Will Friedle isn’t any stranger to voicing dangerous guys, however most of the time he’s forged to play heroes. Within the new Teen Titans Go! & DC Tremendous Hero Ladies: Mayhem within the Multiverse crossover animated movie, he will get to have it each methods taking part in not solely Lex Luthor but additionally the King of Atlantis himself, Aquaman. Whereas Luthor continues to be recognizably the vainglorious and energy hungry genius on this planet of DC Tremendous Hero Ladies like he’s at all times been, Aquaman has been reinterpreted as a laid-back seashore bum with a voice that’s clearly impressed by Matthew McConaughey‘s distinct drawl.
We had the fortune to speak with Will Friedle about not solely his twin roles as Lex Luthor and Aquaman but additionally his new I Hear Voices podcast together with his former Kim Potential co-star Christy Carlson Romano.
Taimur Dar: As many followers are effectively conscious, Lex Luthor began out within the comics as a mad scientist however he was reinvented within the ‘80s as a company businessman within the vein of Gordon Gecko. What’s been actually fascinating is within the final 10-15 years, Lex Luthor has moved away from that Wall Avenue picture and extra in the direction of somebody out of Silicon Valley like Mark Zuckerberg or Elon Musk. I’m curious if that concept of the Silicon Valley tech bro knowledgeable your efficiency for Luthor?
Will Friedle: No, probably not. I feel he’s a cool mixture of Michael Rosenbaum from Smallville as a result of he’s youthful and Gene Hackman. We’re doing a a lot lighter model of Lex and when you can definitely see flashes of the evil genius. He’s nonetheless navigating being an adolescent or slightly older together with his household’s firm. It was extra that type of vibe than the tech mogul. I like how they at all times revamp Lex Luthor to be the villain de jour with regards to what it’s that’s taking up the globe precisely such as you mentioned from Gordon Gecko to a Silicon Valley type of sociopath who’s now Lex Luthor.
Dar: You’ve performed your share of villains however I feel it’s protected to say most individuals affiliate you with taking part in heroes like Batman Past/Terry McGinnis, Lion-O, Nightwing, or Bumblebee from Transformers. Do you end up sought primarily for heroic characters and is it refreshing to play villains?
Friedle: It’s so totally different for me. As you have been saying, I’m at all times the nice man or younger hero. It’s a totally totally different vibe for me and one which I like. Any time I can step out of my consolation zone is nice. Folks at all times ask me, “In case you may play one character who would it not be?” And my reply is at all times Cobra Commander from G.I. Joe. So to have the ability to play a villain is simply the good factor on this planet!
Dar: It solely just lately dawned on me that DC Tremendous Hero Ladies is a mini Kim Potential reunion for you and Nicole Sullivan besides your roles are reversed this time with you because the dangerous man and now she’s the nice man.
Dar: Clearly Mayhem within the Multiverse was recorded remotely however I’m curious when you and Sullivan ever had any periods collectively if you labored on Kim Potential after which later for the primary season of DC Tremendous Hero Ladies?
Friedle: DC Tremendous Hero Ladies we’d run into one another on the sales space. Often she could be leaving as I used to be coming in. [There would be] hugging and saying hey. We by no means really recorded collectively. Kim Potential we recorded collectively on a regular basis. Christy Carlson Romano who performed Kim, I see her on a regular basis and we do a podcast collectively referred to as I Hear Voices. She was in New York on the time at school. I used to be out right here in Los Angeles and I might at all times document with John DiMaggio who performed Drakken and Nicole who was Shego. Often as soon as per week the three of us could be collectively. I bought to know Nicole effectively and she or he’s certainly one of my favourite individuals on this planet. She’s phenomenally proficient. Any time I get to see Nicole is certainly an excellent day.
Dar: On the flipside, you additionally voice Aquaman who debuted within the second season. I actually love this seashore bum take that’s clearly a Matthew McConaughey impression. Was McConaughey within the description for the character or was that solely your concept?
Friedle: They have been speaking about surf bum and once I began recording it, it simply got here out as a foul Matthew McConaughey impression. And it simply type of labored. Within the movie when the precise Justice League present up, they’re all type of caricatures of themselves. You’ve bought Superman who may be very a lot the boy scout. Batman is simply mumbling the whole time and you’ll’t perceive him. And also you’ve bought the seashore bum that’s Aquaman. It was a enjoyable pure development to go from there to [Matthew McConaughey voice], “I speak to squids man” vibe. And it appeared to work!
Dar: You talked about John DiMaggio earlier and it jogs my memory how a lot I cherished his take and efficiency as Aquaman in Batman: The Courageous and the Daring cartoon. I do know individuals have a tendency to think about Aquaman as a joke however he actually managed to seize the humor for the character with out making him a buffoon. Because you additionally have been in Courageous and the Daring it’s fairly protected to imagine you’re acquainted with DiMaggio’s Aquaman so I’m curious if that influenced this model in any approach?
Friedle: It didn’t actually have any affect aside from I noticed that you can go as huge as you wished. Johnny is in a league of his personal and also you truthfully simply described John completely. Massive and humorous and never a buffoon is how he did Aquaman and that’s John. John is huge and humorous and never a buffoon. Very good man and uber proficient. And outrageous, to not quote Aquaman however he’s. And he simply completely encapsulates that character. I didn’t wish to lean an excessive amount of into that as a result of he does his personal factor. And man, he does it effectively. These are sneakers I may by no means fill. That’s why I took it a complete totally different route with the McConaughey impression.
Dar: It’s fairly simple to inform when voice administrators like working with sure actors and vice versa. Sam Riegel is extremely busy proper now and so together with his blessing handed the voice directing over to Gene Vassilaros who got here from Nickelodeon casting. Had you labored with Vassilaros earlier than?
Friedle: I had. Gene and I labored for a few initiatives previously and I learn for him a few occasions. Clearly I’ve recognized Sam for a lot of years by way of Essential Position and dealing with him. Going from Sam casting to me to Gene being the director was an easy transition.
Dar: Lastly, as you talked about earlier you’ve just lately teamed up together with your former Kim Potential co-star Christy Carlson Romano to launch your personal podcast I Hear Voices. How did that come about and what’s been the expertise to this point?
Friedle: It’s been nice. It actually has. Christy and I talked about doing one thing collectively and we have been arising on the 20th anniversary of Kim Potential this 12 months. Her factor was, “I actually don’t know sufficient concerning the voiceover business. I must know extra.” I used to be speaking to her and her husband Brendan [Rooney] and I Hear Voices was born. Her husband is a businessman and ex-Marine and when he decides to do one thing it will get performed. He’s simply that man. So once we determined to do that from the time we had the cellphone name, it was three weeks later and we have been sitting in a studio filming and speaking to individuals. It happened in a short time. It’s been a beautiful expertise. I get to speak to all my associates and we get delve into the voiceover facet of the business. I feel the pandemic had rather a lot to do with it, however we’re at a degree the place voiceover actors are rightfully getting their place within the leisure business. A few of these voiceover actors have gotten reputable rock stars in their very own proper. To have the ability to interview them and assist them much more come into the world and let individuals know who and the way proficient they’re has been nice.
Teen Titans Go! & DC Tremendous Hero Ladies: Mayhem within the Multiverse is accessible now on Blu-ray Combo Pack, DVD and Digital.
Followers may also catch the film occasion on Cartoon Community premiering Saturday, Could 28 after which on HBO Max starting June 28.