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Minions: Why Despicable Me's Cast Of Lovable, Yellow Doofuses Are All Males

For fans wondering why the yellow, pill-shaped henchmen under the command of the evil genius Gru (voice of Steve Carell) in the "Despicable Me" and "Minions" movies are only male, franchise co-director Pierre Coffin has a logical explanation. In a 2015 interview with The Wrap, Coffin simply explained, "Seeing how dumb and stupid they often are, I just couldn't imagine Minions being girls."

The Minions were first introduced in the first "Despicable Me" movie in 2010 as supporting characters. Before too long, however, the yellow goofballs grew in popularity and are easily on the winning end of the 10 "Despicable Me" characters ranked worst to best. Their jibber-jabbering dialogue is largely provided by Coffin.

While Carrell's and Coffin's voices are featured prominently in the "Despicable Me" and "Minions" movies, thankfully there are many prominent female voices taking part in the franchise as other characters. In the "Despicable Me" movies, film icon Julie Andrews voices Gru's mom, Marlena, while Miranda Cosgrove voices Margo, one of the trio of sisters Gru adopted in the first film. In addition, Kristen Wiig voices Anti-Villain League Agent Lucy Wilde in the second and third "Despicable Me" movies, while Sandra Bullock lends her vocal skills to "Minions" supervillain Scarlet Overkill.

Plus, the 2022 sequel "Minions: The Rise of Gru" features even more top-notch female acting talent, as Taraji P. Henson voices the leader of the villainous group the Vicious 6, while Michelle Yeoh voices Master Chow, who teaches the Minions the art of Kung Fu. 

The main Minions' names have more meaning than you might think

One of the ways viewers figured out the seemingly gender-free Minions in the "Despicable Me" and "Minions" movies were actually male stemmed from the names of the principal henchmen, which include Kevin, Stuart, Bob, Otto, Dave, and Tim.

Pierre Coffin said the relatively common names actually have interesting derivations that relate to the characters' functions in the franchise. "Kevin comes from an ancient Greek word ('Kevinos') which means leader," Pierre Coffin explained to The Wrap. "Stuart comes from the Latin word 'Stuartalumni' which means (loosely translated), 'the one who slacks.' As for Bob, it means short. For Robert."

For fans who love the madness of the Minions and are wondering, "Will there be a 'Despicable Me 4?'" rest assured, a sequel is in the works. Once again featuring the voices of Coffin, Steve Carrell, and Kristin Wiig, "Despicable Me 4" is currently set for a July 3, 2024, release.