Bringing many of the characters from Star Wars to life is a true joint effort. In addition to the actors, there are dozens of special effects wizards, costume designers, and animatronic puppeteers needed to make all those creatures and droids believable. Many would credit robotic masters with creating the galaxy’s newest favorite droid, BB-8, but it turns out there’s actually a familiar face behind the rolling little guy.
Drew McWeeny of HitFix was one of the few to stay around for the credits during a screening of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and he caught something no one seemed to pick up on. It turns out that comedian Bill Hader is credited as BB-8’s “Vocal Consultant” alongside House of Lies and Parks and Recreation actor Ben Schwartz. Of course, BB-8 speaks in little more than beeps and bloops, but as McWeeny found out, Hader actually helped perfect those sounds.
“J.J. [Abrams] fucking around with this sound effects app on his iPad that was attached to a talk box operated by me,” Hader told HitFix when asked what consulting entailed. “It looked ridiculous but it made BB-8’s voice. At first I tried doing a voice, but we all agreed it sounded too human.”
It’s unknown how much we hear in the movie is actually either Hader or Schwartz, but it wouldn’t be the first time the former’s voice made it into one of Abrams films. He also provided the voice of the USS Vengeance’s computer in Star Trek Into Darkness.