TV & Movies

Soul Is The First Pixar Film To Feature A Black Lead

Jamie Foxx stars in the film.

Every Pixar film is an absolutely star-studded affair and their most recent offering, Soul, is no exception. But what's truly remarkable about the voice cast for Soul is that it's the most diverse one yet. According to the New York Times, Soul is the first Pixar film to feature a Black lead and a majority Black principal cast. And with actors like Jamie Foxx, Phylicia Rashad, and Angela Bassett voicing the lead roles — the cast is just as talented as it is diverse. Read on for more about the actors portraying these sure to be iconic characters.

Jamie Foxx as Joe
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The Academy Award winning actor plays protagonist and wayward soul Joe, who starts the film as a middle school band teacher just on the cusp of breaking out and making a name for himself as a jazz musician. That is, until an accident befalls him and he finds himself lost within the afterlife.

Tina Fey as 22
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The former Saturday Night Live star plays 22, a new soul that seems to already come pre-packed with existential dread. As Joe wanders the afterlife contemplating his own, well, life, he's also trying to prove to 22 that life has meaning.

Rachel House as Terry
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Terry is an accountant who counts all the souls who enter the afterlife. Naturally, Joe's presence fouls things up a bit for her. House has provided her voice talents for Disney before, voicing Gramma Tala in Moana (2016).

Alice Braga as Counselor Jerry
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Braga's character guides unborn souls, helping them find inspiration, direction, and meaning before they're born on Earth. According to IMDb, Braga has previously starred in The New Mutants (2020), Elysium (2013), and I Am Legend (2007). She's also co-starring in the forthcoming Suicide Squad (2021) as SolSoria.

Richard Ayoade as Counselor Jerry

Just like the other counselors, Ayoade's character provides guidance to souls yet-to-be-born. Ayoade is perhaps most well-known for his role as Maurice Moss in The IT Crowd. Recently, he's also starred as Zero in The Mandalorian.

Graham Norton as Moonwind
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A sign twirler who helps rescue lost souls, Moonwind helps Joe along his path in the afterlife. Norton is the host of the long-running primetime celebrity chat show The Graham Norton Show.

Phylicia Rashad as Libba
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The Cosby Show's Rashad plays Joe's mother, whom he runs into in the afterlife. The two have a complicated relationship because when Joe was a child, Libba discouraged him from pursuing music as a career, trying to nudge him to more practical, stable job paths.

Donnell Rawlings as Dez
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Dez is Joe's barber, and meets 22 under some unusual circumstances. Rawlings has appeared in various film and television projects, most notably on The Wire and The Chappelle Show.

Questlove as Curley
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The Roots drummer plays a former student of Joe's and is a drummer for the band Joe auditions for during the film.

Angela Bassett as Dorothea Williams

Black Panther's Bassett plays Dorothea, the leader of a jazz group that Joe auditions to join at the beginning of the film. But tragedy strikes almost immediately after he makes the cut.