There was initially some consternation among Scooby-Doo fans of a certain age that Matthew Lillard, who played Shaggy in the two early noughties live action films, wouldn’t be returning to voice the laid back character for new animated film Scoob!.
Lillard himself said he was ‘bummed’ about not returning, but has given the new cast and crew his blessing. Fans fears will be allayed however when they hear Will Forte (The Last Man on Earth, MacGruber) as Scooby-Doo’s best pal in the new film, which lands on PVOD today, as he brings new life to the fifty-year-plus character.
Forte himself admits to having nerves about taking on the iconic role which was voiced for decades, in the original cartoons, by Casey Kasem.
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“This was very nerve-wracking,” Forte says, “because Shaggy is such an iconic character and I got very much in my head about it.
“Early on, when I was talking with Tony Cervone, the director, I believe he said, ‘Don’t worry too much about doing a spot-on Shaggy impersonation, like the Shaggy of the past.’ I’m not very good with impersonating voices. So that made me feel a lot better.
“He said, ‘Certainly, we want some aspects that sound like classic Shaggy, but we’re not too stuck on it sounding exactly like that.’
“Still, it’s tough because this is such a beloved character for so many people. The show and these characters have been around for what? Fifty-one years now. So there’s just a reverence for the people who have been a part of the history, like Casey Kasem. It’s big shoes to fill, but you just go in and do your best, and it’s an honour to be a part of it.”
Scoob! reveals the never-before-told story of Scooby-Doo’s origins, and how he met Shaggy and how they became part of the crime-solving Mystery Inc. team, which gives Forte the opportunity to tread completely new ground as Shaggy.
“It is such an honour to be a part of this movie in general and, yes, to be a part specifically of that moment where people find out how Scooby and Shaggy met is particularly special,” he says.
Scoob! is out today on premium video on demand.