Saturday, November 16, 2013

'Iron Man' voice actor appreciates his 'fun job'

(Published Nov. 11, PDI-Entertainment)
By Oliver M. Pulumbarit

Prominently featured as super-powered politician Nathan Petrelli in the 2006-2010 sci-fi show “Heroes,” US actor Adrian Pasdar first got noticed in 1986 when he appeared in films such as “Top Gun,” “Streets of Gold” and “Solarbabies.”

He began acting in TV shows and TV-movies, getting roles in “Profit,” “Mysterious Ways” and, yes, “Heroes.” He regularly appears as district attorney Alec Rybak in the teen drama series, “The Lying Game.”
Pasdar, 48, gets to fight power-mad villains once again as the voice actor of iconic comic book hero Iron Man in the animated series, “Marvel’s Avengers Assemble.”

This is not the first time he’s playing the armored Avenger; he first voice-acted Tony Stark two years ago in “Marvel Anime: Iron Man.” He also provided voices for Marvel characters Hawkeye (in “Super Hero Squad,” 2009) and Captain America (in “Black Panther,” 2010).

Excerpts from our recent interview:

Describe a regular recording session for the show.
We have a chance to read the script usually a night or two before we’ve gotten there, so everybody’s read the script, we’re up-to-date on what we need to do, and we have a run at it. There are eight of us usually in the room…in sort of a semicircle standing behind microphones, and the director’s on the other side of the big glass, and we read through the script.

The director [tells] us how he wants us to proceed. It takes four or five hours. And then there’s a follow-up session, usually a few days later. Nine months after that, we come back and do fixes. It’s a long process, but it’s fun. You have to like the people that you’re working with; you spend a lot of time with them.

How was the experience of voicing other cartoon characters helpful to you for this project? 
It’s about having a real love for what you’re doing. A lot of people are involved. Just because I’m doing the voice, you refer to me as Iron Man, but there really are so many people responsible for bringing him to life. I’m just the last element. It’s good to have an appreciation and an understanding of how much work goes into it. There’s also the recording at the end. It’s a lot of fun, getting to the end. It’s a lot of work, but it’s also very, very rewarding.

In your observation, how has the American TV industry changed in the last few years?
I think a paradigm that is shifting is [how people watch] their programs—and the way those programs are being made. Television has had to adapt [but] there’s one good thing that always stays the same—good shows make it. This is always true. It’s just a lot of effort. It takes just as much energy to make a bad show as it does to make a good one, I’ll tell you that.

What’s the secret to consistently playing a character for several episodes?
It’s a long process and it all starts with the writing. If the writing is good, then the actor’s job is much easier. If the writing is bad, then your job’s a lot harder. Being consistent really just means paying attention to the overall theme, the idea of what the writer is trying to get across. It’s a matter of staying in focus and staying on point.

Disney Channel airs “Marvel’s Avengers Assemble” Dec. 23, 24, 26 and 27, 2 to 4 p.m.

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