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You have something very rare. You have wonder. You have mastiff. You have... nature. Come with me, and will takeover all earths mightiest winds.
~ V.A. Vandevere.

Red V.A. Vandevere is the main antagonist of the 2019 remake of Dumbo. He is the ruthless owner of the amusement park Dreamland.

He was portrayed by Academy Award nominee actor Michael Keaton, who also played Chick Hicks in Cars, Ken in Toy Story 3, Vulture in Spider-Man: Homecoming, Raymond Sellars in Robocop, Betelgeuse in Beetlejuice and Carter Hayes in Pacific Heights.

Personality

At first, Vandavere was thought to be a kind man as he formed a beneficial deal with Max Medici to show Dumbo's talent to the world. But this is all a facade to his true nature as a ruthless greedy businessman who is determined to make profit by any means necessary, as he was more than determined to have Dumbo's mother killed in order to keep Dumbo for himself.

He is also a bit foolish as when he tried to turn the electricity back on with two switches at once, only to accidentally start a fire which eventually destroyed his theme park and led to his downfall.

Biography

Employing the Medici Circus

Vandavere first appeared when news grew about the baby elephant Dumbo being capable of using his large ears to fly at the Medici Brothers' Circus, which has enamored the audience. To that end, he formed a deal with the circus owner 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, 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.

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. To that end, he contacted a poacher named Neils Skellig, hoping that he would kill her for her skin. He also fired all of the Medici Circus' troupe to cover his tracks.

However, Holt Farrier and the troupe soon learned about Vandavere's plot and decided to free both Mrs. Jumbo and Dumbo from captivity. When Holt and the troupe set their plan into action, Vandevere attempts to stop them, but inadvertently starts a fire triggered by an enraged mismanagement of Dreamland's electricity system, which spreads and destroys the park. After Dumbo saves Holt and his family from the fire, they (along with Collette and the rest of the troupe) bring Dumbo and his mother to the harbor, where they board a ship back to their native home in India.

Defeat

Following the troupe's escape, Vandavere furiously orders for Medici to be arrested for 'stealing his elephant' and 'breach of contract'. However, Medici wisely points out that Vandavere has bigger problems to deal first by pointing out that Dreamland is burning thanks to Vandavere's foolishness, something which Vandavere realized too late. He is last seen moping in defeat as he watches his park being burned down.

It was later implied that Vandavere and his cohorts got arrested and put to trial by the authorities for arson and misconduct, much to his dismay.

Quotes

Momy’s going on a trip..
~ Vandevere setting his rights on Jumbo.
Just when I thought I’d seen everything.
~ Vandevere seeing Dumbo fly.

Trivia

  • This was the third movie Keaton worked with Danny DeVito and the sixth movie he participated with Tim Burton.
  • Vandavere is considered to be a parody of Walt Disney, as they are both wealthy businesmen known to run successful theme parks. However, Vandavere is considered to be a more darker version of Disney due to the former's insatiable desire for greed and disregard of his fellow employees.

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