Last month I received an amazing Disney invite to visit Charlotte, North Carolina in honor of Cars 3 releasing on Digital HD, Blu-ray and DVD! The invitation included a variety of bucket list experiences, which I'll be covering in the coming weeks.
Lea DeLaria is a force of nature, and she lights up the room when she walks in. This was especially true at the Cars 3 premiere in June:
But I absolutely experienced it firsthand again for this interview:
She actually walked into the room saying, I'm so excited! I love you guys. You're always so much fun!
Lea Delaria is featured in her very own short, Miss Fritter's Racing Skool, that's available in the bonus features with Cars 3!
When asked about how she found out about Miss Fritter's Racing Skool, she had a lot to say! Then we just kept going until the interview was over.
Q: When did you get the call that there was going to be a short for Miss Fritter?
That was around June (2016). The movie hadn't been released yet, and when they called to say, ‘we have this idea to do a DVD extra' that was exciting!
So then we went in and recorded it. I mean, making any Pixar movie, I imagine, is probably very akin to what my experience has been, and my experience has been awesome and fun-loving. I mean, what a great place to work.
Honestly, if this acting thing doesn't work out for me I'm going to Pixar! It's just so kind and everybody's having a good time.
I think my work on Miss Fritter's Driving Skool was done in about two hours. But, because you're mommy bloggers, I know you're going to love this…
So we recorded it at Oprah's studio, so I was in OWN studio and I was running around because I love her. So everything about that day was just so great.
So Pixar sent the short to us two or three weeks ago. I swear to you we sat in the office and watched it like three or four times in a row, just laughing and laughing.
Q: What do you prefer: on screen or voice acting? What are the differences?
I prefer…[laughing] whatever's going to pay my rent and put food in my mouth.
I like how big voice acting can be. I'm gonna say it, I was in Saved By the Bell: The New Class, so I used to do Saturday morning television. When you do that, you get to be really big.
But television has turned into…especially with single camera shoots like Orange is the New Black, you have to be real. You have to be honest, you have to sit there, and that's not my personality. I'm kind of big.
What I like about voice acting is that I can make the big choices that I would make on stage. When I do a musical, I'm making those big choices all the time. It's acceptable there. Those are fun choices.
Q: What did you think of Miss Fritter when they came to you with that character?
They made a little shirt for me of the original drawing of Miss Fritter. I was like, “of course you came to me for this; look at her!”
When I saw the character and knew she was demolition derby, I kind of knew exactly who she was. I knew, if Miss Fritter was anybody, it's definitely me.
Q: Were you able to tell producers or directors about making a movie more openly LGBT oriented?
No, I never said a word about it it. I love that they [Pixar] out of the blue, put a rainbow bumper sticker on her. I had no clue until I was told that it was there. That was a win-win for everyone.
Pixar is open to everything. It's one of the good companies. So is Disney. I think they're doing a tremendous job, and more companies should look at them, especially in regards to my community. They've always stood tall.
Q: is there a role you're just dying to grab ahold of?
Lea DeLaria: I'm still waiting for somebody to write that musical for me.
I've actually just had someone write a play for me, so I'll probably be doing that off Broadway next fall. It's called Innocence, written by Aaron Mark.
It's an amazing play, but I'm still waiting for somebody to write that musical. I want that. I want it. I'm hoping it will happen sometime.
Q: How psyched were you to see the ending of Cars 3 with Cruz Ramierez?
Wasn't that the best part of the movie?
As I learned more and more about the story, I said, This is a feminist movie. This is a girl power movie. This is a movie that's teaching young girls that they can live their dreams and be whatever they want to be, and we don't have that many movies that that say that to little girls. I thought it was amazing.
Cars 3 is just good message after good message.
Q: Who's your biggest inspiration?
It's people that I feel have made a difference, from politics to entertainment.
Lucille Ball is someone that I admire greatly as a woman who was able to start her own studio and had this huge sitcom. And she's not afraid of her talent.
I feel the same way about Barbara Streisand and Lily Tomlin when it comes to that kind of stuff.
Harvey Milk I someone I greatly admire and thank. These are people that make a difference.
Then you go right to The Rat Pack. I'm just from that school where if you have talent and you have a lot of things you can do, you should do all of them.
If people can do things, let them do things. Why do we stand in people's way and tell them you can't do that. That's crazy. People should be encouraged to be the best person they are.
Q: Do you have words of inspiration for young girls?
First of all, you're absolutely perfect as you are. You don't have to do anything that you don't want to do. You don't have to say anything that you don't want to say. If you feel like you want to say something, when you know what you want to say, you'll say it.
Kids are always pushed to do everything. I just want to tell them to do things in your own time and in your own way, and that's good enough.
Q: In the movie we see a lot with Cruz being put down and people told her she couldn't do things. Did you ever feel the way she felt?
Lea DeLaria: Look at me. My entire life. Always. Everyone from the nuns in school onward. I've heard nothing my entire life except, you cant do that. Which just makes me want to do it more.
But I was blessed with amazing parents who encouraged all us to be who we were and to speak our mind and to think for ourselve and to not be afraid of saying what you think.
My entire life all I've ever been told is “you can't do that.” Watch me.
That's what I like about this movie. This is something we're teaching young girls.
See my other Cars 3 content:
- Cars 3 Gift Guide: The best Cars 3 toys and books.
- Cars 3 Review: All about the characters and music in Cars 3.
- Cars 3 cast interview: Humor and wisdom from Owen Wilson, Cristela Alonzo, Kerry Washington and Armie Hammer.
- The director and producer: A Cars 3 Interview with Brian Fee and Kevin Reher.
- An unbelievable Disneyland night at the Cars 3 premiere.
- Get the newest printable Cars 3 activity sheets
- Announcing the #Cars3Event Disney press junket.
View the promo for Miss Fritter's Racing Skool with Cars 3 trailer:
Stay on top of all the Cars 3 news at these links: