Madagascar: Escape to Africa is a hit with parents and kids! One of my favorite characters in the movie was Nana, the little old lady who is the animals' worst nightmare. Elisa Gabrielli is the voice of the hysterical Nana. She said she was inspired to take the role because of her own Nana. Elisa's story touched me this holiday, as I think of some of the people I miss!
Elisa's inspiration for Nana's voice came from her own grandmother, who helped raise her. Her grandma was an immigrant from Eastern Europe who was tiny, feisty and very funny. Elisa had a blast doing the voice but she also had a purpose:
There is a real stigma attached to old age in our culture. My grandmother was very strong and is one of my role models. The character was a good way to honor my own Nana.
Elisa's grandmother died last year. Her performance in the movie brought laughter and joy to the audience. A perfect gift for a wonderful woman.
Nana reminds me of my grandma Mimi. My dad's mother was not even 5 feet tall, and she was a real pistol. Did you have a Nana in your life? Do you still have someone like Nana in your life?