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How Julie Andrews Really Feels About Her Villainous Role In Minions: The Rise Of Gru

Illumination hit it big with the release of "Despicable Me" back in 2010 — a fun animated feature that would go on to launch a multi-billion dollar franchise. For some, the draw may have been the story of supervillain-turned-father Gru (Steve Carell) learning to love and accept his role as a parent of his three adopted daughters, but that's not why the "Despicable Me" IP has become so recognizable. That honor belongs to the Minions: yellow-skinned, overall-wearing creatures who speak in a strange language, love getting into mischief, and have taken pop culture by storm.

In the years since "Despicable Me" premiered, the Minions have become nigh-unavoidable. It's virtually impossible to go anywhere in person or online and not run into the little goofballs. In fact, they've become so popular that they're now the leads of their own spin-off prequel film franchise. "Minions" arrived in 2015, and "Minions: The Rise of Gru" followed suit in 2022. As one could imagine, the second film chronicles a young Gru's rise to super-villainy and reveals how he came to enlist the Minions to his cause. Along the way, they'll meet Gru's mom, Marlena Gru, as voiced by Julie Andrews.

According to the legendary actress and singer herself, Gru's mom in "The Rise of Gru" isn't the greatest person. Here's how she feels about playing her.

Andrews loved voicing the evil Marlena Gru

To promote the release of "Minions: The Rise of Gru," Julie Andrews stopped by "The Tonight Show" and spoke to host Jimmy Fallon about her time voicing Marlena Gru and her feelings toward the character (via YouTube). "Gru's mom is one of the worst characters you could possibly imagine. She's the worst role model for a mother, she's terrible to Gru, and it was a delight to get my teeth into it, I have to admit," she said with a laugh before showing off a clip from the film. This marks Andrews' third outing as Marlena, having voiced her in "Despicable Me" and "Despicable Me 3" previously.

From "Mary Poppins" to "The Sound of Music," Julie Andrews has built a career on playing kind, warm characters, not nasty, mean-spirited ones. Therefore, you're probably wondering how she wound up with the Marlena Gru role in the first place, and as it turns out, you're not alone. Andrews herself questioned why the minds behind the "Despicable Me" franchise came to her for the part. "I said, 'I can't do that. Why are you coming to me?' They said, 'Please just come and try,' and then it became such fun, and now it's mine," she told The Today Show (via YouTube) ahead of the debut of "Despicable Me 3."

While on paper, it might not look like Julie Andrews is the best fit for Gru's cold, calloused mother, she's proven nothing if not perfect for the part. Moviegoers will get to see where she goes with it next when "Minions: The Rise of Gru" arrives on July 1, 2022.