Heimlich is a caterpillar from Disney/Pixar's 1998 film A Bug's Life. He was voiced by the late great and talented, Joe Ranft, who also voiced Lenny in Toy Story, Wheezy (Toy Story) in Toy Story 2, Claws Ward in Monsters, Inc., Jacques in Finding Nemo, Vultureman in Oliver, Ogre in Oliver the Giant Kitten, Zorak in Oliver the Kitten films, Leo, Evil Tiger Kitten with Black Stripes, Jemm, Weevil Underwood and Plum Loco Louie in Marie the White Female Kitten, Lokar and Horde Trooper #8 in Oliver's Love, Crocodile, Hippo, Zebra and Frog in I Wanted a Black Cat, Snow Wolf Monster in Oliver Likes a Snow and Elmo St. Peters in The Brave Little Toaster.

Background information
Feature films A Bug's Life
House of Mouse (2000 film)
A Bug's Life 2: The Adventures of Fearless Pals
Toy Story 2 (cameo)
Television programs
Video games
Park attractions World of Color
Heimlich's Chew Chew Train
Block Party Bash
Pixar Play Parade
Portrayed by
Portrayed by
Voice Joe Ranft (1998-2005)
Bill Fagerbakke (currently)
Hannibal Buress (2020-2032)
International Voice
Performance model
Honors and awards
Character information
Full name
Other names
Personality Clumsy, hungry, gluttonous, sweet, jolly, dimwitted, kind
Appearance Obese lime caterpillar, green stripe on his back, red antennae
Occupation Clown
Goal To become a "beautiful butterfly"
To help Flik fight off the grasshoppers
Home P.T. Flea's Circus
Love Interests
Allies P.T. Flea, Flik, Atta, Dot, The Queen, Dim, Rosie, Francis, Slim, Gypsy, Manny, Tuck and Roll, Molt, the other ants
Enemies Hopper, Molt (formerly), Thumper, the grasshoppers, The Fly Brothers, the Bird
Likes Food, performing
Dislikes Francis' attitude, getting fired, doing anything on an empty stomach
Powers and abilities Weak flight (as a butterfly)
Fate Becomes a butterfly and leaves Ant Island with his fellow circus bugs
Quote "I hate performing on an empty stomach!"
"Someday I will be a beautiful butterfly and then everything will be better."
"Francis, leave them alone. They are poo poo heads!"


Heimlich is shown to have a gluttonous appetite and is seen eating almost all the time, especially while helping the ants construct amodel bird to scare Hopper and his gang. Although brave, he still shows fear when a real bird nearly eats him. Also, when Hopper shouts at the approaching circus wagon, he frightens Heimlich who says he thinks he's going to wet himself.


A Bug's Life

Heimlich is a fat green caterpillar with a German accent who works as a clown in P.T. Flea's circus troupe. He is very gluttonous and always seems to be eating. Even during a performance, he offered to help finish one of the audience members' candy corn. The fly refused, but then it turned out that he got the candy corn anyway. He then later calls the flies "Poo Poo Heads" when Francis is arguing with them.

At the beginning of the film, he says that he dreams of being a "beautiful butterfly." He also at one point turns gray when he sees the mural of him being killed in the battle against the grasshoppers. At the end of the film, he pops from his chrysalis, squeezes out (having only turned blue), and sprouts a pair of tiny wings, finally a butterfly, but still remains flightless (due to his obesity), and it takes the efforts of Francis, Manny, Flik, and a few other ants to get him up in the air. Whilst a caterpillar, Heimlich was carried by the rhinoceros beetle, Dim, for transport.

House of Mouse (2000 film)

A Bug's Life 2: The Adventures of Fearless Pals


  • Heimlich's obesity may be a reference to Eric Carle's The Very Hungry Caterpillar.
  • Heimlich also appears in Toy Story 2.
    • He appears close-up in an outtake of the film, alongside Flik, where they express their excitement about the making of a sequel to their film, but tells Flik that the film is a sequel that is not for A Bug's Life.
    • Heimlich is also present during the film: he is seen crawling on the branches just before Buzz Lightyear chops them down.
    • While Buzz is looking for Woody at Al's Toy Barn, he passes toys of Heimlich and other characters from A Bug's Life.
  • Heimlich is the second classic Pixar character voiced by the late great and talented Joe Ranft, right after Lenny in the 1st and original Toy Story film.
  • Heimlich isn't a meetable character in theme parks, but he is a robotic character in the Pixar Play Paradein Disney California Adventure located in Los Angeles and Anaheim, California. His theme park robots were voiced by John Ratzenberger.
  • Heimlich appears in World of Color.
  • Heimlich was possibly named after Dr. Henry Heimlich, inventor of the Heimlich maneuver.
  • Heimlich was screaming by the Bird.