The new Pixar short Float on Disney Plus has been heralded for featuring the studio’s first Filipino American characters.
Float animator Bobby Rubio told ABC7 News it almost didn’t happen.
“When I first thought of the short, I actually was thinking of making the characters White. And it’s because my unconscious bias, I assume because I was like, I don’t know if anyone wants to see a Filipino American,” Rubio explains. “It was luckily because of co-worker, a co-worker over here said, This is a story about you and your son. How’s your son going to feel when he looks up at the screen and that characters White. That hit me and I didn’t want my son to think that he wasn’t worthy of it. So from that point on I was like, ‘Okay, I’m doing this. We’ll tell our story.’ And we’re going to make them Filipino American.”
Float producer and fellow Filipino American Krissy Cababa called the decision “a huge deal. It’s a big deal,” she said. “Float is a story about parents learning to love their child for what that child is, and not what the parent wants them to be.”
Float is also a story of a parent’s acceptance of his child’s autism. You can catch the full story here.
This likely won’t be Rubio’s only attempt at representing his Filipino American culture. He tells CBR,com about a new digital novel he has.
“I have a new one called Neighborhood Legend and that one is special because that is me trying to do a Filipino superhero and the superhero uses escrima, which is a Filipino martial art. I did it because I love Nightwing and I love Black Widow and they both use escrima, but I thought it would be nice to have a Filipino superhero actually do the artform for once. I also want to incorporate Filipino folklore in Neighborhood Legend as well.”
AsAmNews has Asian America in its heart. We’re an all-volunteer effort of dedicated staff and interns. Check out our new Instagram account. Go to our Twitter feed and Facebook page for more content. Please consider interning, joining our staff or submitting a story.