Stand-up comedian, late night talk show guest extraordinaire, and actor Don Rickles died at the age of 90 in 2017. Despite this, the man responsible for none other than Mr. Potato Head in the first three Toy Story movies will be reprising the role in Toy Story 4. Early Thursday morning, the film’s director, Josh Cooley, confirmed Rickles’ involvement on Twitter: “All of his pieces may be replaceable, but his voice is not. Honored he signed on for TS4, honored he’s in TS4.”
Speaking with Entertainment Weekly later in the day, Cooley explained that Rickles had signed on to do the fourth movie back in 2014. However, since the script was still being written, he wasn’t able to record any dialogue for the part. However, thanks to the blessing (and request) of Rickles’ family, the Toy Story 4 filmmakers would be utilizing dialogue recorded for the previous films to craft a new performance:
“Of course we loved Don obviously, and after he passed, his family contacted us and asked if there was any way that we could create a performance using the recordings that we had,” Cooley tells EW. “Now, he signed to be in Toy Story 4. Unfortunately we did not get a chance to record him for the film. But we went through, jeez, 25 years of everything we didn’t use for Toy Story 1, 2, 3, the theme parks, the ice capades, the video games — everything that he’s recorded for Mr. Potato Head. And we were able to do that. And so I’m very honored that they asked us to do that, and I’m very honored that he’s in the film. Nobody can replace him.”
Rickles’ final bow as Mr. Potato Head is happening this summer in Toy Story 4, which is coming to theaters on June 21st.
(Via Entertainment Weekly)