Autobots 101: Secrets of voicing Optimus Prime

Contributed by
Sep 25, 2017

"I am Optimus Prime. To save Earth, we must go to Cybertron and destroy Quintessa."

That epic imperative is just one of many that Optimus Prime uses to rally his Autobot troops in the last of Michael Bay's robots-in-disguise blockbusters, Transformers: The Last Knight. As I learned at a special Transformers press day on the Paramount lot for the home video release of the film, it takes a special je ne sais quoi bot to pull off the right gravitas to vocalize a Transformer.

Before I walked into the ADR booth for the opportunity to loop some dialogue, I got some tips on how to embody a robot from the experts. Legendary voice artists Peter Cullen (Optimus Prime) and Frank Welker (Megatron, Soundwave) have each voiced their respective characters for the last 33 years, and offered me some robotic insight. And even The Last Knight cast members Santiago Cabrera (Santos) and Isabela Moner (Izabella) chimed in on why the right robot intonations can make or break the moment.

Have a look at my adventures in ADR below as I put my own spin on, perhaps, Optimus Prime's voice of the future.

Transformers: The Last Night is available on DVD and Blu-ray today.

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