You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Stars double as dubbers

DeVito to voice 'Lorax' role in Italian

ROME — When Universal’s “The Lorax” goes out to Italo auds in March, local auds will experience something rare: a Hollywood star dubbing himself in Italian.

Danny DeVito — who voices the titular furry creature in the Dr. Seuss adaptation — will also be dubbing himself in German for the first time.

Usually, local stars are used to dub studio films in their home territories, but this mini-trend of Hollywood talent tackling the lingua franca in which their films are playing seems to have begun in Italy.

Antonio Banderas did his own voiceover track in Italian, and also, naturally, in Spanish, for DreamWorks’ “Shrek” franchise, as well as for Universal’s “Puss in Boots,” which did some $20 million in Italy for U, thanks partly to the dub.

“After Banderas, producer Chris Meledandri proposed that we do the same thing with Danny DeVito in ‘Lorax,’ ” says Paolo Mangiavacchi, Universal Italy film operations director. The point was written into DeVito’s contract.

“Danny speaks some Italian; but less than Antonio,” Mangiavacchi notes. DeVito presumably knows even less German.

But there are ways to provide high-wattage voice talent with a foreign-language speed course of sorts. First a guide track is recorded with a local dubber, which the Hollywood star can work with in an L.A. studio. And local dubbing directors are flown to Los Angeles to supervise and act as voice coaches.

Also, going native is not the point.

In DeVito’s case, his Brooklyn accent remains very strong. “But, within the story, it works; in fact it’s a key element of ‘Lorax’ even in Italian,” Mangiavacchi says. “Whenever you have Hollywood stars willing to do this, it helps us re-create the same flavor as the original.” Even though, he is quick to add, local dubbers are great.

More Film

  • Japan Ramps Up International Film Co-Productions

    Japanese Film Makers Find Opportunities in International Co-Productions

    ROME — When Universal’s “The Lorax” goes out to Italo auds in March, local auds will experience something rare: a Hollywood star dubbing himself in Italian. Danny DeVito — who voices the titular furry creature in the Dr. Seuss adaptation — will also be dubbing himself in German for the first time. Usually, local stars […]

  • Netflix Unveils 'Great Day in Hollywood'

    Netflix Unveils 'Great Day in Hollywood' Image Spot Highlighting Black Creators

    ROME — When Universal’s “The Lorax” goes out to Italo auds in March, local auds will experience something rare: a Hollywood star dubbing himself in Italian. Danny DeVito — who voices the titular furry creature in the Dr. Seuss adaptation — will also be dubbing himself in German for the first time. Usually, local stars […]

  • Kendrick Lamar

    2018 BET Awards Complete Winners List

    ROME — When Universal’s “The Lorax” goes out to Italo auds in March, local auds will experience something rare: a Hollywood star dubbing himself in Italian. Danny DeVito — who voices the titular furry creature in the Dr. Seuss adaptation — will also be dubbing himself in German for the first time. Usually, local stars […]

  • Tom Holland Uncharted

    Tom Holland Reveals 'Spider-Man 2' Title: 'Far From Home'

    ROME — When Universal’s “The Lorax” goes out to Italo auds in March, local auds will experience something rare: a Hollywood star dubbing himself in Italian. Danny DeVito — who voices the titular furry creature in the Dr. Seuss adaptation — will also be dubbing himself in German for the first time. Usually, local stars […]

  • Palm Springs Shortfest Winners List

    'Fauve' Takes Top Prize at Palm Springs International Shortfest

    ROME — When Universal’s “The Lorax” goes out to Italo auds in March, local auds will experience something rare: a Hollywood star dubbing himself in Italian. Danny DeVito — who voices the titular furry creature in the Dr. Seuss adaptation — will also be dubbing himself in German for the first time. Usually, local stars […]

  • The Closing of Magno, the Quintessential

    The Closing of Magno, the Quintessential New York Screening Room

    ROME — When Universal’s “The Lorax” goes out to Italo auds in March, local auds will experience something rare: a Hollywood star dubbing himself in Italian. Danny DeVito — who voices the titular furry creature in the Dr. Seuss adaptation — will also be dubbing himself in German for the first time. Usually, local stars […]

  • (L to R) Owen (CHRIS PRATT),

    'Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom' Tops $700 Million Worldwide

    ROME — When Universal’s “The Lorax” goes out to Italo auds in March, local auds will experience something rare: a Hollywood star dubbing himself in Italian. Danny DeVito — who voices the titular furry creature in the Dr. Seuss adaptation — will also be dubbing himself in German for the first time. Usually, local stars […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content