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Yes, it's true: I'm a geek

I might as well show my geekiness now, because my inner geek sprang out and started doing really bad cartwheels around the room when I read the following bit of information: Peter Cullen will be the voice of Optimus Prime in the new Transformers live-action movie being helmed by Michael Bay!

If you aren't excited about that piece of news, then let me fill you in. Mr. Cullen is somewhat of a legend in animation voicing. Going way back to The Jetsons in the sixties, on to such notable series as The Smurfs, G.I. Joe, Venger in the classic Dungeons and Dragons, and pretty much every Disney animated series since DuckTales.

In the early eighties, a new animated series bowed that would begin to change the face of American animation forever. That series was the original Transformers. Cullen lent his vocal talents to a number of characters on the series, but none so memorable as the leader of the courageous Autobots, Optimus Prime. His striking vocal talents made Optimus's voice as memorable and recognizable as James Earl Jones's Darth Vader. Cullen continued to voice Optimus in the Transformers' big-screen debut. But, not long afterwards, the series ended. For many Transformers fans, he will always be Optimus Prime. But, when Hasbro decided to resurrect the Transformers brand with Mainframe's excellent Transformers: Beastwars, it wasn't Cullen that voiced the leader Optimus Primal, but Mainframe regular Gary Chalk. Chalk's Optimus sounds a lot like Cullen's, so many people have never known the difference.

So, when it was announced at Comic-Con this week that Peter would be returning as Optimus in the new movie, Transformers fans around the world (or at least those gathered at Comic-Con) gave a cheer. Peter has come home again. Optimus is in good hands (or, at least his voice is). Don't screw this up, Mr. Bay.

Posted on July 22, 2006 at 10:24 pm
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