Blue is the colour... film is the game

It won the Best Movie and Best Director awards at the Golden Globes. Yet James Cameron's 'Avatar' is not the first film to make azure folk cool. Here's the top 10 blue-movie characters who kick the Na'vi's turquoise butts


The Blue Meanies

Far from being peace-loving forest dwellers like Avatar's Na'vi, the Blue Meanies were ruthless dictators who captured Pepperland and banned music. Fortunately The Beatles saved the day in their 1968 hit Yellow Submarine, which won no Golden Globes, but was nominated for a Grammy.

Max Rebo

Not all blue aliens are bean-eating hippies with attractive stripy skin and saucy tails. Max Rebo is the star of Jabba the Hut's in-house band in Return of the Jedi, and is an amoral glutton. More likely to eat the fruit of the Tree of Voices than commune with it; he makes those invading Americans look thoughtful.

Dory

A heart-warming story of filial love, environmental protection and, um, never trusting dentists, Finding Nemo is the bestselling DVD of all time – until someone invents a TV that can broadcast in 3D. Dory, the big blue heroine, is voiced by Ellen DeGeneres, making her even more cool than your average blue fish.

Gonzo

Lover, trumpet player, friend of chickens... The Muppets' Gonzo, aka Gonzo the Great, was a rhapsody in blue when the Na'vi were merely a twinkle in the Tree of Souls. He may not be able to ride dragons, but he will now eat a rubber tyre to the music of "The Flight of the Bumblebee". Music, maestro!

Aladdin

Long before Avatar made $1bn faster than any other film, Walt Disney's blue period took Aladdin to No 1. The 1992 film altered the genie from A Thousand and One Nights in only two major ways – by making him blue, and by giving him the voice of Robin Williams.

The Smurfs

Clearly an early prototype of the Na'vi, Hanna-Barbera's Smurfs were a benign blue species that lived in a wood, respected nature and took care of each other's social and domestic needs. Like the Na'vi, they had their own language, in which random words were replaced with "smurf". All that remained was to stretch the little fellas and Baftas, here we come.

Sonic the Hedgehog

Back in the days when 3D glasses were red and green, and the Iraq war was a conflict about Kuwait, Sonic the Hedgehog was regarded as the height of gaming technology. Human invaders mining unobtanium would be no match for him, since he has seen off the evil genius Dr Ivo "Eggman" Robotnik many times over.

Violet Beauregarde

A pre- Avatar lesson in American greed and over-consumption, Violet Beauregarde was the gum-chewing brat in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. She gets her comeuppance when she chews Willy Wonka's three-course-meal-flavour gum, and turns into a giant blueberry. Watch out, you evil unobtanium miners.

Thomas the Tank Engine

Though arguably less lithe and sexy than the smug members of the Na'vi, Thomas is nonetheless a Really Useful Engine. Avatar has Sigourney Weaver, but Thomas the Tank Engine has Ringo Starr, making the former Beatle responsible for two of the greatest blue movies of all time (see Yellow Submarine, above).

Bella, the Tweenies

Finally, a blue heroine who's even more smug and irritating than Princess Neytiri, the beautiful huntress of the Na'vi Omaticaya clan. Bella, one of the Tweenies, plays the harp, violin, double bass viola, cello and piano, and she sings. A lot. Don't get the theme tune stuck in your head; it's worse than sitting through Avatar's 162 minutes.

Arts and Entertainment
Legendary blues and rock singer Joe Cocker has died of lung cancer, his management team as confirmed. He was 70
music The singer has died aged 70
Arts and Entertainment
Maisie Williams looks concerned as Arya Stark
tv
Arts and Entertainment
photography Incredible images show London's skyline from its highest points
Arts and Entertainment
'Silent Night' last topped Classic FM's favourite Christmas carol poll in 2002
classical
Arts and Entertainment
Caroline Flack became the tenth winner of Strictly Come Dancing
tv 'Absolutely phenomenal' Xtra Factor presenter wins Strictly Come Dancing final
PROMOTED VIDEO
Arts and Entertainment
Rhys says: 'I'm not playing it for laughs, but I have learnt that if you fall over on stage, people can enjoy that as much as an amazing guitar solo'
musicGruff Rhys on his rock odyssey, and the trouble with independence
Arts and Entertainment
Krysia and Daniel (Hand out press photograph provided by Sally Richardson)
How do today's composers answer the challenge of the classical giant?
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
News
Shenaz Treasurywala
film
News
tv
Arts and Entertainment
Jason Watkins as Christopher Jefferies
tv
Arts and Entertainment
Star Wars Director JJ Abrams: key character's names have been revealed
film
Arts and Entertainment
Pharrell Williams won two BBC Music Awards for Best Song and International Artist
music
Arts and Entertainment
Mark, Katie and Sanjay in The Apprentice boardroom
TV
Arts and Entertainment

Film The critics but sneer but these unfashionable festive films are our favourites

Arts and Entertainment
Frances O'Connor and James Nesbitt in 'The Missing'

TV We're so close to knowing what happened to Oliver Hughes, but a last-minute bluff crushes expectations

Arts and Entertainment
Joey Essex will be hitting the slopes for series two of The Jump

TV

Who is taking the plunge?
Arts and Entertainment
Katy Perry as an Ancient Egyptian princess in her latest music video for 'Dark Horse'

music
Arts and Entertainment
Dame Judi Dench, as M in Skyfall

film
Arts and Entertainment
Morrissey, 1988

TV
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

    'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

    Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
    Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

    Ed Balls interview

    'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
    He's behind you, dude!

    US stars in UK panto

    From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
    Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

    Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

    What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
    Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

    Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

    Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
    Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

    Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

    Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
    Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

    Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

    Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
    Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

    Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

    Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
    Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

    Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

    Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
    Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

    Autism-friendly theatre

    Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
    The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

    The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

    Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
    From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

    Panto dames: before and after

    From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
    Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

    Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

    Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
    Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

    Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

    Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
    The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

    The man who hunts giants

    A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there