Dante Basco has said he feels like a real-life Uncle Iroh to the actor playing Zuko in Netflix’s live-action adaptation of Avatar: The Last Airbender. In an interview with The Digital Fix, Basco reflected on his time voicing Zuko, adding that he’s looking forward to seeing what the streaming service does with the series.
“I’m in the Avatar family for life. It’s impacted my life profoundly. I always root for it to do well, root for the story to carry on, because it’s such a strong story,” Basco explained. “So I look forward to what they put together. I got to talk to the new Zuko, Dallas Lou. He’s a cool kid. He wanted to ask me questions about the character some acting stuff. I feel like I became Uncle Iroh talking to him about passing the torch.”
“‘Look, man, we’re small with you, me now, and Dev Patel that got to play him. We’re a small group of actors that got to play this role. It’s your turn, I’m here for you anytime you need me, but at the end of the day, it’s your turn to play it. Go have the time of your life’,” he told Lou. “The story is amazing, so I look forward to it, and I wish them the best in the whole endeavour.”
“I’ve told Mike O’Brien and the creators over the years, ‘Dude, I had no idea what the show was gonna become’,” he admitted. “I was like, ‘What are we doing?’ This is an epic, Asian-inspired, anime-inspired tale about balancing the world, and it’s on Nickelodeon in the afternoons with Spongebob. We all do pilots, and we all do different projects that never see the light of day. Part of me was like, ‘Oh, nobody’s going to see this, it’s not the one for Nickelodeon’, you know?”
Despite Basco’s trepidation, Avatar was a smash hit for Nickelodeon and is widely considered one of the best animated series ever made. Here’s hoping that Netflix can do it justice.