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In the movie Despicable Me 3, when Gru refuses to go back to villainy again, his minions become angry with him. One minion named Mel, who was shown as a leader of the minions, started a heated discussion between himself and Gru, in minion's language. When that ended badly, Mel decided that the minions no longer need Gru, and they left Gru for the first time in their history. Then it showed Mel leading other minions to some other place.

Also in the film, Gru gets a call from minion named Mel before he goes down to announce to the minions that he and Lucy got fired from AVL.

Mel is never mentioned in any previous Despicable Me or Minions movie. He is mentioned in the third movie for the first time.

I have two questions:

  1. How did he become leader of the minions?

  2. Is there any significance of the name “Mel”? Is it used as a some kind of reference to either a historical event or an incident with a person?

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For the first question :

In the movie we can see that all minions are unionized. Mel is the new leader of the Minions, and under his leadership, for the first time ever, the Minions are forming a union.

Mel's first appearance is in this third Despicable Me film, and from what we see we can say that he is some part evil and he goes against the concept of forced labour.

Reference to here :

Minions are getting bored of their boss, Gru. With Gru becoming more of a hero than a villain. The minions will no longer go in search of a boss, as they have found one among themselves. The Despicable Me franchise introduces a new minion leader, Mel in this sequel.

Unlike Bob, Stuart and Kevin, who hang out with Gru and help him with his evil plans, Mel will stand on his own.

According to the franchise, Mel goes against the concept of forced labour. This sequel will project him as a revolutionary leader of the “Union of Minion” He will lead the minions, and show them that they have the evil DNA within themselves.


For your second question::

Minion Mel was inspired by Illumination head Chris Meledandri.
(Meledandri produced Despicable Me 3 with Janet Healy.)

The creator and designer of Minions Eric Guillon says:

I designed a birthday card for Chris Meledandri a few years ago, I drew Chris as a Minion, and I used the same design and haircut for Mel that I used on the birthday card.

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