‘Avatar: The Last Airbender’: This Disney Channel Star Almost Became the Voice of Aang

by Jeremy Spirogis
Avatar The Last Airbender

The second lifetime of Avatar: The Last Airbender has been an thrilling time for longtime followers of the beloved animated sequence. Its arrival on Netflix (together with sequel sequence The Legend of Korra) has created an entire new legion of followers world wide, and Nickelodeon simply commemorated the Avatar renaissance with a one-off particular that reveals never-before-seen footage and unknown details about the present.

One of the largest bombshells in The Last Airbender: Origins is that Aang was initially voiced by an A-list Disney Channel star in an unaired pilot of the present.

Avatar The Last Airbender
‘Avatar: The Last Airbender’ | Courtesy Nickelodeon

Who is the voice of Aang?

In the unique Avatar: The Last Airbender sequence, Aang was voiced by Zach Tyler Eisen. He was round Aang’s age of 12 on the time, making him a pure match to play the goofy younger child. Since Avatar went off the air, nevertheless, Eisen has stored a comparatively low profile. He solely only in the near past gave his first interview in over 10 years, giving followers of the sequence a glance into what Aang would sound like in his mid-twenties and divulging numerous beforehand unknown details about his expertise each on the present and within the years afterwards.

Avatar was Eisen’s most recognizable position, however it wasn’t his first. Prior to becoming a member of Avatar, Eisen had small on-screen roles in movies like 2003’s Marci X alongside Lisa Kudrow and Damon Wayans. He had voice roles in different kids’s reveals like Little Bill, Dora the Explorer, and The Backyardigans earlier than his Avatar breakout in 2005.

After the sequence got here to an finish in 2008, Eisen selected to step again from the limelight and from the performing business basically, confessing in a latest interview that fame was by no means one thing that appealed to him. “I never really had that desire, and that’s part of the reason I’ve been out of the spotlight so long,” he stated. “I kinda just wanted to be a normal kid.” Turns out he and Aang had some issues in widespread.

Disney Channel on Nickelodeon

In the Last Airbender: Origins particular, it’s revealed that Disney Channel star Mitchel Musso performed the voice of Aang within the sequence’ unique pilot. At the time, Musso’s performing résumé was comparatively skinny, his greatest position thus far starring alongside Kyle Massey and Kay Panabaker within the Disney Channel Original Movie Life Is Ruff.

It wasn’t lengthy after Musso dipped his toe within the Avatar world that he was as an alternative forged as one other principal character. His portrayal of Oliver Oken on the Disney Channel smash hit Hannah Montana received over audiences in all places and made Musso the heartthrob of the second. As Oliver, his character wasn’t too far off from Aang: each are children who are sometimes naïve and gullible, and viewers can’t assist however have a comfortable spot for them.

Mitchel Musso arrives at the 2010 American Music AwardsMitchel Musso arrives at the 2010 American Music Awards
Mitchel Musso arrives on the 2010 American Music Awards | Christopher Polk/Getty Images

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Where are they now?

Though Zach Tyler Eisen doesn’t act anymore, he’s nonetheless concerned within the leisure business, saying he’s snug along with his new life “behind the camera these days.” He acknowledges that whereas “the door is mostly closed” to him ever taking up a expertise position—whether or not on-screen or as a voice actor—it’s “still a little ajar.”

Having constructed his profession as a voice actor on Phineas and Ferb concurrently along with his rise on Hannah Montana, Mitchel Musso has steadily been working for the reason that reveals have gone off the air. He’s appeared in motion pictures like 2015’s The Sand and 2018’s Bachelor Lion. And for those who missed listening to his voice, don’t fear: the brand new Phineas and Ferb film, coming to Disney+ subsequent week, will provide you with a style of 2020 Mitchel Musso.

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