Villain Overview

Hello, pretty bird. What's the matter? Cockatoo got your throat?
~ Nigel's first and most famous quote.

Nigel, also sometimes known as Nigel the Cockatoo, is the main antagonist of Blue Sky's Rio film series. He serves as the main antagonist of Blue Sky's 6th feature film Rio and one of the two main antagonists (alongside Big Boss) of it's 2014 sequel Rio 2. He is also the main antagonist of the spin-off game Angry Bird: Rio.

He is a villainous sulphur-crested cockatoo and Blu and Jewel's arch-nemesis. He is also Marcel's former pet and "evil henchbird", Charlie's former boss and Gabi's boyfriend.

He was voiced by Jemaine Clement, who also played Boris the Animal in Men in Black 3, Fleshlumpeater in The BFG and Tamatoa in Moana.


When he makes his debut appearance, Nigel is greedy, arrogant, and treacherous. He is an intelligent, manipulative, malevolent, cunning, and vengeful cockatoo who exhibited highly antisocial behavior. He almost breaks the fourth wall as he enjoys the fact that he is a villain and states it when he topples over and outranks Big Boss as he says "No one steals MY scene!"

He is very violent, dangerous, and destructive, constantly seen using physical force to injure or terrorize other characters, including those who he believes can help out in his plans. For instance, Nigel threatened to give Mauro and his subordinates "flying lessons" to coerce the monkeys into helping him find Blu and Jewel. After the battle in the samba club, Nigel arrived at the scene and terrorized another bird into telling him where the blue macaws went by threatening to "pop" or "crack" her head.

He is also extremely cruel, sadistic, and egotistical, often taking great joy and pleasure in others' suffering. For example, he was shown in the smugglers' lair to terrorize the captured birds, and he later ridiculed Jewel when her wing was injured. In both situations, he laughed maniacally in response to seeing his victims' fear and injury.

He is also very unsympathetic and ruthless; he shows no pity or mercy to his victims and enemies and holds little or no remorse for his evil deeds.

However, in the second film, he is more comedic and more focused on acting and his performance. When he gets to the island, he doesn't even acknowledge Blu's presence when he walks near and he doesn't interact with Blu until the last-minute fight.


Nigel is a large Sulphur-crested cockatoo. As such, he is covered in white plumage, bearing a black beak and yellow crest feathers. He also has pale red bags under his eyes.

In Rio 2, Nigel wears a green and yellow bird-sized vest of Elizabethan design. He now has a large bald spot on his chest (which was made when Nigel ends up being shredded by the propellers), which is covered up by the vest.



Nigel was once the popular star of many animal TV shows. He was suave, handsome, intellectual, and ambitious, albeit a bit selfish and arrogant.

However, Nigel was later meanly kicked out of fame and replaced by a green parakeet called Petricious. Since then, Nigel hatefully despises all "pretty birds" and he became evil, bitter, hideous, vituperative and mean-spirited bird.

At some point, Nigel later became the "evil henchbird" of a group of smugglers led by Marcel, and he vowed to cause pain to all "pretty birds" as revenge for his acting role being ruined.


Nigel is first seen as a "patient" at Tulio's aviary. He was claimed to have been found and recovered by smugglers. However, his sickness is quickly revealed to be a front; that night, he tricks a guard into picking him up by pretending to be injured, then knocks him out with a chloroform-soaked rag and steals his keys. He then lets Fernando in and he steals Blu and Jewel and brings them to Marcel's hideout. When Jewel tries to escape, Nigel pins her down and starts choking her, taunting her by asking, "What's the matter? Cockatoo got your throat?". However, Marcel orders him to bring her back alive, so the cockatoo returns her to the cage. After Blu and Jewel are locked up, Nigel comes to them and explains the motivation of his evil nature through the song "Pretty Bird," saying that he plans on making them "ugly" as well. He then bids them sweet nightmares and flies off, laughing evilly.

Later, Nigel hears the macaws trying to escape and tries to stop them. The chase leads into the slums of Rio de Janeiro, where Nigel collides with an electrical transformer, botching his attempt to catch the birds and blacking out the whole city of Rio in the process including a stadium which held a soccer game that Armando and Tipa were watching. After recovering, Nigel heads back to the smugglers' hideout.

Nigel is sent by Marcel to retrieve Blu and Jewel, while Marcel and the other smugglers (Tipa and Armando) plan to use the Carnival show to hide the smuggling of the birds to get to the nearest airport.

Nigel hires a group of mischievous marmosets to help him catch Blu and Jewel, in doing so, he abuses their leader Mauro, and threatens to give them "flying lessons" if they do not find them by the end of the day.

Mauro and his henchmen manage to find Blu and Jewel, but they get into a battle with the Samba Club birds and they fail to capture them. When Nigel arrives at the place where the battle had been he finds a green bird and asks her a question on the whereabouts of the Blue Macaws. Nigel then abuses Mauro for his failure, then goes after Blu and Jewel himself. He eventually captures Jewel and uses her as bait to lure in Blu and his best friends. The plan works and he locks them all in cages.

After the captives are loaded into the smugglers' plane, the plane takes off. But, Blu later manages to free himself and all the other birds, letting them escape out of the plane. However, as Blu tries to get over his fear of flying, Nigel attacks Blu, pins him and attempts to strangle him. Jewel tries to help, but Nigel throws her aside, causing a cage to fall on Jewel's wing, injuring it. Nigel darkly mocks the macaws, but an angered Blu manages to hook a fire extinguisher onto the cockatoo's foot and sets it off. Nigel is blasted out of the plane and manages to get the extinguisher off. However, a propeller flies at him, seemingly killing him and eventually causing the plane to fall. Blu finally learns how to fly, and escapes the crashing plane with Jewel. Marcel and the smugglers escape the plane as well.

Sometime later, Nigel is revealed to have survived, but he has lost most of his feathers and is humiliated by a "photo finish" by (presumably) Mauro as payback for his abuse against him and the other marmosets earlier.

Rio 2

That blue bird caused my misery!
~ Nigel reacting upon spotting his old foe, Blu, passing by him and remembering how much pain and suffering the latter caused the former.

Nigel returns in the second film as one of the two main antagonists (alongside Big Boss).

A few years after the first film, Nigel, who suffered the most undignified of indignities (defeated by what he calls "the pretty birds" and losing his feathers in the process), is back. However, he now flies like a chicken and wears an Elizabethan vest (which hides a large bald patch on his chest) due to his previous accident. Shortly after the plane crash at the end of the first film, he was found by humans, taken into a veterinary surgery and operated on. The head surgeon commented that "he'll live, but he'll never fly again". After that, Nigel began working as a fortune-teller's assistant at a third-rate street fair. Nigel is at the lowest point in his life and he isn't happy about it at all.

When Nigel sees the bluebirds that have caused him so much misery, he seeks vengeance. He follows them to the Amazon and is now hungry for payback. Along the way, he liberates a big mute anteater called Charlie and a poison dart frog named Gabi from the street-fair. He enlists them as his minions and together they track Blu and Jewel to the Amazon and plan Nigel's revenge.

Nigel's predominant passions are Shakespeare, evil, alliteration, revenge, and attention. For Nigel, revenge is a dish best served cold, and with lots of blood-stained feathers.

Nigel's dreams of show business glory take flight in a particularly telling moment. As he prepares to deal with Blu once and for all, Nigel ends up taking center stage, in disguise, at the auditions overseen by Nico, Pedro, and Rafael. Nigel comes up with an act, on the fly, which sparks his inner artist. He goes under the name of Bob the bird to avoid the suspicion of Nico, Pedro, and Rafael as they point out that he looked familiar to them.

He uses his newfound attention to his advantage as he wins the audition, and plots to kill Blu with a poisonous dart, using a porcupine quill as a dart, Gabi's venom for poison and Charlie's long snout to fire the dart.

His performance is canceled, as the loggers attack the jungle to get their wood and a battle ensues between the loggers and the jungle animals. During the battle, Nigel attempts to shoot Blu with the poisoned dart but fails. When Blu removes a strap of lit TNT from a site of designated trees to be demolished, Nigel prevents Big Boss, the head logger, from stopping him, wanting Blu for himself. As Blu flies the TNT upwards into the air, Nigel grabs on and attacks him, revealing himself to Blu just as the TNT blows up. However, both Nigel and Blu survive the explosion and end up tangled in vines, upside-down and unconscious. When they both regain consciousnesses, Nigel attacks Blu and they have a feather fight. Gabi and Charlie try to help Nigel by shooting Blu with another poison dart, but it accidentally hits Nigel. Nigel, thinking that he is about to die, gives an Elizabethan death speech, then seemingly dies and falls off his branch to the ground below. Gabi, thinking that she killed Nigel and unwilling to live without him, drinks a drop of her poison and presumably dies. However, it is revealed that Gabi is not poisonous at all, but was convinced that she was as a child. Nigel, still alive, tries to attack Blu and Jewel one last time, but Gabi drags Nigel away and showers him with affection against his will as he tries to escape her grasp.

Nigel and Gabi are later captured by Tulio, and taken back to Rio to be observed.



Oh, I know I'm not a pretty birdie but I used to be quite a looker. A star.
~ Nigel tells Blu and Jewel his past
Sweet nightmares! (chuckles evilly)
~ Nigel leaves
Hello, boys. Seems like you've had a busy day." (Mauro: What? This? This is just some stuff we... found.) I'm not interested in your nicked knick-knacks. Your burgled baubles bore me. There are two blue macaws out there and I need your multitude of eyes to help me find them. (Mauro: Oh, yeah? What's in it for us?) "Well, that's a fair question. (Nigel flies with Mauro) Let's discuss it. (lets go of Mauro) I certainly see your point, but what can I possibly do for you in return?" (Mauro: Save me! Save me!) Oh, well, that's a thought, yeah. But is it enough? I don't wanna feel like I'm cheating you. (stops Maro)Alright, you've twisted my wing. Deal. Now then. Any more questions? No? Good. You will spread out and you will find these macaws by the end of the day. or it's FLYING LESSONS FOR EVERYONE! Go! Go do your monkey business.
~ Nigel threatens the marmosets to find Blu and Jewel
What happened? (Mauro: Papa?) WHAT HAPPENED?! (Nigel pounces on Tiny) Stop your chirping and talk to me! Hmmm. When I bite down on your head will it go 'pop' or will it go 'crack'? Where are the cerulean birds? That means blue, by the way." (Tiny: They escaped! Went to Luiz!) Anything else?" (Tiny: They said you were very nice.) Hmm.. did they? Liar! (Tiny: And... handsome, too?) (Nigel throws Tiny to Mauro) Never send a monkey to do a bird's job.
~ Nigel sees that the marmosets failed to capture Blu and jewel and threatens Tiny for their whereabouts
Going somewhere, pretty bird? (Jewel: Oh, yeah. I was just on my way to CLAW YOUR EYES OUT!) (Jewel breaks out of her captor's grip and they fight. Pedro and Nico notice this and their eyes widen with terror. Nigel snatches Jewel's legs in his talons.) Temper, temper. Now come along, my dear. We're going to a parade. And EVERYBODY loves a parade. (He laughs maniacally, dragging the struggling Jewel with him.) (Jewel: Let GO of me!) (Pedro: Hey! Get back here! Ain't nobody mess with a friend of Pedro! I ain't havin' it! It's on!) (he starts punching the air) (Nico: What are you on? Did you see the talons on that guy?) (Pedro: Talons? Maybe it's on next time.) (they turn and fly away) Ralfieeee!) (Nico: Blu! Help!) (Pedro: Help!)
~ Nigel bird-napping Jewel
Oh, I don't need to find him. He'll find you.
~ Nigel knows Blu will find him and Jewel.
Oh, pity. Now we have two useless, flightless birds
~ Nigel's last words before Blu launches him.

Rio 2

To be, or not to be?
~ Nigel's first line in the sequel
That blue bird caused my misery!
~ Nigel sees Blu and remembers how he lost his flying ability
We aren't here to snack! We're here to avenge! Once these pesky passengers fall asleep, we'll show our blue friends some love. Some poisonous love. We attack at midnight hour...Cause it's more evil. Stay alert!
~ Nigel explains his plan to Gabi and Charlie
Charlie! You were supposed to wake me!
~ Nigel threatens Charlie
Stop! That one is mine.
~ Nigel tells Gabi that he will kill Blu
Twinkle twinkle little Blu, how I wondered where were you? Up above the world, so high - are you ready to die?
~ Nigel makes an attempt to kill Blu
Even in sleep you mock me!
~ Nigel unable to kill Blu
Ugh, river hogs!
~ Nigel yells at the boat Big Boss was in.
Instead of chasing that bird all over the jungle. We let him come to us, at the Carnaval show. I'll mesmerize them from the stage. And you, my little Gabi. You will be my petite weapon of mass destruction. It will be a performance to die for (laughs evilly).
~ Nigel explains his new plan.
De ja vu, Blu.
~ Nigel unmasks himself that he was Bob.
We're not dead?
~ Nigel surprised that Bia said Gabi was not poisonous.
I'm sorry, I'll be nicer. No! no. Charlie! Charlie!!! (Screaming with fright) THIS IS UNNATURAL!!!
~ Nigel's last words when Gabi keeps on hugging him.


  • His true first name is Cocks. It should be noted that "Cock" means a rooster or male chicken and has nothing to do with a cockatoo.
  • Kelsey Grammer, Christopher Lloyd, John Goodman, John Cleese, Alec Baldwin, Hugo Weaving, Alan Tudyk, Will Ferrell, Harry Shearer, Liam Neeson, the late Ian Holm, Kenneth Branagh, Gary Oldman, Sean Bean, Benjamin Bratt, Alfred Molina, Eddie Izzard and John Malkovich were all considered for the role of Nigel.
  • Many fans of the Rio franchise hope one day there will be a third film where Nigel can redeem himself.
  • Although a sulfur-crested cockatoos' diet consists almost entirely of insects or plants, Nigel was seen eating a chicken leg in the first film. It is mistakenly said by Tipa to be cannibalism. This is most likely due to Tipa's stupidity.
  • When he was a telenovela star, he starred in TV shows titled Fly Hard, All My Flock, and As the Cage Turns and participated in the Carnival parade. It was also mentioned that he was once popular all across South America.
  • The extended version of the song "Pretty Bird" mentions that when Nigel was pushed out of fame, he was replaced by a parakeet from Paraguay named Petricious. This may be the reason he was drawn to criminal activities. However, the reason just being that "they got a pretty parakeet to fill his shoes" was in both that version and the shortened version that was in the first film.
  • Like Blu, Nigel was a pet. Despite this, he was trained to do a certain task (smuggling birds) and Blu was not.
  • He is also similar to Heraclio from Justin and the Knights of Valour.
  • Surprisingly enough, he is somehow damaged by the Mighty Eagle's earthquake in Angry Birds Rio, which is unusual, being that he is never even close to the ground in levels when fought against.
  • He was noticeably stronger than most other birds in terms of physical strength, considering both his size and sharp talons.
  • Nigel is the overall main antagonist of the Rio franchise on account of being Blu's archenemy. In Rio 2, even though Big Boss was the bigger threat (since he planned to destroy the entire rain forest), Nigel served as The Heavy because his quest for revenge on Blu drove the plot, which makes Big Boss the Big Bad and the one behind the plot.
    • Plus, he happened to be as evil as Big Boss despite not being the Bigger Bad.
  • When Nigel sees Blu in Rio 2, he makes the same reaction that Scrat did in Ice Age: The Meltdown when a piranha took his acorn.
  • His defeat in the first film is very similar to Syndrome's death in The Incredibles. However, it is later revealed that Nigel survived, despite serious injury.
  • While Marcel drove the plot of the first Rio film, Nigel is the central antagonist since he was a more prominent character.
  • In the Italian dub, Nigel is renamed Miguel (which is also a reference to the late Miguel Ferrer, who voiced Big Boss, the other main antagonist of Rio 2). In the French Dub, he is named Hector.
  • Nigel is the first villainous role of Jemaine Clement.
  • In the poster of Rio, despite the 4th billing of Luiz’s voice actor Tracy Morgan and the 5th billing of his voice actor Jemaine Clement, Nigel and Luiz never interact with each other, also in the 6th billing, Linda and Nigel never interact with each other.


           BlueSkyTitle.png Villains

Animated Features
Soto | Soto's Pack (Zeke, Lenny & Oscar) | Carl & Frank | Dab | Madame Gasket | Phineas T. Ratchet | Cretaceous & Maelstrom | Lone Gunslinger | Sour Kangaroo | Vlad Vladikoff | The Wickersham Brothers | Rudy | Scratte | Nigel | Marcel | Armando and Tipa | Marmosets (Mauro) | Captain Gutt | Gutt's Pirate Crew (Squint, Flynn, Gupta, Raz, Dobson & Silas) | Rats | Sirens | Mandrake | Dagda | Bufo | Big Boss | Gabi | Loggers | Charlie | Red Baron | Patty | Gavin | Gertie | Roger | El Primero | Killian | Katsu Kimura | M9 Assassins

See Also
Ice Age Villains

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