I literally felt like a 10 year old again, standing behind the mic listening to the clients discuss which brands that Lucas had approved of.... that's GEORGE LUCAS, by the way.
I will tell you the backstory first... Two weeks ago, give or take a few days, I received a notice from Studio Center for a Star Wars audition! I was ecstatic... just the chance to get a Star Wars audition had me excited. But our power went out, due to my negligence. My wife had been hospitalized with heatstroke the week before when the bill had come, and I had been so preoccupied with worrying about her that I simply forgot to pay the energy bill. So I frantically called in the energy payment, but they said they couldn't get the electricity back on until around 5:30. The audition was due at 3, plus I had to be at work at 4. It seemed destined not to be... but I never give up! I called the Studio and sadly explained my situation and literally BEGGED that they make an exception just this one time. She managed to pull some strings and then asked, "Why is this so important to you?" To which I exclaimed, "Because it's freaking STAR WARS, man!!!" I told her that if I didn't at least TRY to audition, it would keep me awake countless nights wondering... if I HAD auditioned, would I have got the gig?
Last weeked, I get a call... Tara from booking says she has me booked for a session, then she pauses. "You are gonna be a Star Wars toy!!!" I was completely in awe and overwhelmed! Well, when I got to the studio for my session this past Tuesday, I was a little bummed to find out that I was not going to voice a toy, but rather I was voicing a Star Wars toy COMMERCIAL. It's a national tv ad for The Clone Wars BIG toy - the Turbo Tank. I looked it up and this thing is HUGE. It runs $130 at Toys R Us.
So I got to be Captain Rex... narrating about how the Turbo Tank turned the tide of many battles. The clients were literally blown away. Not only were they impressed with my voicematching, but with my acting ability as well. They said they really believed I WAS Rex telling some new trooper about past battles. They wanted it like a mini-movie and they were VERY pleased with the results. I even managed to help them with some last second script revisions (after they asked for my opinion, of course). I explained that as a father, I didn't think it was wise to include the line "On Ryloth, the droids killed nearly half my men!" One perked up and said, "You are absolutely right and I'm 100% sure that legal will agree with you." I even managed to sneak in an Obi-Wan impression and connected a little with some of the Star Wars fans in the group! =) I also slipped in an Optimus Prime voice because the last line was "Move out!" I said, "I just want to say 'AUTOBOTS, TRANSFORM AND MOVE OUT!'" They laughed and said that was really cool. They were a little distrought that they didn't have more for me to do while they had me in, and I quote "the REX ZONE." I lightheartedly explained that I would be happy to rearrange my "busy" schedule and do more Star Wars stuff for them! Several replied, well, Rex sounds like all the other clones, so there's a good chance we will need you back in the future! I took that as a very good sign.
And the icing on the cake is, not only will my kids get to hear dad on a commercial on Cartoon Network, but I made more than a month's worth of income from my regular job in only 45 minutes at the studio. Needless to say, I am VERY happy about this job... and my inner nerd is REALLY excited to be in a Star Wars commercial!