Despicable Me 2

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Despicable Me 2 is a 2013 American computer-animated action-comedy film produced by Illumination Entertainment for Universal Pictures. It is the sequel to 2010's Despicable Me, and was directed by Chris Renaud and Pierre Coffin and written by Cinco Paul and Ken DaurioSteve CarellRussell BrandMiranda CosgroveElsie Fisher, and Dana Gaier reprise their roles as Gru, Dr. Nefario, Margo, Agnes, and Edith, respectively. Kristen Wiig, who played Miss Hattie in the first film, voices agent Lucy Wilde, while Ken Jeong, who played the Talk Show Host, voices Floyd Eagle-san. New cast members include Benjamin Bratt as Eduardo "El Macho" Pérez and Steve Coogan as Silas Ramsbottom, the head of the fictional Anti-Villain League (AVL).

Despicable Me 2 premiered on June 5, 2013 in Australia, and was released in the United States on July 3, 2013. The film received mostly positive reviews from critics, and was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature and Best Original Song (for "Happy"), losing both to Walt Disney Animation StudiosFrozen. Grossing over $970.8 million worldwide against its budget of $76 million, the film became the second-highest-grossing animated film of the year and the third-highest-grossing film of the year; it is also the most profitable film in the 101-year history of Universal Pictures. It was followed by a spin-off/prequel titled Minions, focusing on the little yellow henchmen before they met Gru, on July 10, 2015, and a third main installment titled Despicable Me 3 on June 30, 2017.

Plot[edit | edit source]

A mysterious vehicle uses a huge magnet to steal a highly potent mutagen known as PX-41 from a secret laboratory in the Arctic Circle. The Anti-Villain League (AVL), headed by Silas Ramsbottom, tries to recruit former supervillain Gru to track down those responsible and recover the mutagen, but Gru refuses, claiming that he is now a legitimate businessman and the devoted father of Margo, Edith, and Agnes. Gru's friend and assistant Dr. Nefario says that he misses being evil and leaves Gru for new employment. Gru reluctantly agrees to investigate the theft with the AVL, and is partnered with undercover AVL agent Lucy Wilde.

The pair begins their search at the Paradise Shopping Mall, disguised as bakery employees. Gru immediately comes to suspect Mexican restaurant owner Eduardo Pérez of being the infamous "El Macho", a legendary supervillain who supposedly died in "the most macho way possible" of riding a shark into an active volcano with 250 pounds of dynamite strapped to his chest. Gru and Lucy break into Eduardo's restaurant at night, but find no proof. Meanwhile, Agnes, confiding in her dream to one day have a mother, believes that Gru will fall in love with Lucy, although Gru states that his relationship with Lucy is professional.

Although he holds Eduardo as his chief suspect, Gru agrees to pursue other people including wig merchant Floyd Eagle-san. However, after witnessing Eduardo's son Antonio woo Margo and invite everyone to his Cinco de Mayo party, Gru renews his focus on Eduardo. He is then set up on a dinner date with a vacuous woman named Shannon. The date goes horribly, and Shannon is about to humiliate Gru after she spots his wig, until Lucy, visiting the restaurant herself, saves Gru and renders Shannon unconscious with a tranquilizer gun. While they take Shannon home, Gru and Lucy spend personal time together, and Gru falls in love with her, proving Agnes right.

The next day, the AVL arrests Eagle-san after finding an almost-empty jar of the mutagen in his shop, and the investigation is closed by Ramsbottom. Lucy is reassigned to Australia, but gives Gru her lipstick taser as a gift before leaving. A heartbroken Gru, having lacked the courage to ask Lucy out on a date, instead takes his girls to the Cinco de Mayo party. While there, he follows Eduardo and discovers a secret musical step-activated elevator, where he finally finds proof that Eduardo is in fact El Macho.

On her flight, Lucy, realizing she has also fallen in love with Gru, jumps out of the plane and hang glides down to the party. Gru discovers Macho and his partner Nefario have been abducting Gru's Minions and using the stolen PX-41 serum to mutate them into purple, savage, and hairy "Evil Minions". Macho plans to launch rockets full of the mutated Minions into major cities in order to achieve world domination. He gives Gru the chance to team up with him, but Gru walks away.

Lucy later arrives at the party, but Macho captures Lucy after Pollito, Macho's pet chicken, retrieves her AVL ID badge from her purse. Nefario rejoins Gru, who fakes being captured with two other minions to help him rescue Lucy. Fighting alongside his daughters and Nefario, Gru and his team return the Minions to their normal, friendly, yellow state using jelly containing a powerful antidote created by Nefario. Macho then takes the mutagen himself and turns into a giant, violent, and vicious purple monster, but Gru and Nefario defeat him using Lucy's lipstick taser and a fart gun.

Gru finds Lucy strapped to a TNT-loaded shark rocket and starts to untie her, but Pollito launches the rocket, sending it flying towards the same volcano where Macho had previously faked his death. Lucy accepts Gru's invitation for a date, and the pair dive into the ocean seconds before the rocket enters the volcano and explodes. After a comical 147 dates, Gru and Lucy get married, and Margo, Edith, and Agnes finally have someone close to a mother.

Voice cast[edit | edit source]

  • Steve Carell as Gru, a former villain turned father (and then member of the Anti-Villain League).
  • Kristen Wiig as Lucy Wilde, an Anti-Villain League agent and then Gru's love interest. Wiig previously voiced Miss Hattie in the first film.
  • Benjamin Bratt as Eduardo "El Macho" Pérez, the owner of Salsa & Salsa, a Mexican restaurant in the Paradise Mall, and the mastermind behind the theft of the PX-41 serum. Al Pacino was originally cast in the role and had recorded all his lines, but left the film due to creative differences.
  • Miranda Cosgrove as Margo, the oldest child of the three girls.
  • Russell Brand as Dr. Nefario, Gru's elderly, hearing impaired gadget man.
  • Steve Coogan as Silas Ramsbottom, the director of the Anti-Villain League.
  • Ken Jeong as Floyd Eagle-san, the owner of Eagle Hair Club, a wig store in the Paradise Mall.
  • Elsie Fisher as Agnes, the youngest child of the three girls.
  • Dana Gaier as Edith, the middle child of the three girls.
  • Moisés Arias as Antonio Pérez, Margo's first love interest and Eduardo's son.
  • Nasim Pedrad as Jillian, Gru's irritating matchmaking neighbor who wants Gru to date her friends.
  • Kristen Schaal as Shannon, Jillian's superficial friend.
  • Pierre Coffin as Kevin, Stuart, Bob and additional and evil Minions. According to Coffin, he lent his voice to 899 Minions.
  • Chris Renaud as additional and evil Minions.
    • Renaud also voices an Italian waiter.
  • Vanessa Bayer as Flight Attendant.
  • Nickolai Stoilov as Arctic Lab Guards.

Additional voices[edit | edit source]

Production[edit | edit source]

In July 2010, Illumination CEO Chris Meledandri said that a sequel was in the works. By June 2011, the release date was scheduled for July 3, 2013. Miranda Cosgrove stated on her official Facebook and Twitter page on October 14, 2011 that she had recorded her first lines, while Meledandri confirmed in February 2012 that they had started working on the film.

Casting[edit | edit source]

In October 2011, The Hollywood Reporter reported that Javier Bardem was negotiating to voice a villain, named El Macho, but the negotiations failed. By February 2012, Al Pacino had joined the cast to voice the villain. In April 2012, producers confirmed that Steve Carell, Russell Brand, Miranda Cosgrove, Dana Gaier and Elsie Fisher were returning to reprise their roles. Kristen Wiig, who voiced Miss Hattie in the original film, voices Lucy Wilde, an agent of the Anti-Villain League (AVL) who recruits Gru to track and take down a tough, Mexican villain named El Macho. Steve Coogan joined the cast as Silas Ramsbottom, the head of the Anti-Villain League.

On May 3, 2013, just a month before the film's premiere, producers announced that Al Pacino had left the film over creative differences about how his character should come to life. At the time of his departure, Pacino's character had already been fully voiced and animated. Chris Renaud, co-director of the film, commented on Pacino's departure: "So we don't want an unhappy actor, and we want something that is well-realized on all sides. If you don't see eye to eye, sometimes it's easier to (part company) and move on from there." Benjamin Bratt, who had already been considered before Pacino, stepped in to voice Eduardo. Chris Meledandri, producer of the film, admitted that he was not "aware of any of the major animated films of the last 15 years that has brought an actor in at such a late stage". Due to the finished animation, Bratt had to match his timing exactly to the character's mouth movement. Initially, during his five-day recording, he tried to imitate Pacino's voice, but found it impossible, saying "no one can out-Al Pacino Al Pacino". He ended up only using Pacino as an inspiration, and resolved to go with his own interpretation of the character. His work was commended by Variety, saying: "You'd never guess he wasn't the filmmakers' first choice."

Release[edit | edit source]

Despicable Me 2 premiered on June 5, 2013 at Event Cinemas in Bondi Junction, New South Wales, Australia. Steve Carell and Miranda Cosgrove were present at the red carpet premiere. In France, it premiered on June 12, 2013 as part of the Annecy International Animated Film Festival. The American premiere was held at Universal CityWalk in Los Angeles on June 22, 2013; Steve Carell, Miranda Cosgrove, Kristen Wiig, Benjamin Bratt, Ken Jeong, Elsie Fisher, Dana Gaier, Nasim Pedrad and composer Pharrell Williams were present at the "yellow carpet" premiere.

The film was theatrically released in the United States on July 3, 2013. It was digitally remastered into IMAX 3D format and released in select international IMAX theatres. This film was also shown in the 4DX format, featuring tilting seats, water sprays, strobe lightning, aroma, wind, pops, and ticklers, in selected countries. Cinépolis opened its first 4DX room at the Centro Comercial Limonar Premier mall in Cali, Colombia, with the release of the film.

As with the first film, which did not have a theatrical release in China, the film's distributor Universal Pictures had troubles releasing the sequel. When it was reported in July 2013 that the film had been denied a theatrical release in China, then the second largest film market in the world, some analysts attributed this to the protection of locally produced animation. There were also rumors that the film's release was banned in China because the film's minions too much resembled former Chinese president Jiang Zemin. China's Film Bureau was "furious" about the negative comments, stating that the film was not submitted for censorship approval. In fact, there was reportedly a "commercial conflict" between Universal and Edko Films, the film's local distributor, over which titles are to be imported. Edko had decided that the film "would not do well in China and decided against using one of the precious quota slots for the film." In December 2013, a few weeks after the Universal Pictures' announcement that it would open a Beijing office, it was reported that Despicable Me 2 would be theatrically released in China on January 10, 2014.

Marketing[edit | edit source]

A blimp dressed to appear as a Minion named the "Despicablimp" toured the United States from March 2013 in a six-month tour to promote the film's release.  As one of the largest airships in the world, measuring 165 feet (50 m) in length, 55 feet (17 m) in height, and weighing 8,000 pounds (3.6 t), it crossed the country three times during its 20,000 miles (32,000 km)-long tour, visiting hundreds of events, including the film's premiere in Hollywood. The blimp, an American Blimp Corporation A-150 model, could be tracked in real-time via GPS at the Despicablimp Command Center website, which allowed fans to post photos of sightings, and compete for various prizes, including for a ride in the blimp.

A free mobile action video game titled Despicable Me: Minion Rush was released on June 13, 2013. The game, developed by Gameloft, was adapted for iPhone, iPad and Android devices. Played as one of the Minions, it allows customization of the character, who must perform various tasks, including defeating Vector and a new villain created for the game, to earn the title of Minion of the Year. The game was downloaded more than 100 million times in the first three months after its release, and won a BAFTA's British Academy Children's Award in the category BAFTA's Kids Vote. For the film's release, Roblox, a massively multiplayer online game, released two virtual items, a Minion and goggles. Six books were released for the film: The Junior Novel, The Anti-Villain League Handbook, Undercover Super SpiesAttack of the Evil Minions!Make a Minion, and Meet the Minions.

Universal and Illumination partnered with over 100 licensing and promotional partners in a deal valued at an unprecedented $250 million. One of the partners was McDonald's, which included in its Happy Meals various Minion toys, some of them unique to a specific country. To take advantage of banana-loving Minions, Chiquita Brands International ran various sweepstakes, and a Minion, voiced by Pierre Coffin, performed the song "Chiquita Banana" in the film. Thinkway Toys released various toys and figures, and Hasbro made special Monopoly and Operation games. Custom 3D glasses, modelled after the Minions' goggles, were released exclusively at Best Buy and Look3D, the producer of the glasses, for use in RealD 3D theatres and with passive 3D home theatre systems.

Home media[edit | edit source]

Despicable Me 2 was released in Digital HD on November 26, 2013, and on DVD and Blu-ray on December 10, 2013. The DVD and Blu-ray combo pack features three "mini movies" titled PuppyPanic in the Mailroom, and Training Wheels. A Walmart exclusive Blu-ray/DVD combo pack included two limited edition Minion toys. In its first week of home entertainment release, 4.5 million physical and digital units had been sold, earning $80 million and breaking several records. The film had the highest first-week sales for a digital title ever and became the best selling animated Blu-ray title in its first week, surpassing its predecessor, which previously held the record. Despicable Me 2 was the best selling Blu-ray of 2013 with 4,689,747 sold for a total of $93,734,824 in sales. It was also the second best selling DVD for the year 2013 with 4,566,911 sold for sales totaling $77,250,269. As of January 2015, Despicable Me 2 has sold 6,998,018 DVDs and 5,560,038 Blu-ray discs totalling $112,572,748 and $114,061,866 respectively totalling $226,634,614 in North America.

Despicable Me 2 was released on Ultra HD Blu-ray on June 6, 2017.

Soundtrack[edit | edit source]

Despicable Me 2: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack is the soundtrack album for the film, released on June 18, 2013 through Back Lot Music. The original music was composed by Heitor Pereira and Pharrell Williams. The album was promoted by the highly successful single "Happy" performed by Williams.

Track listing[edit | edit source]

All music composed by Heitor Pereira, except where noted.

  1. Scream - Cee Lo Green
  2. Another Irish Drinking Song - Pierre Coffin
  3. Just a Cloud Away - Pharrell Williams
  4. Happy - Pharrell Williams
  5. I Swear (John Michael Montgomery) - Pierre Coffin
  6. Y.M.C.A. (Village People) - Pierre Coffin
  7. Fun, Fun, Fun - Pharrell Williams
  8. Despicable Me - Pharrell Williams
  9. PX-41 Labs
  10. The Fairy Party
  11. Lucy and the AVL
  12. Goodbye Nefario
  13. Time for Bed
  14. Break-In
  15. Stalking Floyd Eaglesan
  16. Moving to Australia
  17. Going to Save the World
  18. El Macho
  19. Jillian
  20. Take Her Home
  21. El Macho's Lair
  22. Home Invasion
  23. The Big Battle
  24. Ba Do Bleep - Chris Renaud

Chart positions[edit | edit source]

Chart (2013–14) Peak


Belgian Albums (Ultratop Flanders) 163
Belgian Albums (Ultratop Wallonia) 160
UK Compilation Albums (OCC) 48
US Billboard 200 86
US Independent Albums (Billboard) 19
US Top Soundtracks (Billboard) 3

Reception[edit | edit source]

Critical response[edit | edit source]

Despicable Me 2 received mostly positive reviews from critics. The review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes reported a 73% approval rating with an average rating of 6.6/10 based on 173 reviews. The website's consensus reads, "Despicable Me 2 offers plenty of eye-popping visual inventiveness and a number of big laughs." Another review aggregator, Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating from mainstream critics, gave the film a score of 62 out of 100, based on 39 critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews". The film earned an "A" from audiences polled by CinemaScore, on an A+ to F scale.

Box office[edit | edit source]

Despicable Me 2 grossed $368 million in North America, and $602.7 million in other countries, for a worldwide total of $970.8 million. Calculating in all expenses, estimated that the film made a profit of $394.5 million. It is currently the thirtieth highest-grossing film, the sixth highest-grossing animated film, the third highest-grossing 2013 film (behind Frozen and Iron Man 3), the second highest-grossing 2013 animated film, the second highest-grossing Illumination Entertainment film, the fifth highest-grossing Universal Studios film, and the highest-grossing Universal animated film (surpassing the six-year-old record held by Computeropolis 2 in 2007). With a budget of $76 million, the film is the most profitable film in the 101-year history of Universal Pictures.

Accolades[edit | edit source]

Award Category Recipient Result
Kids' Choice Awards Favorite Animated Movie Nominated
Favorite Voice From an Animated Movie Steve Carell
Miranda Cosgrove Won

Prequel and sequel[edit | edit source]

Prequel[edit | edit source]

Main article: Minions (film)

A prequel feature film titled Minions, featuring the Minions as the main characters, was released on July 10, 2015. Written by Brian Lynch, it was directed by Pierre Coffin and Kyle Balda, and produced by Chris Meledandri and Janet Healy. The film, set in the 1960s, focuses on the Minions before they met Gru, where they compete for the right to become henchmen of an ambitious villain, Scarlet Overkill, voiced by Sandra Bullock.

Sequel[edit | edit source]

Main article: Despicable Me 3

A third film titled Despicable Me 3 was released on June 30, 2017. The film was directed by Pierre Coffin and Kyle Balda, with Eric Guillon serving as co-director, and was produced by Chris Meledandri and Janet Healy. Cinco Paul and Ken Daurio returned to write the screenplay for the film. Steve Carell, Kristen Wiig, Miranda Cosgrove, Dana Gaier, Julie Andrews and Steve Coogan reprised their roles from previous films as Gru, Lucy Wilde, Margo, Edith, Marlena Gru, and Silas Ramsbottom, respectively. New cast members include Trey Parker as former child star-turned-supervillain Balthazar Bratt, Jenny Slate as AVL member Valerie Da Vinci, and Nev Scharrel as the new voice of Agnes. Steve Carell and Steve Coogan also voiced new characters: Gru's long-lost twin brother Dru, and his courteous butler Fritz. Pierre Coffin and Chris Renaud reprised their roles as the Minions, respectively.

v - e - d
Despicable Me logo 2.png
Films: Despicable MeDespicable Me 2Despicable Me 3
Felonius GruLucy WildeMargo GruEdith GruAgnes GruMarlena GruDru GruVectorEl MachoAntonio PérezBalthazar Bratt

v - e - d
Universal Animation Studios
Ama and the Mysterious Crystal (1997) · Paint World (1999) · Mistress Masham's Repose (2000) · Magina (2003) · Computeropolis (2004) · Onion Mastori: The Movie (2005) · Curious George (2006) · Me & Mobo (2006) · Computeropolis 2 (2007) · Swapped (2008) · Woo La La (2009) · Computeropolis 3 (2010) · Nepola's Odyssey (2011) · Quest (2012) · Luna & Zak (2013) · Nepola's Odyssey II (2014) · Paradoria (2015) · Imagimals (2017) · Lix (2017) · Computeropolis: The Deep Web (2018) · Sev: Indehindrance Day (2019) · Paradoria 2 (2019) · Imagimals 2 (2020)

Upcoming: Computeropolis: Webcation (2021) · Mechagirl (2022)

Despicable Me (2010) · Hop (2011) · The Lorax (2012) · Despicable Me 2 (2013) · Minions (2015) · The Secret Life of Pets (2016) · Sing (2016) · Despicable Me 3 (2017) · The Grinch (2018) · The Secret Life of Pets 2 (2019) · Esqua (2020)

Upcoming: Sing 2 (2021) · Minions: The Rise of Gru (2022) · Untitled animated Mario film (2022)

DreamWorks Animation
Dusk and Dawn: A Zodiacal Night (2018) · Greenuts (2018) · How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World (2019) · Abominable (2019) · Trolls World Tour (2020) · The Croods: A New Age (2020)

Upcoming: Spirit Untamed (2021) · The Boss Baby: Family Business‎‎ (2021) · The Bad Guys (2022) · Puss in Boots: The Last Wish (2022)

Gingo Movies
Hatty in the Big City: The Movie (1999) · Cardcaptor Sakura: The Movie (1999) · Going Francisco (2001) · The Gabriel Garza Movie (2002) · The Whackems: One Big Movie (2003) · Zina and the Vivid Crew (2004) · The Pandemoniums Movie (2009) · The Ace of All Trades Movie: Too Hot For Theaters! (2010) · FusionMania: The Movie (2012) · Planetokio (2014)
Multimedia Animation
Liche's Wish (1990) · East of the Sun and West of the Moon (1992) · Romeo and Juliet (1994)
Amblin Entertainment
An American Tail (1986) · The Land Before Time (1988) · An American Tail: Fievel Goes West (1991) · We're Back! A Dinosaur's Story (1993) · Balto (1995) · The Imps of Nature (1996)
Big Idea Entertainment
Jonah: A VeggieTales Movie (2002) · The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything: A VeggieTales Movie (2008) · LarryBoy: A VeggieTales Movie (2020)
Animated Films Distributed by Universal
The Snow Queen (1959) · Pinocchio in Outer Space (1969) · Flying Phantom Ship (1971) · Elements of Light (1989) · Jetsons: The Movie (1990) · Doraemon: The Movie‎‎ (1995) · Maze of the Castle (1998) · The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle (2000) · Princess Arete (2001) · Momo (2001) · The Magic Roundabout (2005) · The Princess and the Pied Piper (2006) · Cinnamon the Movie (2007) · The Tale of Despereaux (2008) · Saturn (2013)
Animated Films Distributed by Focus Features
Zoe Tarr: The Drinking Detective‎ (2007) · Coraline (2009) · 9 (2009) · ParaNorman (2012) · The Boxtrolls (2014) · Ratchet & Clank (2016) · Kubo and the Two Strings (2016)