Despicable Me: Minion Translator

In an effort to engage users beyond traditional film experiences, Best Buy Movie Mode was a daring and innovative [mobile + movie theater] experience in partnership with Universal Studios and director Chris Meledandri during the release of Despicable Me.

  • Role Inventor (patented idea) and executive producer
  • For Universal Studios, Best Buy, Crispin Porter + Bogusky
  • Type Mobile app + In-theater Experience

Utilizing a proprietary digital signal processing algorithm contained within a mobile app and high-frequency embedded audio cues in the movie track, we created a scenario where audiences could read “translated” Minion speak on the phone during the movie vignettes surrounding the end credits.

A small team of us worked very closely with the human interface technology lab group within the research institute at the University of Canterbury, New Zealand to create a system that would accommodate such a complicated request. I’m proud to be listed as an inventor on the patent.

Selfishly, this may be one of my all time favorite projects:

I spent a few trips at Skywalker Ranch to be a part of a mission to tie a mobile app, a mainstream animated blockbuster, and human interfacing technology together into one project. Spectacular fun! (Thank you legendary Dennis Leonard at SkySound.)

And of course, honored to have the support and daring of talented director Chris Meledandri (Ice Age, Despicable Me) as a main supporter of the project.