Futurama may be returning, but the foul-mouthed alcohol-fuelled robot Bender may sound a bit different. John DiMaggio who voiced Bender in the animated series last seven seasons is the only member of the cast who’s yet to sign up for the relaunched TV series.
DiMaggio’s now opened up about his reasons for not returning on Twitter explaining it’s about self-respect. “I’ve been thinking about everything that’s been going on these past months, and just to be clear, I don’t think that only I deserve to be paid more,” DiMaggio wrote. “I think the entire cast does. Negotiations are a natural part of working in show business. Everyone has a different strategy and different boundaries. Their ‘price’. Some accept offers, some hold their ground.”
“Bender is part of my soul, and nothing about this is meant to be disrespectful to the fans or my Futurama family,” he continued. “It’s about self-respect. And honestly, being tired of an industry that’s become far too corporate and takes advantage of artists’ time and talent. Look, I wish I could give you every detail so you would understand, but it’s not my place. Thanks again for the love, everyone. Still hoping for the best.”
That “hoping for the best” perhaps hints that DiMaggio hasn’t completely closed the door on his Futurama future but as things stand it seems we’re just going to have to cope with a weird sounding Bender.
— John DiMaggio (@TheJohnDiMaggio) February 16, 2022
Producers have said they want DiMaggio back but that if he’s not signed up by the time production begins they will recast his characters.
Billy West, Katey Sagal, Tress MacNeille, and the rest of the original voice cast are reportedly all set to reprise their respective roles for the revival. David X. Cohen and Matt Groening, are both returning to lead the production as well.
Futurama’s revival is set to go into production next month so while we wait for news on Bender’s future why not check out our list of the best animated movies.