I found interesting was the way Teri Hatcher chose to “get into character” for Dottie. Considering the fact that she was playing a heavy piece of machinery, she decided to wear heavy shoes. She felt as though the weight of the shoes would make her feel “grounded and sort of heavy” like the puple forklift she was playing. It is fun stories like this that truly excite me about the film. Not to mention, the mere reason she said yes to the film:

You think about what are the reasons that you’re here? And, and one of them is to bring joy, and so this is a really great way to be a little part. I mean, Dottie is a little part of this movie, but getting to be a little part of a movie that’s gonna bring joy to a lot of families all over the world. And so when you get the call and they say, “Do you wanna be in this Disney movie?” That’s absolutely the first thought that goes through your brain…and then the answer is yes!

Do you want to be in a Disney movie? Would you say yes to the call?

Learn more about the August 9th release of Disney’s Planes by liking Disney Planes on Facebook or by following along on Twitter.