The gallant Captain Phoebus de Châteaupers is noted to have a highly reputable calibre in the wars based on his bravery accounted in his service record. He is the only soldier in the movie that stands apart from the other soldiers and is claimed to be a knight in shining armor, and yet his character displays the exact opposite of the hopeless romantic knight from the fairy tales. The Disney Animators chose to deviate from the book and created a mature, down-to-earth Phoebus who is far less the dimwitted, womanizing cad that he is portrayed in the book.
Though he tends to be over-analyzed and act like he knows what he's doing, he is described as a soldier who is sarcastically witty, brave, confident, and enjoys finding humor in situations. Gary Trousdale admits that what he most likes about Phoebus is that "although he can keep a straight face when it's required of him, you can tell deep down, he'd rather tell a joke". Phoebus is almost always seeming to get into arguments, even with Esmeralda.
Out of Frollo and his men, Phoebus is the only one that cleverly sees through the disguise of Esmeralda and is also quick to discover that Frollo's ideals for justice are unethical and a twisted kind of corruption. Unfortunately, the opportunistic Phoebus had already accepted Frollo's summon to be his Captain of the Guard under the assumption that the Minister of Justice was righteous and fair; therefore, he accepts this reality of working for a corrupt man as a consequence for diving into this opportunity he should not have readily taken in his desire to leave the wars and settle down for a more stabilized life. When Phoebus meets Quasimodo for the first time, he treats him with a friendly attitude, showing that he is not bothered at all by his deform appearance.
As Frollo's cruelty towards the other gypsies increases with the level of obsession he has for Esmeralda, Phoebus is forced to choose between his passion for guarding the defenseless people with the condition that he works under Frollo, or be jobless due to the fact that he is trained to be nothing else but a soldier that he is fated to be in this feudalistic society. Throughout the film, Phoebus becomes more of the neutral hero that takes orders from Frollo then later goes behind Frollo's back and helps those who are caught in Frollo's injustice. However, when Frollo unreasonably orders Phoebus to burn down a miller's home with the innocent family trapped inside, Phoebus takes a stand and refuses to murder the innocent. When Frollo sets fire to the windmill and sends the miller's home ablaze, Phoebus bravely puts his own life on the line for the lives of another family and dives through the window of the burning building, takes the two children in his arms, and kicks down the bolted door to lead the rest of the family out to safety.
When he is sentenced to be beheaded for insubordination, Phoebus holds no fear of death from his experience in the wars and boldly accepts it as his highest honor. As an ex-soldier fugitive, Phoebus continues to help the gypsies from Frollo's obsessed wrath and after escaping from his imprisonment, instills courage in the people and joins both the townspeople and the gypsies together to fight against Frollo and his men from the attack on Notre Dame.
At first glance, Phoebus finds Esmeralda to be an attractive woman to look at, but it was only until after witnessing her stand up against Frollo did his interests for her setting herself apart prompt him to find out her name. In the cathedral scene, Esmeralda takes him off guard when the gypsy abruptly takes him down and points his own sword at him, the first woman to do that in a time where women were regarded by everyone as submissive to men. Phoebus took her challenge and got out from his dangerous position in order to talk to her, but then finds his flirtatious entertainment in deflecting her attacks with the candle stand. Because he fails to take things seriously, he gets injured a few times as a result. Not intending the fight to be as serious as she was making it out to be, Phoebus bows out and acknowledges her as an equal.
His confidence is neither passed arrogance nor conceitedness as he displays awkwardness to Esmeralda when he introduces himself with the meaning of his name, "Sun God." Contrary to all the men that fawn over her beauty, Phoebus is the only one that simply asks for her name out of his interest to get to know her better. The captain of the guards finds her to be more than just a beautiful woman to look at after the feisty gypsy proved to stand out from what society expected of women and also have a true sense of justice. According to the Disney animators, the soldier Phoebus enchants, beguiles, and challenges Esmeralda in the same way that she does to others. Explains Kirk Wise, "we had to create a character who would seem worthy of Esmeralda's love and be loved and accepted by the audience."
When Phoebus realizes Quasimodo also has feelings for Esmeralda, however, Phoebus steps back to give Quasimodo a chance to impress Esmeralda and settles on a friendship with Esmeralda instead. In the end, despite the fact that they are from two worlds that are forbidden to be together by society, Quasimodo steps back and reunites Phoebus with Esmeralda as an official and passionate couple in the end. Phoebus then shows Esmeralda a new Paris where the townspeople and the outcasts are united and both watch as Quasimodo is cheered on and accepted by the people like he rightfully deserved and wanted.
Phoebus, as shown in the second film, also has a very bad habit of asking his horse, Achilles, rhetorical questions (this happened twice in the second film, the first was "How many times have I ever been wrong?" and "You see that, Achilles? Everyone is mad at me. How often has that happened?") to which the horse ends up answering.
He wears knight clothing that is gold in both Disney films. He has blonde hair, and has a short beard beneath his chin. His eye color is black.
He first appears by asking for directions to see Judge Claude Frollo, and then sees a gypsy dancing. He gives the gypsy coins, and helps the gypsy escape from the guards. His appears to be looking for Frollo, and is taking to him. He then attends the festival of fools with Frollo. Phoebus then sees, and falls in love with Esmeralda. When Quasimodo is crowned king of fools, he is then tormented by the guards. Phoebus asks Frollo if he can stop the torment before it gets worse, but Frollo tells him no. He watches Esmeralda approach Quasimodo on stage without fear, and also sees her stand up to Frollo for not helping Quasimodo. Phoebus is impress by her skills on escaping the guards, and is ordered by Frollo to find Esmeralda.
He finds Esmeralda in the church of Notre Dame, and fights her. They talk for a while, and are about to kiss. But Frollo and his thugs come into the church. Phoebus tells Frollo that she claimed sanctuary. He leaves after she is protected by the archdeacon. He then snuck back into the cathedral without Frollo knowing.
Phoebus met Quasimodo when the hunchback came back from helping Esmeralda escape the guards. He asks Quasi where she is, and he doesn't answer him. Quasi tells him to leave the bell tower, and he asks Quasi to protect her for him. He then leaves, and tells Quasi that he is lucky to have a friend like Esmeralda. Phoebus is then seen again when Frollo is looking for Esmeralda, and locks up other gypsies. Phoebus becomes increasingly annoyed with Frollo's unjust actions, and finally goes against him when he is instructed to burn down the house of a miller, even though the miller along with his wife and children are innocent of any crime. Phoebus is branded a traitor and sentenced to death.
But he escapes the guard by using Frollo's horse. He then is wounded, and jumps into the river losing his armor in the process. Esmeralda then saves him, and brings him to Quasimodo for help. He then is healed by Esmeralda, and kisses her. Phoebus goes unconscious after revealing his love to Esmeralda. So when Frollo comes to the bell tower, Quasimodo hides Phoebus under the table. At first Phoebus wakes up under the table, but Quasimodo kicks him unconscious again. After Frollo leaves the bell tower, he finally wakes up.
He asks Quasimodo if he is coming with him to the Court of Miracles. But Quasimodo says no, and so Phoebus tells him to do what he think is right. In the end Quasimodo joins in to look the court of miracles. Once there, they are capture by Clopin. They try to tell Clopin that they aren't spies. But this leads them to almost be hung. Luckily Esmeralda tells Clopin that they are their friends. Phoebus and Quasimodo are set free by Esmeralda. He tells them that Frollo is coming for them, To which Esmeralda tells everyone to pack up quickly. Esmeralda is happy that he and Quasimodo took a big risk to come here to warn them, and gives him a hug showing her gratitude. Upon seeing Quasimodo being left out, he lets Quasimodo have all the credit by telling Esmeralda to thank Quasimodo helping him find her. To which Frollo shows up and captures everyone, including Esmeralda and him. Upon being capture, Frollo expresses surprise at Phoebus's supposed return from the dead, but promises to "remedy" it before long.
During Esmeralda's execution Phoebus is seen in a cage, and is locked in it. Before Esmeralda is kill by the fire, Quasimodo frees himself from the chains that were tying him up, and swings down just in time to save her. Phoebus then witness Quasimodo carrying Esmeralda up the church with one arm. To which Phoebus decided to frees himself by knocking out a guard. He then tells the citizens to help fight Frollo's army. So he has the townspeople help him frees all the gypsies, and fight Frollo's guards. To which the gypsies help fight the guards as well. Phoebus holds his own rather well during the fight, even pushing three thugs back at once with a spear. During the climac battle between Frollo and Quasimodo, Phoebus is nowhere to be found. Frollo falls to his death from the balcony of Notre Dame into the fire, and is never seen again.
However, when Esmeralda loses her grip on a dangling Quasimodo. Phoebus for unknown reasons also had found a way into the cathedral after Quasimodo uses molten copper to prevent Frollo's thugs from breaking the door. Thus Phoebus manages to save Quasimodo just in time from falling in the fire as well. He then given a hug by Quasimodo. This caused Quasimodo to accept Phoebus as his friend and his relationship with Esmeralda. Phoebus decided to give Quasimodo some alone time with Esmeralda, but Quasimodo does this for Phoebus by putting his and Esmeralda's hands together. Proclaiming them as husband and wife thus leading them to have their second kiss to which Quasimodo smiles upon seeing. He and Esmeralda come out of the bell tower, and the townspeople cheer. So he and Esmeralda let Quasimodo come out, and watch a little girl come up to hug him for the first time. In the end he along with Esmeralda, and Djali watch happily as Quasimodo is accepted into society, and is crowned a hero.
He kisses Esmeralda, and is now married to her. He comes to visit Quasimodo at the bell tower. Phoebus then tells his six-year-old son Zephyr to listen to his mother, and he watches Esmeralda look at La Fidele. So Phoebus tells Esmeralda, and Zephyr that Quasimodo will ring La Fidele. Leading for Esmeralda to kiss him, and both Quasi along with Zephyr say yuck.
Phoebus later appears again at the circus when Quasimodo asks them about the outfit his wearing, and they all say he looks great. Everyone enjoys the circus, but he accuses the circus people. Leading for him and Esmeralda an argument when she thinks that he is comparing the circus people with gypsies. He then asks Quasimodo where is this Madellaine person that he told them about. Quasimodo informs him that Madellaine will be out soon. He is seen watching a circus performance with Quasimodo, and his family. Once he sees Madellaine on stage, he smiles at Quasimodo, but Quasimodo blushes in Embrassement. After the show is over, he spends time with Esmeralda. Leading Quasimodo to spend time with Zephyr. He then leaves with Zephyr after Quasimodo brings him to them.
Months later he learns that someone is stolen jewelry from the townspeople. Later He accuses the circus of the robbery that has being happen in Paris. This leads for him to have a strained relationship with his family and Quasimodo. Who all blame him, and are all mad at him for the way he is acting. He then finds Sarousch, and is told by Sarousch that Madellaine did all the stolen. He then looks for Madellaine, and has found out that La Fidele was stolen. He blames himself for being tricked by Sarousch, and then arrests Madellaine. Upon learning from Quasimodo that Zephyr went after Sarousch. He tries to look for Zephyr, and Sarousch. But Esmeralda tell him to trust Madellaine, and he does. He brings Madellaine as a prisoner, and they leave find Sarousch.
They found him underground like Madellaine said and sees that he is near the gate that leaves Paris. But Sarousch reveals that he has Zephyr as a hostage as a way out. He then tells him to release Zephyr, and angrily opens the gates so Zephyr won't be harm. Luckily Quasimodo helps Madellaine save Zephyr from Sarousch. He reunites with his son, and arrests Sarousch. At the festival, he admits to his wife that he was wrong. He then shouts out "I love Esmeralda" for everyone to hear, and they kiss. Phoebus then watches Quasimodo shout out his love for Madellaine.
TV Show Appearances
Esmeralda TV Series
- Kingdom of Hearts Dream Drop Distance
Phoebus first appear having to been summon from the war to help Judge Claude Frollo capture the gypsies. He then was seen chasing Esmeralda, asking her to stop. He then sees her use magic tricks to get away. Phoebus the spots Riku and asked him if he seen Esmeralda, and the boy lies saying that he hasn't. Phoebus thanks him, and sadly reports the news to Frollo. But the judge becomes angry at this, and wonders if it was a great idea to have summon Phoebus from the war to help capture the gypsies. Shortly after Sora's arrival in La Cité des Cloches, Phoebus alerts Frollo about the presence of monsters running about in the streets, while Frollo interrogates Sora about being a gypsy. From the beginning, Phoebus does not believe Sora to be guilty of any crime, and runs off to aid him against the Dream Eaters. He witnesses Sora defeat the Dream Eaters and save Frollo's ward, Quasimodo. While Frollo does not approve of this, since he had wanted to teach Quasimodo a lesson for leaving the cathedral, this cements Sora's goodness in Phoebus's eyes, and when Frollo falls for Esmeralda and begins a citywide manhunt for her, Phoebus begins to question his decision to serve Frollo.
Later on, when Frollo orders Phoebus to burn down the house of an innocent miller, Phoebus turns his sword on the mad judge just as Riku arrives on the scene. Frollo, however, summons the Bullet Gargoyle and flees. Realizing that Frollo may attack the gypsy hideout, the Court of Miracles, Phoebus decides to find it first and warn the gypsies, in the process crossing paths with Sora again. Though Sora is initially hesitant to trust Phoebus after seeing him with Frollo, Phoebus manages to convince the boy that they are on the same side. With help from Quasimodo, Phoebus and Sora find the Court of Miracles and warn Esmeralda, but Frollo follows them and subdues Sora and Phoebus with the Bullet Gargoyle while taking Esmeralda prisoner.
At Esmeralda's execution, Phoebus manages to escape from his cage and make his way into the cathedral. As he climbs upwards, he catches Quasimodo from falling to his death mere seconds after Frollo is killed. They reunite with Esmeralda, and Quasimodo blesses Phoebus' relationship with the gypsy girl. He and Esmeralda then went outside of the Cathedral to tell everyone that Frollo has been defeated. Once outside of the Notre Dame Cathedral, he along with Esmeralda and Quasimodo thanked Riku for his help, along with giving the young boy some kind advice before he departed.
- "Hmm? Uh-Uh. Leave town for a couple of decades and they change everything".
- [as the guards chase after Esmerelda and pass behind Phoebus' horse, Achilles] "Achilles, sit!"
- "Oh - dear, I'm sorry! Naughty horse! Naughty! He's just impossible, really; I can't take him anywhere!"
- "Reporting for duty as ordered, sir".
- "And you shall have it, sir. I guarantee it".
- "Well, that's a great... tremendous honor, sir."
- "I was summoned from the wars to capture fortune-tellers and palm-readers?"
- "What are we going to do about it, sir? [Frollo smashes the block over the bugs] You make your point quite vividly, sir."
- "Not recently, sir."
- [In love with Esmeralda] "Yes, sir!"
- [as Quasimodo is cruelly humiliated by the crowd] "Sir, request permission to stop this cruelty."
- [about Esmeralda] "What a woman!"
- "Easy, easy--I just shaved this morning."
- "Alright, alright, just-just-just calm down, just give me a chance to apologize."
- [kicking her to the floor] "That, for example."
- [interrupting] "Ah-ah-ah, watch it. You're in a church."
- [to Esmeralda] "Candlelight, privacy, music. Can't think of a better place for hand-to-hand combat. You fight almost as well as a man!"
- "That's hitting a little below the belt, don't you think?"
- "Touche! Oof!... I didn't know you had a kid."
- [to Esmeralda] "Permit me, I'm Phoebus. It means "Sun god"."
- "I'm sorry sir, she claimed sanctuary. There's nothing I can do."
- [pulling Quasi up onto the balcony after he helps Esmeralda escape Notre Dame] "Hi there. I'm looking for the gypsy girl. Have you seen her? [Quasi jumps onto the balcony, growling at Pheobus like a wild dog, as Pheobus backs away] Whoa - whoa, whoa, easy!"
- "Wait! All I want is to..."
- "I mean her no harm."
- "You tell her for me, that I didn't mean to trap her here. [Quasi glares menacingly] But it was the only way I could save her life. Will you tell her that? [no answer from Quasi] Will you?"
- "I'll go. Now - will you - put me down, please?"
- [To Quasimodo] "Oh, and one more thing. Tell Esmeralda she's very lucky...to have a friend like you."
- "Good morning, sir. [notices Frollo looking a little pale] Are you feeling all right?"
- [disgusted] "What?!"
- [to Frollo, when he orders him to burn a miller's house] "With all due respect, sir, I was not trained to murder the innocent."
- "Consider it my highest honor, sir."
- "Great. I could use a drink.[as Esmeralda pours wine on his wound] AAAAAGH! Yes! Mmmm. Feels like a 1470 burgundy. Not a good year."
- "Ex-soldier, remember? [winces in pain] Why is it, whenever we meet, I end up bleeding?"
- [holds her hand] "I'm not so sure it didn't."
- [Upon realizing that Frollo knows where Esmeralda is hiding and that he will attack, Quasimodo feels as though he should help. Phoebus groans from under the table from which he was hidden from Frollo. Once Frollo leaves, he gets out] "We'll have to find the Court of Miracles before daybreak. If Frollo gets there first... [Starts walking, but Quasimodo does not follow; he just looks at Phoebus with the saddened realization that Esmeralda loves Phoebus, not him. Phoebus turns to him] Are you coming with me?"
- "I thought you were Esmeralda's friend."
- [to Quasimodo, when he refuses to leave the bell tower and warn Esmeralda] "She stood up for you! You've got a funny way of showing gratitude. Well, I'm not gonna sit by and watch Frollo massacre innocent people. You do what you think is right."
- "Glad you changed your mind."
- "You know where she is?"
- [holding up Esmerelda's map] "Good, good, good. Ahhhh, great. What is it?"
- [examining the map] "Hmm, must be some sort of code. Maybe it's Arabic. No, no, it's not Arabic, maybe it's ancient Greek."
- "What're you talking about?"
- "I've never seen a map that looks like..."
- [with Quasi] "This is not it. [they both take deep breaths] All right. Okay. If you say it's a map, fine; it's a map. But if we're going to find Esmeralda, we'll have to work together. Truce?"
- [as he and Quasi walk away to the Court of Miracles] "No, you're not."
- "Offhand, I'd say it's the Court of Ankle-deep Sewage. Must be the old catacombs. Cheerful place.[chuckles] Kinda makes ya wish ya got out more often eh, Quasi?"
- "Speaking of trouble, we should have run into some by now."
- "You know, a guard, a booby trap,[his torch is blown out] or an ambush."
- [to Esmeralda] "Don't thank me, thank Quasimodo. Without his help, we never could have found our way here."
- "CITIZENS OF PARIS! FROLLO HAS PERSECUTED OUR PEOPLE, RANSACKED OUR CITY, AND NOW HE HAS DECLARED WAR ON NOTRE DAME HERSELF! WILL WE ALLOW IT?"
- [repeated lines] "Achilles, sit."
- "Zephyr, stay close. I don't want to lose you."
- "Wait a minute, a string of robberies begins the moment the circus comes to town? Coincidence? I don't think so How many times have I ever been wrong. "
- [entering Esmeralda's tent] "That circus is responsible for a string of robberies."
- "Absolutely not! Those people."
- "But the gypsies weren't guilty of crimes like these circus people."
- "Well, maybe. And maybe she's just using you to get something else."
- "Well, yes... of course, anyone could, but look at the facts."
- [to Achilles] "Achilles, do you believe this? Everybody is mad at me. How often does that happen? [Achilles counts on his hoof] Rhetorical!"
- "I'll let you get back to yourself."
- "Sarousch! How could I have been such a fool?"
- "Quasi, I'm sorry. Take her away."
- "I love Esmeralda!"
- Like most Disney assaults, Phoebus was shown shot in the shoulder but his injury was shown and treated on the front of his chest.
- Phoebus is the first Disney Hero to have facial hair, the second being Flynn Rider from Tangled, who's also the first among the Disney Princes to have facial hair.
- Despite being the captain of the guards, Phoebus has his orders assigned from Judge Claude Frollo. By the sequel however, he appears to have almost the same authority as Frollo had. For example, he has the authority to order a person's arrest.
- Phoebus is likely the second Disney hero to wear armor, since John Smith also wore some part which was just assigned for upper torso.
- Phoebus is much older than Quasimodo. Quasimodo is 20 years old and Phoebus says that has been out of Paris in the wars for two decades. Assuming he couldn’t be in the wars until he's 16 or 18 years old, Phoebus could be in his late 30s or early 40s, significantly older than Quasimodo or Esmeralda.
- Phoebus is the only character in the film that does not sing at all. However, he does have a solo in the deleted song "As Long as There's a Moon".
- Phoebus is the second hero to be saved from drowning by his love interest. The first being Prince Eric, who was saved by Ariel.
- Phoebus bares a slight resemblance to Kristoff from Frozen.
- His voice actor, Kevin Kline, later played Maurice in 2017 remake of Beauty and the Beast.
Phoebus has similarities with John Smith from Disney's Pocahontas.
- Both formerly worked for the main villain in the first film. (For Phoebus: Frollo. Whereas for John Smith : Ratcliffe)
- Both fell in love with women of a race of which the main villain despises. (For Phoebus : Esmeralda. Whereas for John Smith : Pocahontas)
- Both willing risk their life to save others. (For Phoebus : saveing the miller and his family from a burning house including Quasimodo from falling to his death after Frollo is killed in the fire. Whereas for John Smith : when he saves Thomas from drowning, and when he saves Poachontas' father from getting shot by Ratcliffe)
- Both are willing to be punished for insubordination. (For Phoebus : for helping and protecting gypsies including innocent people. Whereas for John Smith : helping Native Americans)
Phoebus is similar to Megara from Hercules,
- Both were sent out to find their respective foes, and later love interests' weakspot. (For Phoebus : his being Esmeralda. Whereas for Meg : her being Hercules)
Not only that Phoebus shares some similarities with Kristoff.
- Both are the tritagonists of their films.
- Both are the love interests of the lead female characters (For Phoebus : Esmeralda. Whereas for Kristoff : Anna)
- Both have animal sidekicks that act more like dogs. (For Phoebus : Achilles. Whereas for Kristoff : Sven)
- Japanese : Soma Suzuki (1996 – Present)
- English : Kevin Kline (both films), Phil Lamarr (Kingdom of Hearts Dream Drop Distance – Present)
all information on Phoebus came from http://disney.wikia.com/wiki/Phoebus