While actors John Boyega, Daisy Ridley, Oscar Isaac and Adam Driver are the new faces of “Star Wars: the Force Awakens,” many are forgetting about the series’ most popular new character, the droid BB-8. While the practical effects robot seemed like a clever little beeping companion to the characters, it turns out that two very familiar faces lent their voice talents to the droid.
While it would have been easy to simply recreate the series of sophisticated beeps and whistles that sound designer Ben Burtt previously crafted for R2-D2, director J.J. Abrams apparently went the extra mile with comedians Bill Hader (“Saturday Night Live”) and Ben Schwartz (“Parks and Recreation”). According to Hitfix, the premiere of “The Force Awakens” allowed reporters to get a glimpse at the film’s credits for the first time and the outlet noticed something odd in them for BB-8. Both comedians were listed as “vocal consultants” on the character. When asked what being a vocal consultant consists of, Hader told the outlet:
“J.J. [Abrams] f---ing around with this sound effects app on his iPad that was attached to a talk box operated by me. It looked ridiculous but it made BB-8’s voice. At first I tried doing a voice, but we all agreed it sounded too human.”
With Hader’s vocals not cutting it all the way, the production apparently brought in the highly animated voice of Schwartz, who fans may remember as the borderline insane character Jean-Ralphio Saperstein on “Parks and Recreation.” Together, they apparently locked down the funny little droid’s vocal performance and their final cut made it into the movie. Schwartz, a “Star Wars” fan in his own right, later took to Twitter to confess that he’d been keeping the secret all along. He also posted an Instagram photo showing his personal IMDB page updated with the new credit -- although it seems to have been removed since.
You're looking at a bonafide BB8 voice over consultant. And nothing makes me happier. This movie is amazing. https://t.co/AHRKAvRUHT
— Ben Schwartz (@rejectedjokes) December 15, 2015
— Ben Schwartz (@rejectedjokes) December 16, 2015
“Star Wars: The Force Awakens” hits theaters on Dec. 18 nationwide, but it’s already picked up some acclaim on Twitter following its star-studded premiere. Fans have only a limited amount of time to get caught up on everything they need to know about the “Star Wars” universe and where it previously left off before they venture out to theaters to catch the new film.