Are you mad? You don't know the power of Styrofoam!
~ Bolt

Bolt is a fictional white American Shepherd Dog and the main protagonist of Disney's 48th full-length animated feature film with the same name. He was voiced by John Travolta.  He is also played as the Only Sane Man of his Four-Man Band.

Bolt's character development embodies the film’s main messages regarding trust and loyalty. 

In the movie, Bolt has spent his entire life from early puppyhood on a TV-set, where he has been kept isolated from the outside world by the producers of a hit TV show. In the TV show, Bolt must use his superpowers to save his owner and co-actor Penny, whom he loves dearly, from the evil plans of the malevolent villain “Dr. Calico”. Having had no contact with the outside world, Bolt believes that he actually has the superpowers possessed by his TV-figure. This is a delusion the directors of the show efforts to preserve by the use of live effects and stunts, tricking him, week after week, into thinking his adventures are real, in order to make his performance more authentic.


When Bolt, in a misguided attempt to rescue Penny, winds up unconscious in shipping box, he is unintentionally shipped to New York. After having been stranded in the outside world, he discovers that his sense of reality, and therefore his sense of identity, has been severely skewed. Alone, lost and armed with nothing but the hope that his beloved owner Penny still loves him, he embarks on a journey through America to get back to Hollywood, accompanied by an abandoned street cat named Mittens, and a hamster in a plastic ball named Rhino. Along the way, Bolt is forced to acknowledge his limitations and trust other characters to help him, while still holding on to the hope that Penny’s love for him was true and that she is waiting for him in Hollywood. In the end, Bolt learns that his deepest virtues; his bravery, loyalty and canine faithfulness, rather than his perceived superpowers, is what makes him a hero.


  • The character Bolt was designed and developed by Chris Williams and Byron Howard together with the chief character designer Joe Mosier along with his two animators Tony Fucile and Scott Robideau. Much of the inspiration for the character was provided by John Lasseter . The voice cast was done by John Travolta, whose earnest and gentle vocal performance did much to make Bolt into the character he is.


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