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He doesn't look like magic to me.
~ Skellig meeting Dumbo in person.

Neils Skellig is the secondary antagonist of the 2019 Disney live-action/fantasy film Dumbo. He is V.A. Vandevere's right-hand man of the amusement park, Dreamland.

He was portrayed by Joseph Gatt, who also played Grundroth in Thor.

Biography

Employing the Medici Circus

Skellig first appeared arriving to the Medici Brothers' Circus with Vandavere due to the latter hearing about the circus' baby elephant Dumbo being capable of flying with his large ears. To that end, Vandavere formed a deal with the circus ringmaster Max Medici: the latter would become Vandevere's partner and the circus' troupe would be employed to perform at Dreamland.

During Dumbo’s debut performance at Dreamland, the performance went wrong due to a lack of a safety net, which almost killed Dumbo and Vandavere's star aerialist Colette Merchant. Dumbo soon learned that his mother Mrs. Jumbo is at a separate exhibit in Dreamland (as she was sold away by Medici to prevent a public relations problem following the death of an abusive handler named Rufus Sorghum). Due to the trauma of being separated from his mother, Dumbo flies out of the circus ring to reunite with his mother, which disappointed the audience. Upon witnessing this, Vandavere orders Skellig and his other security guards to separate Dumbo from his mother. One of the troupe members Holt Farrier tried to object over this (knowing that Dumbo misses his mother), but Skellig furiously silences him.

Plotting To Kill Mrs. Jumbo

Because of the disappointing performance, Vandavere believes that Mrs. Jumbo is being a distraction, so he decides to get rid of her immediately to have Dumbo for himself. When Holt and Colette furiously confronted Vandavere for this and his disregard of a safety net, Skellig mocks Holt by calling him an 'elephant man' while Vandavere stated that he doesn't allow safety nets during real performances. Per Vandavere's orders, Skellig arranges a transport for Mrs. Jumbo for her termination during Dumbo's next performance while Vandavere forces Medici to fire his entire troupe to cover his tracks, much to Medici's distraught.

However, Holt and the troupe refused to accept this and decided to free both Mrs. Jumbo and Dumbo from captivity; even Colette and Vandavere's butler Sotheby tagged along as they are disgusted by Vandavere's behavior. While Vandavere is busy overseeing Dumbo's new performance, little did he know that Colette, Holt and the troupe are utilizing their talents to gain hold of the truck containing Mrs. Jumbo so that they can transport her to the docks away from Vandavere's grasp. When Skellig found out about this, he informed Vandavere, who furiously ordered his park to be locked down so that the troupe won't escape.

When Skellig managed to catch Holt's kids Joe and Millie, Vandavere interrogated them about their father's presence, but he learned too late that Medici allowed Holt to open up a hole in the tent to allow Colette and Dumbo to fly out, which distracted him and Skellig long enough to allow the kids to escape. Skellig furiously chased the kids to the around the park while Colette and Dumbo fly over to the park's systems tower, when they turned off all the lights and security systems to allow the troupe to escape with Mrs. Jumbo from the park. Vandavere tried to set the system back on, only to accidentally cause a fire that engulfs the entire park, much to Skellig's dismay.

Defeat

As all of the attendants are forced to leave the burning park, Skellig managed to catch the kids again, but Holt arrived to the rescue by tying up Skellig's legs and leaving him to be dragged away by an escaping horse from the burning park, much to Skellig's dismay.

It is unknown what happened to Skellig afterwards, but it can be implied that he was either dragged by the escaping horse to his death or that he managed to get his legs untangled to escape while Dumbo and his mother were transported on a ship to a native jungle in India for safety.

Trivia

  • Before the film was released, there were rumors that Skellig was to be portrayed as a poacher, but that wasn't the case when he was revealed to be a direct employee of Dreamland.

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