What is Minionese? It’s the fictional language spoken by the cute little yellow Minion critters in the Despicable Me animated franchise. It sounds like gibberish – and it is to a large extent but it’s also a living, breathing language. Kind of. One that director and voice actor Pierre Coffin made up as he went along. It’s a mixture of various languages including French, Spanish, English and more – with a large dose of nonsense added in.
It’s very difficult to master though, as Steve Carell who plays villain-turned-good-guy Gru in the series and who had to speak Minionese in the latest instalment, attests.
“One of our directors does most of the minion voices and I had to actually do a little bit of Minionese in this movie and it’s really hard. It’s a very specific language. I wasn’t very good at it.”
FANDOM put Carell and his co-star Kristen Wiig, who plays Gru’s wife Lucy in the film, through their paces with a movie quiz – in Minionese.
The challenge? Identify the famous lines from each of their movies translated into Minionese. See how they did in the video above.
Despicable Me 3 continues the story of Gru, Lucy, their adorable daughters — Margo, Edith and Agnes — and the Minions.
After he is fired from the Anti-Villain League for failing to take down the latest bad guy to threaten humanity, Gru finds himself in the midst of a major identity crisis. But when a mysterious stranger shows up to inform Gru that he has a long-lost twin brother—a brother who desperately wishes to follow in his twin’s despicable footsteps—one former super-villain will rediscover just how good it feels to be bad.
Despicable Me 3 is out in the UK and US on June 30.