Veteran voiceover actor John DiMaggio didn’t exactly quote his Futurama robot character, Bender, about biting his shiny metal posterior, but he made it clear why he didn’t sign onto Hulu’s just-announced continuation of the show.
As reported, original cast members including Katey Segal, Phil LaMarr and Billy West signed on to the new project, but DiMaggio declined, over what was called a salary dispute.
On Twitter, DiMaggio, who also voiced Jake the dog on the beloved Emmy-winning animated series Adventure Time, explained the situation.
“Bender is part of my soul & nothing about this is meant to be disrespectful to the fans or my Futurama family,” the actor noted in part, adding, “it’s about self-respect.”
“I don’t think only I deserve to be paid more. I think the entire cast does,” John wrote, explaining he’s “tired of an industry that’s become far too corporate and takes advantage of artists’ time & talent.”
While DiMaggio admits he’s “still hoping for the best” in the situation — and show creators Matt Groening and David X. Cohen are reportedly trying to get him back into the fold — the actor expressed, “Negotiations are a natural part of working in show business….Some accept offers and some hold their ground.”
In the meantime, Hulu was reportedly searching for a soundalike for Bender Bending Rodriguez.
DiMaggio also added, “Thanks again for the love everyone,” explaining he’s about to start shooting AMC’s Interview with the Vampire series, “and very grateful to be!”
The six-time Emmy-winning Futurama ran on Fox from 1999 to 2003, then re-launched on Comedy Central from 2008 to 2013. The show saw West playing Phillip J. Fry, a slacker pizza guy who gets accidentally frozen in the year 2000, only to wake up in a very different 2099.
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