Joe is the rambunctious young son of Holt Farrier who heartily embraces the circus life. He’d love nothing more than to have his own act — but his acrobatic abilities, juggling talent and just about every other imaginable circus skill are not quite up to standards. When Dumbo is born, however, Joe’s enthusiasm and pure heart seem to meet their match.
Behind the scenes
Finley Hobbins makes his feature film debut as Joe. “For my first audio on, I had to perform a scene with a fake Dumbo, which was actually casting director Susie Figgis’ dog, because we didn’t actually have a model of Dumbo,” says Hobbins. “Every few seconds the dog would jiggle around and we’d have a laugh. I had to do the scene where Dumbo is just siting around, feeling quite sad and lonely, so me and Nico go to comfort him.”
Hobbins says he’s enjoyed being among the circus performers. “I like the clowns, who are quite freaky and funny,” he says. “And the contortionists are amazing. I just think to myself, ‘Wow, what if I could do that?’”
As Joe and his sister Milly hurry towards the train station to reunite with their father Holt to which as the children are happy to see their father back, the two found out that Holt never saw his children for a long time. During a conversation with Max Medici, he explains to Holt that he wouldn't want to be a show-off in the circus if only Milly would do the trade to which Milly decides she would do scientific discoveries while Joe explains that he can do handstands for ten seconds, just as Max explains that the circus will be bankrupt by July.
The next day, Joe and Milly wake up Holt, explaining that the elephants need them just as Holt and his children approach an animal handler named Rufus Sorghum to which doing a conversation, the conversation between Holt and Rufus is interrupted when Joe and Milly notice what is wrong with Mrs. Jumbo. Joe and Milly later find out that Mrs. Jumbo gave birth to a baby elephant named "Jumbo Junior" as everyone reacts upon discovering the newborn elephant just as Max gives Holt a deadline to take care of the baby elephant by two weeks. Later, Joe and Milly introduce themselves Jumbo Junior that he is part of the circus family just as the two take care of him. During a conversation with Medici, Joe and Milly hurry towards him about Jumbo Junior's tricks the two did, telling the children to leave him alone.
During a circus performance, Joe and Milly gaze upon Holt trying to protect the baby elephant Dumbo from the audience just as Holt tries to calm Mrs. Jumbo. As Mrs. Jumbo goes on a rampage across the circus, Holt and his children retreat from the mad elephant. Holt and his children notice Mrs. Jumbo being taken away from the circus for being a mad elephant last night, separating Dumbo from his mother just as Holt, his children, and the circus performers react to Dumbo being separated. That night, Joe and Milly comfort over a lonely Dumbo all alone in shelter just as the children notice Dumbo flapping his ears due to the feathers he inhaled just as the children react to this, deciding to add him during the next circus act where he is made into a clown during a clown act so the circus can earn more money.
During the circus act, Holt and his children react in shock when Dumbo is about to fall off the collapsing platform. As Joe tells Dumbo to fly, Milly tells him that he cannot fly without a feather, so Joe gets a feather from a dove's cage and gives it to Milly who then gives it to Dumbo so he can fly. The circus act, however, was a success as Dumbo flies across the circus, as everyone reacts in awe, making the show a success.
The next day as the circus is moving to Arkansas, just Holt cleans Dumbo's pen where Max tells businessman V.A. Vandevere that it is Holt's children who taught Dumbo how to fly, telling him that he is taking his circus to Dreamland at Arkansas. Holt, his children, and the rest of the circus acts travel to the Dreamland amusement park in Arkansas as part of Vandervere's plan. Arriving at Dreamland, Colette tells the children to know how to make Dumbo fly, to which it is explained that Dumbo needs a feather in order to fly. During a conversation between Vandevere and Colette, Vandervere tells Colette that Milly will show her how Colette's act with Dumbo works with help from Joe. Holt's family then watches Dumbo and Colette's act but the act was a failure because Dumbo flew out of the arena. Joe and Milly arrive at the spot where Mrs. Jumbo (billed as "Kali the Destroyer") is displayed at, much to Vandevere and Neils' chagrin and Holt's empty protests. As Holt and his children arrive at Vandevere Enterprises, Milly and Joe explain to Dumbo wanting his mother back but Vandevere refuses much to his plan.
With the whole troupe fired, Holt, his children, and the circus performers plan to rescue Dumbo by releasing him alongside his mother. As Max, Neils, and Vandevere arrive at the backstage area, the three spot the children who are planning to escape while their father Holt manages to rip open part of the tent to rescue Dumbo, much to Vandevere doing his evil plans to arrest Holt's children. Later when Dreamland is being destroyed, Holt rides on one of his horses and rescues his children. Later while surrounded by Neils inside the tent as the fire blocks the exit, Holt riding on his horse comes to the rescue and captures Neils. Furthermore, Dumbo by himself manages to rescue Holt's family and manages to extinguish the fire blocking the exit. Holt and his family manage to escape the circus caught on fire as Dumbo escapes from Dreamland.
Flying across the Brooklyn Bridge in Manhattan (alluding to one of the newspaper articles from the end of the original film), Joe, Milly, and Dumbo arrive towards the port bidding Dumbo and his mother a farewell as Holt's children reunite back to their father, bidding their final moments to Dumbo before Dumbo and his mother leave to the jungle just as Holt, his children, and the circus performers gaze upon their final moments.
When the circus is re-established as Medici Family Circus with a new policy to not include wild animals performing, a facility known as "Milly Farrier's World of Wonders" is built while Joe rides on a bronco made of circus acrobats while Holt and Colette perform in the re-established circus riding on the horse where Max Medici describes Holt as a future cowboy.