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Oh, don't worry. Whales don't eat clownfish. They eat krill.
Dory, comforting Marlin as the whale approaches to swallow the unaware duo whole

The Whale is a minor character and location from Disney/Pixar's 2003 animated film, Finding Nemo.

Background

This whale is the largest character in the film. Upon leaving the EAC, Marlin and Dory get trapped inside the mouth of a blue whale after swimming into its path. Marlin reluctantly trusts Dory, who tries to speak whale, and allows himself to be ejected from the whale's blowhole at the risk of being eaten. Fortunately, they are carried to Sydney Harbour in the process.

Appearances

Finding Nemo

In Finding Nemo, the whale is first seen from a distance before he reveals how large he is. Dory starts speaking whale to try and ask him if he can help them find Nemo, but the whale ends up swimming away. But then slowly (and rather ominously) he swims up behind Marlin and Dory (also scaring some krill, who tell the two fish to swim away), and swallows Marlin and Dory whole. Later, while Marlin struggles to get out, Dory tries to speak to the whale again. In reaction, the whale ejects the two fish from his blowhole at a convenient location which happens to be Sydney. The whale theoretically understood Dory and helped her and Marlin get to their destination.

World of Color

The whale appears in the show's version of the sequence of Dory speaking whale and is the lead-in to the Pines of Rome sequence.

Finding Nemo (video game)

The whale appears in the Whale Chase level as Marlin and Dory escape his body by travelling through it.

Trivia

  • One of Finding Nemo's crew members, head shader Robin Cooper, took photos inside a dead, beached gray whale in order to portray the inside of the whale accurately. In addition, while whales' mouths and blowholes aren't connected, director Andrew Stanton had to "defy reality" in order to move the plot, as the other ways that Marlin and Dory could escape from the whale weren't appetizing. [1]
  • Blue whales have black baleen plates and tend to be larger. And while the whale has a uvula hanging above his soft palate, whales don't have uvulas at all. (However, this was an intentional mistake by the filmmakers, as they felt audiences would see that Marlin and Dory were inside the whale's mouth if it had a uvula as "stage dressing.") [2]

Anatomical features

As a majority of the scenes that the whale appears in the film take place inside his mouth and throat, much of the whale's anatomy is seen in the film through Marlin and Dory's eyes, such as:

Finding nemo whale baleen

  • First, there is the whale's baleen, which in real life filters water out of the whale's mouth, trapping the krill inside [3], is shown in the film being rammed desperately by Marlin as he attempts to escape form the clutches of the whale's mouth.

Finding nemo whale tongue 2

  • Second, there is the whale's gigantic tongue, which in real life pushes water out of the mouth's baleen plates before being used as an aid to swallow krill [4], is mainly Marlin and Dory's final place of refuge inside the whale in the film, when Marlin believes they will get eaten alive and die if they let go of it.

Finding nemo non circled whale uvula

  • And finally, the whale's massive uvula, which as mentioned in the trivia, is not a part of a blue whale's mouth in real life, acts in the film as a sort of chandelier-like structure to give the whale's otherwise gaping and vast mouth a touch of decoration and class. It dangles back and forth like a pendulum near the back of the whale's throat as Marlin, Dory, and the water inside the whale's mouth is moved around and swallowed.

Gallery

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Finding Nemo - Logo
Media
Finding Nemo/Soundtrack/Video GameFinding Dory/Soundtrack/Just Keep SwimmingDisney INFINITY: 3.0 EditionLittle Golden BookDisney's Wonderful World of ReadingBig Golden BookThe Art of Finding Nemo
Disney Parks
Disney's Art of Animation ResortDisney's Explorers LodgeCrush's CoasterDisney Animation BuildingFinding Nemo Submarine VoyageIt's a Small WorldNemo & Friends SeaRiderThe Seas with Nemo & FriendsTurtle Talk with Crush

Entertainment: Fantasmic!Finding Nemo: The MusicalPixar Playtime PalsSummer Blast
Parade: Disney Stars on ParadeHappiness is Here ParadeMickey's Storybook ExpressMickey's WaterWorksPaint The Night ParadePixar Play ParadeTokyo Disneyland Electrical Parade: DreamLights
Firework: Disneyland ForeverIgnite the Dream: A Nighttime Spectacular of Magic and LightTree of Life AwakensWorld of Color

Characters
Finding Nemo: NemoMarlinCoralDoryPearlTadSheldonKathyMr. RayBruceAnchorChumGillPeachBloatBubblesDebGurgleJacquesNigelCrushSquirtGeraldAustralian Prime MinisterPhilipDarlaBarracudaBlennyAnglerfishSeagullsMoonfishJellyfishWhaleKrillCrabs

Finding Dory: JennyCharlieBaileyDestinyHankFluke and RudderGeraldBeckyOttersGiant SquidStan

Locations
AustraliaGreat Barrier ReefSydney HarbourMarine Life InstituteWhale*Gerald*
  • Note: The Whale and Gerald are technically characters and locations, as scenes in the film are set both inside and outside their bodies (with Marlin and Dory being trapped inside both of their mouths at one point).
Objects
AquaScum 2003Pixar BallPizza Planet truck
Songs
Beyond the SeaUnforgettableWhat a Wonderful WorldIn The Big Blue WorldGo With the Flow
See Also
The Science Behind PixarPixar in a Box