If you’ve watched an animated show or film in the last 40 years, you’ve probably heard the voice of Frank Welker. This startling versatile voice actor has been creating characters for decades, from characters like Fred from Scooby Doo to Nibbler in Futurama, to a veritable menagerie of animal sounds and effects for films like Up! and the original Dr. Dolittle.
For those in the know, there’s one role he’s particularly associated with: the raspy-voiced villain Megatron, having given life to the character over two decades ago, and keeping him going through various reboots of the series, as well as in games and the recent big-budget films. We’ll be getting a double-dose of Welker’s Megatron with his return to the robot that was once a gun that would be king in the forthcoming second feature sequel, Transformers: Dark of the Moon, to the new animated series, Transformers Prime, which will be paying homage to elements of the Generation 1 series and movie while crafting new fiction for fans of the series.
Transformers Prime begins airing new episodes on Hasbro’s The Hub (you can find more details on their site Hubworld, and read MTV Movies Blog's interview with "Transformers Prime " producer Bob Orci) on February 11 at 6:30PM ET., an in honor of the return of the series, Mr. Welker was kind enough to answer a few questions about his diverse career for MTV Geek.
MTV Geek: It’s been well over 25 years that the Transformers franchise has been around. What keeps bringing you back to Megatron after all this time?
FW: You know, the great thing about it is that the fanbase tends to support some of the earlier voices from back in the G1 days. And I think that that’s been a driving force that’s let the powers know that they like those characters and they like voices. So when people start casting some of the newer versions, they try to remember some of us from the earlier versions and [try to] see if we work in these new iterations.
I think, first of all, that this would be the call of the studios or whatever, and I’m pretty much identified as Megatron, so when the call comes I’m more than happy and ready to go.
Geek: Does that need for continuity influence what you bring to the role whenever you return to Megatron in each new iteration of the franchise and the character?
FW: Well, you know, that’s an excellent question because early on, when I was trying to get the role and separate myself from the other actors and just come up with something unique, in the very original G1 version I kind of came up with the very scratchy—MEGATRON! [in the G1 voice]—that people sort of latched on to. And that has sort of been [the way] all along. Read More...