The Simpsons introduced final summer time that the present was in for a casting shakeup, as white actors would now not be voicing characters of shade on the present, together with characters like Apu, Carl, and Dr. Hibbert. The brand new Dr. Julius Hibbert has been forged, according to Deadline; Kevin Michael Richardson will play the character shifting ahead, changing actor Harry Shearer for the function. He’ll take over the function beginning with the episode scheduled to air on Sunday, February 28, 2021.
Richardson is a veteran voice actor with over 30 years and over 500 credit to his identify. He is voiced characters within the DC and Marvel universes, in addition to Star Wars, Transformers, Mortal Kombat, Household Man, and lots of others. He additionally has 76 episodes of the Simpsons below his belt, going again so far as 2009.
Actor Harry Shearer started voicing Dr. Hibbert when he debuted over 30 years in the past, and in addition plays–and will proceed to play–other main characters together with Ned Flanders, Principal Skinner, and Mr. Burns. Shearer’s final episode voicing Hibbert aired final evening, February 21.
Illustration within the casting of voice actors, particularly on the Simpsons, started receiving extra consideration at the very least way back to 2017, with the discharge of the documentary “The Drawback with Apu.” Although creator Matt Groening was initially dismissive of the criticism–the Simpsons even stoked the flames of the controversy with an episode poking enjoyable at it in 2018–the motion started to select up steam. Since then, white actors have stepped away from enjoying characters of shade in animated reveals from Household Man’s Cleveland Brown to characters on more moderen reveals, like Massive Mouth character Missy.
On the Simpsons specifically, Hank Azaria has already stepped down from voicing Indian character Apu, although Fox has not but introduced new casting for the function. One other Azaria-voiced character, Carl, is now voiced by Alex Désert. Azaria additionally continues to voice characters like Moe, Chief Wiggam, and Super Nintendo Chalmers.
Actor Harry Shearer voiced dissent final August, stating that “the job of the actor is to play somebody who they don’t seem to be,” however added that “individuals from all backgrounds ought to be represented within the writing and producing ends of the enterprise so they assist resolve what tales to inform and with what information. The job is enjoying somebody I am not.”