|“||I wanna find this guy. I wanna know everything about him. I wanna know where he lives, where he sleeps. He pops a gill, I wanna know about it: Who is the Sharkslayer?!||„|
|~ Lino vowing to find the Sharkslayer and avenge Frankie's death.|
Donald Edward "Don" Lino is the main antagonist of DreamWorks' 9th full-length animated feature film Shark Tale. He is the pompous leader of the Great White sharks, Luca's boss, Lola's employer, and Lenny and Frankie's father.
Lino wants Lenny and Frankie (whom he treats like his henchmen) to take over the business and run it together and is infuriated when Oscar gets in the way. In the end, he redeemed himself, after Oscar confesses that he is not a "Sharkslayer" and that it was an anchor that had killed Frankie. He then strongly urges Don Lino not to prejudge people before he knows them properly and to not make the mistake he made in prejudging his wealth, so Don Lino and Lenny reconcile.
He was voiced by Robert De Niro, who also played Vito Corleone in The Godfather Part II, Travis Bickle in Taxi Driver, Jake LaMotta in Raging Bull, David "Noodles" Aaronson in Once Upon a Time in America, Louis Cyphre in Angel Heart, Al Capone in The Untouchables, Jimmy Conway in Goodfellas, Max Cady in Cape Fear, Dwight Hansen in This Boy's Life, Frankenstein's Monster in Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, Neil McCauley in Heat, Gil Renard in The Fan, Ace Rothstein in Casino, Louis Gara in Jackie Brown, Fearless Leader in The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle, David Callaway in Hide and Seek, and Senator John McLaughlin in Machete. In the film's videogame adaptation, he was voiced by Jim Meskimen.
Don Lino is first seen feeding his piranhas in his home, which is a wreck of an old sunken Ocean Liner, and talking to Sykes to prepare his sons Lenny and Frankie to run the reef saying that "today is that day". However, Sykes laughs at Lino and says that Frankie he understands, but Lenny cannot be serious; however, Lino says that he is "dead serious" and said that it takes muscles to run things, he tells Sykes that his youngest son, Lenny "he's got the brains" and said that it's something special. When Sykes tells Lino that Lenny is no killer, Lino, frustrated, orders Sykes fired, as well and demands him to start paying him so nothing happens to the Whale Wash.
Later at a restaurant, Lino questions Lenny over his gentle behavior and tells him that in order to succeed him as head of the Reef, his son has to be an aggressive shark like Frankie. Spotting live shrimp cocktail, Lino grabs one and insists that Lenny eats it. Lenny ultimately refuses and instead releases all the shrimp out the window. Furious and embarrassed, Lino orders Frankie to show Lenny the ropes and tells Lenny that he's "gonna learn how to be a Shark! Whether you like it or not.".
When he hears that Frankie was killed, and Lenny had gone missing Lino is devastated. During Frankie's funeral, Don Feinberg tells him about the Sharkslayer. Lino asks where he can find the Sharkslayer to which Feinberg responds "He's from the Southside Reef. That's all we could dig up." Lino nonetheless thanks Feinberg for his help. As Feinberg leaves, Lino vows revenge on finding out who the Sharkslayer is to avenge Frankie's death.
Lini sends his goons to Southside to take down Oscar, but Oscar easily scares them off.
Later, Lola informs him about Oscar's feelings for Angie, convincing him that Angie is the Sharkslayer's weakness. So she arranges Lino to kidnap Angie for Oscar's obedience. At the sitdown, Lino reveals Angie to Oscar tied up and gagged and threatens to eat her if he doesn't comply. Oscar insists he doesn't know Angie, but Lola quickly calls him out on his bluffing. Lino then growls to Oscar that "Your sharkslayin' days are over! And there ain't nothin' you can do about it. " In response, Oscar has Lenny (disguised as a dolphin) grab Angie and eat her on the spot (grabbing her in her mouth, but not swallowing), but Lenny begins choking and vomits Angie out. Lenny's disgust in fish causes Lino to recognize his youngest son. Lenny in defeat sheds his dolphin disguise. Lino, however, is embarrassed by the situation and accuses Lenny of "taking sides against the family". When Oscar tries to defend Lenny, Lino's sadness quickly turns to fury, and he begins to chase Oscar, snapping his jaws at him.
As Oscar swims out of a porthole, Edward gets stuck. He then growls "You're gonna regret the day you became the Sharkslayer!". Suddenly the shrimp (the one Lino tried to force Lenny to eat) Pops out of another porthole and gets his revenge on Lino by having his swarm attack Lino's face. But as Oscar swims off, Lino's rage keeps him going.
Oscar leads Lino towards the Whale Wash. He pulls down a lever to trap him into a whale clasping device, only to discover that he trapped Lenny by mistake. Lino continues to chase Oscar. Eventually, Oscar subdues Lino by trapping him into another machine, leaving him face to face with Lenny.
However, Oscar couldn't take a false reputation any longer, so he finally confessed that he lied about being a Sharkslayer and that Frankie was accidentally killed by an anchor. Upon hearing this, a confused Lino asks Lenny why he ran away in the first place even when he knew what Oscar was saying was true the whole time, to which Lenny responded that he ran away because Lino never accepted him for who he was and how he pushed him to be like Frankie. Oscar gives Lino a speech of how everybody accepts Lenny because of his good behavior, even Oscar himself admits that he considers Lenny a good friend because of it, asking Lino why he cannot do the same. Oscar also admits that he made a mistake prejudicing his wealth and tells Lino not to make the same mistake he made. Feeling remorseful for his own actions and realizing that Oscar is right, Lino asks Oscar to free him. After Oscar does so, Lino reconciles with Lenny by apologizing for his behavior, saying that he accepts him for who he is, whether he eats meat or not. Lino thanks Oscar for straightening things out and agrees to form a peace between the reef and the mob, much to everyone's delight.
In the end, Lino, Lenny, and their mob visit the Whale Wash. Sykes tries to give Lino a fin-shake telling him he has to snap his fin. Lino insists that he is snapping his fins. Sykes retorts "It's alright a lot of great whites can't do it yo!" Then Sykes keeps saying "yo! yo yo" repeatedly until Lino gets annoyed and threatens Sykes "You say yo one more time, and I'm gonna yo you!", Sykes sheepishly apologizes for this.
Lino is cruel, vicious, aggressive and bloodthirsty, and unlike his merciful, sympathetic, and compassionate son named Lenny, he has no qualms about killing. He is also extremely vengeful, unpleasant and vituperative, so he tries to get revenge on Oscar for killing Frankie. However, when Oscar explained the true circumstances behind Frankie's death, Lino shows a sense of remorse as he sees that he started a feud against Oscar for nothing. With that in mind, Lino apologizes for his actions and became friends with Oscar, promising that neither he nor his sharks would attack the reef again.
Though he is a fierce, quarrelsome and short-tempered shark, Lino does show a softer and more caring side, and he was devastated by Frankie's death. Though he was fed up with Lenny's refusal to kill anything, Lino loved Lenny very much and by the end of the film, he finally accepts Lenny for who he was by saying "I love you, son. No matter what you eat or how you dress.". Like most of the other characters in the movie, Lino shows that he can be easily duped despite being a feared mob boss. He never questions how Oscar, a mere fish, could kill Frankie. This is further proof that he is pretty gullible despite his ruthless nature.
Lino is a muscular and very strong great white with a mole on his right cheek, just like his voice actor Robert De Niro. Lino has light blue eyes.
|“||Hey, Luca... Get Sykes. He knows that Reef better than anybody. I want to know all about this guy. I want to know what he does. I want to know where he eats. I want to know where he sleeps. He pops a gill, I want to know about it. Who is the Sharkslayer?!||„|
|~ Lino to Luca.|
|“||My Lenny is a killer, you hear me? A cold-blooded killer! Look at him!||„|
|~ Lino about Lenny.|
|“||That's it! That's it! You are OUT! (Sykes: What? (puffs up nervously) What do you mean I'm out?) You're fired! (hits Sykes and the latter lands on the painting of Rose) And on top of that, you are gonna have to start paying me! (Sykes: For what?) So nothing happens to that little whale wash of yours.||„|
|~ Lino firing Sykes and having him pay him so nothing happens to the whale wash.|
|“||I'm not asking you anymore. I'm telling you EAT IT! (Shrimp: No. Have mercy!) (Lenny: Pop, Please!) EAT! (Shrimp: No eat!) (Lenny: What do you - no!) Son, eat the shrimp! (Lenny: No! Please!) Lenny! EAT! EAT! EAT! EAT! EAT! (Lenny: Don't! Pop!) (Various shrimps: NO! NO! NO! NO! NOOOO!!!) (Lenny: Put the shrimp down!!)||„|
|~ Lino forcing Lenny to eat the shrimp before the latter tells him to stop and allowing the shrimp to escape|
|“||(Oscar: Hello?) "Shut up?" "Shut up?!" You don't tell ME "shut up", I tell YOU "shut up!" (Someone calls on another line) What? Hello? (Luca: Yeah, howya doin'? Lemme have a pie with everything on it. Anchovies, meatballs, mushrooms...) Luca! (Luca: Oh, hi, Boss. What are you doin' workin' at a pizza joint?) GET OFF THE PHONE! (Luca: But I'm hungry!) Ugh! My guys are comin' for you, Sharkslayer! They're gonna tear you FIN FROM FIN!||„|
|~ Lino threatens Oscar.|
|“||Come here you. I love you son. No matter what you eat, or how you dress.||„|
|~ Lino apologizing to Lenny for his behavior|
- Lino's mole on his right cheek is similar to his voice actor Robert De Niro.
- Lino is the second main antagonist of a DreamWorks Animation film to be reformed, right after The Colonel from Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron.
- Lino's wife is only seen once (sobbing on his father's left shoulder during Frankie's funeral ceremony).
- Liam Neeson, Kevin Spacey, Andy Garcia, Bryan Cranston, Kirk Douglas, Woody Harrelson, Jeff Daniels, Bill Nighy, John Malkovich, Dean Winters, Julian McMahon, Warren Beatty, Anthony Hopkins, Christopher Lloyd, Gerard Butler, Rupert Everett, Josh Brolin, Nick Nolte, Charles Dance, Jack Nicholson, Gene Hackman, Stephen Lang, Michael Caine, Benjamin Bratt, Hal Landon Jr., William Shatner, Judd Hirsch, Kevin Dunn, David Denman, Bill Pullman, Billy Zane, Thomas Haden Church & Peter Greene all auditioned for the role of Don Lino before Robert De Niro was chosen to voice the character.
- He has a same comment as the Ghostly Trio, Don Lino force Lenny to eat some fish, the Ghostly Trios forced Casper to Scare people.
- Despite being the main antagonist, he only has a few minutes of screen-time. On the other hand, his dismissal of Lenny not wanting to eat fish did kick-start the events that led to Frankie's death.
- Robert De Niro was offered for the role of Hopper in Disney/Pixar's A Bug's Life and Rameses in DreamWorks' The Prince of Egypt, but he turned down both of the offers. Interestingly, he accepted the offer to voice Don Lino and Shark Tale is a DreamWorks film. In fact, Kevin Spacey was cast as the voice of Hopper while Ralph Fiennes was cast as the voice of Rameses.
- He is the first animated character to be voiced by Robert De Niro.
- His real age is unknown, but the actor providing his voice was around 61 years old at the time.
- James Gandolfini was originally going to be the voice actor for Don Lino, but dropped out of the film for unexplained reasons.