Sam Witwer Told Lucasfilm They Were ‘Making a Mistake’ If They Didn’t Cast Him because the Voice of Maul in ‘Solo: A Star Wars Story’

by Jeremy Spirogis
(L) Sam Witwer speaks at a panel at Star Wars Celebration 2019 in Chicago, IL/(R) Maul prepares to fight Ahsoka in

Maul, previously often known as Darth Maul, is likely one of the most advanced characters in all of Star Wars. He’s additionally recognized for having among the finest entrances ever. Not solely did followers suppose he was gone for good after The Phantom Menace — with him lower in half, and all the things — however then nobody anticipated him to point out up in Solo: A Star Wars Story. Yet he did, and his Shadow Collective had a significant function within the movie, too. What’s even cooler about that cameo is that Sam Witwer voiced him, as he does on The Clone Wars. But that just about wasn’t the case. 

(L) Sam Witwer speaks at a panel at Star Wars Celebration 2019 in Chicago, IL/(R) Maul prepares to fight Ahsoka in 'Star Wars: The Clone Wars' Season 7
Sam Witwer at Star Wars Celebration 2019 in Chicago, IL/Maul in Episode 10, Season 7 of ‘Star Wars: The Clone Wars’ | Daniel Boczarski/FilmMagic/Disney+

Originally, Maul was going to be voiced by Peter Serafinowicz, who voiced him in ‘The Phantom Menace’

In a brand new interview with Star Wars Holocron weblog, Witwer opened up about how he wasn’t at all times going to be the voice of Maul in Solo. In truth, it was initially going to be Peter Serafinowicz, who voiced him in Star Wars: Episode I — The Phantom Menace. Ray Park performed the live-action, bodily model of Maul in each films and was the movement seize physique mannequin for Maul’s battle scenes in Season 7 of The Clone Wars

However, Witwer revealed that Serafinowicz wasn’t a superb match for this Maul, so a few years later. Witwer implies that Serafinowicz was forged once more due to his involvement in Episode I, moderately than Lucasfilm making that call from a storytelling standpoint. He went on to elucidate why it didn’t work anymore with the unique voice of Maul. 

“He’s such a gifted, gifted man and I love the hell out of his work, but it surely was not recognizably the character and it wasn’t even recognizably The Phantom Menace character. It was a really completely different factor and so they weren’t getting the best stuff.”

Witwer thought he’d be finest for continuity functions and since the viewers knew him as Maul

One of the principle explanation why Witwer thought he’d be the perfect match to voice the live-action Maul is straightforward: he’s performed him for years and hardcore followers would inform the distinction. He defined that one camp of followers received’t even know Maul got here again after Obi-Wan Kenobi sliced him in half in The Phantom Menace. So Witwer mentioned the viewers members Solo wanted to attraction to right here have been those that knew Witwer’s Maul. 

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“Since you’re leaning on the fans who understand what the Shadow Collective is, and the way you want to construct the scene where you want to hear his voice and then see him, doesn’t that serve to reason that the fans have to recognize the voice?” Witwer mentioned. “It’s probably got to be me, and not to mention I’ve been playing the guy for a decade.”

In an interview with Collider on April 1, 2019, Serafinowicz mentioned he wasn’t informed concerning the casting change till a few days after the premiere of the film. 

Witwer ‘put his foot down’ when he noticed sure issues within the script

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There was initially growling written into the script and that’s when Witwer put his “foot down” about casting him within the function and likewise writing it from a greater perspective, nearer to who the precise character of Maul was. 

“So I did run the math and said, in this case, I’m actually going to play a card I haven’t played with Lucasfilm before and say, ‘You’re making a mistake if you don’t go for me,’” Witwer mentioned. “Now, do whatever you have to do, try out whatever you have to try out, but I think you’re making a mistake if you don’t get me in there.”

Witwer did level out that he was creating Maul “under George Lucas and Dave Filoni,” principally being the knowledgeable on him and already having the voice-acting credit score. And he mentioned he had lots of people behind him, backing him up for the function within the movie. And when Maul wasn’t hitting fairly proper in Solo, earlier than scrapping that cameo, they listened to those that introduced up Witwer’s identify, and it lastly labored.

Once Witwer was employed within the function, reshoots needed to occur as a result of it wasn’t in line with the character

It appeared like not everybody on the manufacturing aspect of the film knew about The Clone Wars and Witwer’s involvement with it. Ron Howard, the director of Solo didn’t know that George Lucas had personally labored on it, that it was his “baby” as Witwer put it. But as soon as he did, he introduced Witwer on because the voice of Maul. But reshoots needed to be accomplished as a way to absolutely repair the issues they have been having with Maul’s cameo. 

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“People like me and Dave Filoni were letting them know there were a lot of details that weren’t consistent,” Witwer defined about why reshoots needed to occur. “That’s not me saying these people didn’t know what they were doing because they were making a movie and doing it at lightspeed.” 

In the top, Witwer needed to emphasise that he wasn’t bashing those who labored on the film or Serafinowicz. “It simply didn’t sound recognizable because the character from The Phantom Menace nor the character from Clone Wars. It was a completely completely different factor. They wanted individuals to acknowledge the voice, so there it’s.”

That cameo in Solo might be one of many coolest surprises in current Star Wars reminiscence, and it wouldn’t be Maul with out Witwer, as he additionally expertly proves within the Siege of Mandalore.

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