Dusty is a plane with high hopes-literally. Crop duster by trade, this single-prop plane sees himself soaring alongside his high-flying heroes in an international race. The fact that he's not really built for competitive racing doesn't deter him from pursuing his dream—but his fear of heights just might. With a little help from his friends—and a WWII vet with wisdom to spare—Dusty takes off on an adventure of a lifetime, going prop-to-prop with champions while daring to reach heights he never imagined possible.
Dusty is friendly, brave, curious, and courageous, although he was formerly afraid of heights.
In Planes, Dusty is first seen dreaming of out-running two fighter jets. He is introduced as a crop duster that works for Leadbottom, and dreams of competing in the Wings Around the Globe Rally. Hearing a horn signifying quitting time, Dusty radios his best friend Chug to get in his coaching gear as he practices air racing. However, running his engine at high speeds worns out his main oil seal, forcing him to land and seek repairs from his friend Dottie, who correctly suspects he'd been racing. Dusty tried to deny her accusations but then Chug rolls in and ruins it all. Dottie tells Dusty that he's not built to race, and starts listing all the possible mechanical failures that could happen to him, before acting out, saying he'd probably regret not listening to her before crashing into an orphanage. Though disturbed by her "vivid and specific" act, Dusty tells Dottie to join him and Chug for the qualifier.
While watching the Ten Top Crashes in Racing on TV, Chug suggests that they seek help from Skipper Riley, whom Sparky claims is a legendary naval flight instructor, though Dusty dismisses him due to the fact that he hasn't flown in decades, but reconsiders after seeing a clip of a plane exploding. However, upon knocking on Skipper's door, Dusty is flat out rejected twice.
Dusty and his friends later go to Lincoln, Nebraska for the Wings Around the Globe qualifier. When it comes to his turn, Dusty takes the callsign Strut Jetstream, but is ridiculed by everyone for being a crop duster. He manages to wow them all with his well-practiced flight maneuver, only to come in sixth place. Sadden that he didn't make it into the race, Dusty returns to his crop-dusting job. However, the next day, Roper comes to Propwash Junction and tells Dusty and his team that the plane ahead of him was using an illegal fuel additive, and was disqualified, so Dusty is now eligible to compete. Chug happily announces Dusty's achievement to Propwash. But Dusty then starts hesitating upon hearing Chug list all the dangers he would encounter. He is soon confronted in his own hanger by Skipper, who tells him he is over his head. He tries to talk him out of racing, but when Dusty explains he wants to prove he's more than just a crop duster, Skipper decides to mentor Dusty. While in the midst of his training, Dusty admits that he has a fear of heights. Despite this, Dusty works to improve his speed and agility.
Dusty then travels to New York City for the start of the race. After meeting his racing idols, most of which were mean to him for being "just a crop duster", including his new rival Ripslinger, Dusty befriended the eccentric El Chupacabra. He was told by Bulldog that it was a competition, and that every plane is in it for themselves.
During the first leg, Dusty flies low across the Atlantic Ocean unlike the rest of the racers, resulting in himself catching ice and arriving in Iceland very cold. During the second leg, Bulldog springs an oil leak, and the wind forces the oil into his eyes, blinding him. Dusty saves Bulldog by navigating him through the castle, earning the British plane's gratitude. However, Ripslinger mocks Dusty for his kind nature, saying that nice guys always finish last. While standing around in a bar depressed, Dusty is approached by his first ever fan, Franz, who suggests that he remove his sprayer to give himself more speed, an idea that El Chupacabra concurs. The removal of the sprayer allows Dusty to move up in the ranks.
At the next leg of the race, Dusty falls in love with Ishani, who gives him advice to fly low, so he doesn't get scared when flying high. Dusty follows Ishani's advice, finding a train tunnel, only to nearly die by being hit by an oncoming train. He then finds himself at the airport in Nepal, where he is told that he's in first place. While being interviewed by the press, Dusty notices Ishani, and goes to talk to her. He then realizes that Ishani had set him up, after seeing that she now has a Sky Slycer propeller that is made for Ripslinger's team.
Later in one of the legs, Ripslinger's henchplane Zed breaks off Dusty's antenna, and he gets lost at sea, but is rescued by two fighter jets, who help him land on the USS Dwight D. Flysenhower. While aboard, he spots the Jolly Wrenches' wall of fame, and learns that Skipper only flew one mission, which contradicts his previous reputation as a veteran of many battles. While getting his antenna replaced, he radios Skipper, who confesses that he did lie about his war record. Dusty is then forced to fly out with an oncoming storm.
However, Dusty becomes distracted, constantly thinking about Skipper, and ends up crashing into the ocean, but is eventually rescued. He is airlifted to Mexico, where all his friends had gathered to see him. At the hospital, Dusty is severely damaged, including having a broken wing, effectively grounding his chances to flying again. Skipper confesses to Dusty that he did indeed fly only one mission in the Pacific theatre, where his entire squad of trainees was killed in an attack on the Japanese Navy. Skipper was the only survivor, but torn by his guilt, he never trained another plane or flew again. He then asks Dusty if he would've gone to him for help if he knew the truth, only to be met with silence and disagreeing.
The next day, Dusty then sinks again into depression, admitting to Dottie that she was right all along, that he was never meant to race. Dottie then admits that she was wrong, telling him that the whole world knows he's a racer. Subsequently, the other kind racers, including El Chupacabra, Rochelle, Bulldog, and Ishani, donate new parts so he could race again. While Dottie repairs him, Chug watchs some of Ripslinger's races, and figures out that before every victory, Ripslinger turns to his right side so the cameras can get good photos of him.
As he gets ready to race, Ripslinger taunts that he's still just a farm boy. Unfazed, Dusty retorts that he's just afraid of being beaten by a crop duster. As the final leg begins, race officials rule that though Dusty didn't complete the last leg, he would be allowed to continue with a time penalty. Dusty soon begins to catch up to Ripslinger, but the Green Tornado and his henchplanes ambush him and attempt to ground him for good, but are thwarted by Skipper, who overcame his guilt and came to help Dusty. Dusty fights Ned and Zed, while Skipper takes on Ripslinger. After Ned and Zed gets stuck between each other in between two rocks, Dusty races to catch up with Ripslinger, only to lose power to his engine. He then overcomes his fear of heights to ride the jetstream and catch up. When it looks like Ripslinger would win, his ego gets the best of him, and he slows down for the cameras, enabling Dusty to pass him and win the race. Dusty is congratulated by his friends and fans, and Skipper thanks him for giving him the confidence to fly again.
At the end of the film, Skipper and Dusty are onboard the flight deck of the Flysenhower, and fly over the sea, back to Propwash Junction.
Having become famous for winning the Wings Around the Globe rally, Dusty starts off a racing career. After winning the Red Bulldozer race, Dusty returns to Propwash for the annual Corn Festival. Soon after, he goes out flying with Skipper but the excursion caused damage to his gearbox. With that particular model of gearbox now out of production and none available anywhere, Dottie fits a warning light to his control panel to ensure he doesn't damage his gearbox any further. No longer able to race and faced with the possibility of returning to his old job as a crop-duster, Dusty goes on a defiant flight and tests his limits. In doing so, Dusty exceeds his limits and makes a forced landing at Propwash Junction airport, causing a fire. He, Skipper, Chug and Mayday narrowly managed to put it out.
The next day, government inspector Ryker condemns the airport due to inadequate firefighting personnel. While Dottie and Sparky planned on refurbishing Mayday to meet Ryker's regulations, Propwash required a second firefighter to be reopened. Dusty then learned from Mayday about SEATs (Single Engine Air Tanker), inspiring him to get certified as a firefighter. Mayday instructs him to go to Piston Peak to look for Blade Ranger to get trained and certified. When he got to Piston Peak, he met his favorite fan Dipper, a heavy lift helicopter called Windlifter and an ex-military transport heavy plane Cabbie. He then found out their job is to go and fight fires and then Dusty got so interested that he went along with the planes. He then met Blade Ranger who told him to get out of the fire, but he didn't listen, getting sprayed with fire retardant.
After being hosed off back at base, Blade Ranger dismissed Dusty as a tourist before Windlifter identifies him as the new trainee. Maru then operated on him, giving him pontoons to firefight. Subsequently, Dusty began to struggle under Blade's tutelage, hesitating to increase power to his gearbox during training sessions. During one exercise, Dusty mistook a camp fire started by a few campers as a spot fire and extinguished it, prompting the RVs to send a complaint to Superintendent Cad Spinner. Cad drove into the base to pass on the complaint but then takes note of Dusty and invited him to his party at the Fusel Lodge. As Cad drove off, he remarked that Dusty is more famous than "Blazin' Blade". Later, the rest of the firefighters reveal to Dusty that Blade was once a television star.
As the firefighters took on a forest fire caused by overnight lightning, Dusty disregards Blade's orders, extinguishing a fire trapping Dynamite's team instead of letting Dipper do it. Back at base, Blade admonishes Dusty for nearly getting himself killed. Dipper tries to reassure Dusty that it's Blade's way of saying thanks.
Dusty then took Dipper, Windlifter and Maru to Cad's party at the Fusel Lodge. Upon entering Dusty was recognized by a fan, who had him record his voicemail, before Cad rudely shoves off the little forklift. Cad starts talking to Dusty before getting distracted by the arrival of Boat Reynolds. Dusty then gets formally introduced to Winnie and Harvey, and along with his colleagues, have a discussion about firefighting being a second job for him.
As a result of Cad's VIPs flying in too low, air eddies blew embers about, creating a larger fire, and thereby forcing the need for an evacuation. While on mission, Dusty again disobeys Blade and attempts to refill his pontoons, only to be caught in the rapids. Blade saved him from going down the big waterfall. Blade didn't understand why Dusty didn't listen to orders and Dusty replied that he can't drive fast because his gearbox is broken. Blade tells him that while life doesn't always go the way he expects, he can't quit otherwise he may lose a chance to save lives in the future. Dusty and Blade then took shelter in an abandoned mine as the fire continued to spread. Blade then used his body to shield Dusty from the flames, and is temporarily grounded for repairs. While Blade recovers, Maru reveals to Dusty of how Blade's co-star on CHoPs was killed during a stunt gone wrong on set that Blade was helpless to stop, so he decided to become a firefighter to save lives for real.
As the fire had spread to the main road and blocked off the evacuees, Windlifter takes de facto command and orders everyone to head out. Unfortunately, Cad had selfishly diverted the water supply to the lodge's rooftop sprinklers, forcing the firefighters to go with their pre-existing tanks. Dusty used his supply to extinguish the flames on a fallen trunk blocking the railroad. They then received a radio from Patch, informing them that Winnie and Harvey are trapped on a bridge in Augerin Canyon. With Windlifter's permission, Dusty heads off to save them. As Blade arrives on scene and used his hook to keep the two RVs from falling, Dusty puts his engine into the red zone as he climbs the falls to refill his pontoons, before diving down to extinguish the flames blocking the couple's exit, allowing the campers to escape just before the bridge collapses, but his overstressed gearbox fails completely and his engine stalls.
Dusty is airlifted back to base, where Maru tends to him for five days. When he wakes up, he learns that Maru had a better gearbox to allow full performance. Suddenly, he discovered that Jammer had replaced Cad as superintendent due to his misconduct during the crisis. Impressed at Dusty's skill and heroism, Blade certifies him as a firefighter.
Dusty then returned to Propwash Junction with his firefighting colleagues and becomes the airport's second firefighter, enabling Propwash's reopening, just in time for the Corn Festival. Chug then drives up, announcing that he was elected official Corn Colonel and asks if he could wear his hat to his race next Saturday. Dusty consents and asks Mayday if he could have time off. Dusty and his firefighting colleagues then perform an aerial show for all of Propwash.
Dusty appears as a playable character in both versions of Planes: The Video Game. His five chapters are Training Mode, Trouble in Propwash (cleaning up a damaged Propwash Junction), Himalayan Hero (helping out the local village), Ripslinger's Revenge (a race against Ripslinger wanting revenge while finding a sponsor in Dubai), and Blown out of Proportion (Dusty facing off against tornadoes).
Dusty has his Racing and Turbo skin exclusive to the console version, and his navy paint job and modifications, exclusive to the handheld versions.
Dusty is one of the playable characters in Planes: Fire & Rescue: The Video Game, in his firefighting paint job.
- Dusty's racing number is #7, which some say is a lucky number.
- Jon Cryer was originally set to play Dusty, but he dropped out. Instead, he was voiced by Dane Cook.
- Dusty's wingspan is 23 feet (7 meters).
- Dusty is inspired by the Air Tractor AT-502, Cessna and the PZL-Mielec M-18 Dromader. He has a horsepower of 680 1/2.
- Dusty's crop sprayer is a M5000 model.
- In his turbo design, Dusty is equipped with a four-bladed Sky Slycer Mark Five propeller and two T33 wings.
- His flying style is keeping it nice and low, but keeping his speed up.
- Orange and white on his plane looks good.
- ↑ ‘Planes’ Official Character Descriptions, Casting and Character Poses (Hi-Res)
- ↑ Disney’s ‘Planes’ Hi-Res Stills, Fun Facts and Activity Sheets
Characters: Dusty Crophopper | Skipper Riley | Sparky | Chug | Dottie | El Chupacabra | Ripslinger | Ishani | Bulldog | Rochelle | Ned and Zed | Bravo and Echo | Roper | Leadbottom | Fonzarelli | Franz | Colin Cowling | Little King | Arturo | Brent Mustangburger | Tsubasa | Harland | Tripp | Dwight D. Flysenhower | Tractors | Judge Davis | Jan Kowalski | Van Der Bird | Sun Wing | Antonio | Mayday | Joey Dundee | Miguel | Ryker | Yellow Bird | Gunnar Viking | Siddeley | Lil' Dipper | Blade Ranger | Windlifter | Cabbie | Dynamite | Pinecone | Avalanche | Blackout | Drip | Secretary of the Interior | Harvey and Winnie | Nick Loopin' Lopez | Cad Spinner | Maru | Ol' Jammer | Pulaski | Rake | Muir | Flap | Jigsaw Two | Jigsaw Three | Jigsaw Four | Lucas | Trev Diesel | André