The following article was originally published on January 15th and has since been updated as new show guests have been announced. Please scroll down for the most recent updates.
I’ll confess that sometimes I will
neglect conveniently forget to post certain news items here.
That would explain what happened when a press release came across the wire with the following headline:
New Show with Cute Guys to Premiere on Nickelodeon!
Let’s face it. I’m almost 40 years old, don’t care for boy bands, and you won’t ever hear me use the words “cute” and “boy” in the same sentence unless I’m giving a compliment to a parent whose baby/toddler is actually a cute kid.
So, yeah…I kinda didn’t post that here when I first got the news mid-October 2009, even though my friend and fellow voice actor fan Doreen (VA webmistress extraordinaire and Voice Actors in the News staff contributor) gave a heads-up that the prolific (and ever-lovely) animation voice actor TaraStrong.com had been cast in a supporting role on “Big Time Rush” as Miss Collins (teacher of the “Palm Woods” school on the show).
So, anyway, Big Time Rush is a new Nickelodeon series about four teenage boys who are cast in a boy band, then move to L.A. and have various sitcomish adventures in Hollywood that will mostly involve flirting with other teenage girls (and being flirted with) while they try to make it as a “serious” performing group.
Oh, and of course there will be music-videoish segments rife with choreography and lip-syncing topop music.
After all, Big Time Rush is Nick’s obvious attempt to revive the “boy band” and thus sell lots and lots of CDs and song/album downloads to their tweenish female viewers.
In other words, it’s like Hanna Montana…but with boys.
Okay, so maybe I’m being a little harsh. After all, I’ve no doubts the show is entertaining to its intended audience. And with it being a bankable, marketable formula it’s already a hit — the TV movie/pilot (promoted as a “special preview”) introducing the series premiered November 28th, 2009 and pulled in an audience of nearly 3.5 million, so I’ll probably take some flak for my sarcasm by publishing it here.
But I also will watch this show — like it or not — and not for the “cute boys,” but because Tara is in it.
And if you require further motivation to watch the show (besides the “cute boys”), voice actor James Arnold Taylor (Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Johnny Test, Drawn Together) announced 1.14.2010 via Twitter:
I’ve got a “On-Camera” job tomorrow. Meaning I won’t be doing voice, I’ll be playing a part, “Live” my face and my voice. It’s for my good friend Scott Fellows (The creator of Johnny Test) new show called, Big Time Rush. I will have just a couple lines in the middle of the show but should be great fun to do it. And when it’s on I will let you all know.
Update 5.01.2010 — Taylor guest stars as “Regional Manager Taylor” in episode 8 “Big Time Demos” [<– click to watch online] which also features an appearance by VA Daran Norris (The Fairly Odd Parents) as groundskeeper/maintenance guy “Buddah Bob.”
Big Time Rush airs Fridays on Nick at 8:30 PM (EST) with repeats throughout the weekend. Visit Zap2it.com for air dates of other upcoming episodes. The show and “band” also have official pages on Twitter, Facebook, MySpace and YouTube which you can find linked through their official site: BigTimeRushTV.com.
Update: 1.20.2010, 9:40 AM — I’ve gotten confirmation (thanks to Doreen and Paul’s comments below) that Tara Strong appears as Miss Collins in episode #2 “Big Time School of Rocque” [<– click to view online] which also includes yet another guest-star voice actor Dee Bradley Baker (Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Phineas & Ferb) as teacher Mr. Smitty.
And you can also watch/download this episode on iTunes.
Tara first appears around the 2:28 mark and Dee at 3:25, and they appear other times throughout the episode as well.
And here’s a clip featuring just Baker’s first appearance:
I’ve discovered a few other animation/voice actor-related connections with this series.
James Arnold Taylor’s comment above mentions Scott Fellows (creator of CN’s Johnny Test), who is credited as the series’ creator and also serves as executive producer and writer. (Fellows has also written/produced episodes for The Fairly Odd Parents.)
Co-producer for Big Time Rush is Jed Springarn who has also produced and/or written episodes of Back at the Barnyand (for which he also was voice director), Jimmy Neutron, Johnny Bravo, Histeria!, Pinky and The Brain, Duckman, Freakazoid! and The Tick.
The director of the “School of Rocque” episode is Savage Steve Holland, who was the co-creator/producer/writer of Eek! The Cat (with Bill Kopp) in which he also voiced Elmo the Elk, Doc Tari in The Terrible Thunderlizards segments, and various incidental characters. Holland was also producer/writer/voice director for Sabrina: The Animated Series.
Update… actually, several updates between May and August, 2010 — The VA cameos on this show just keep on coming:
– Phil LaMarr (Futurama, Justice League, Samurai Jack) guest stars as Hawk along with American Idol winner Jordan Sparks in episode 14 “Big Time Sparks” and again in the one-hour season 1 finale “Big Time Concert” which premieres Friday, August 20th at 8 PM (EST).
– Daran Norris (The Fairly Odd Parents, The Replacements, The Spectacular Spider-Man) has an amusing recurring role as groundskeper/maintenance guy “Buddah Bob” in episodes #3 “Big Time Bad Boy” [<– click to view online], #7 “Big Time Break” [not available online] (which also includes Sealab 2021‘s Erik Estrada as Officer Garcia), #8 “Big Time Demos” [<– click to view online], #15 “Big Time Fever,” and #16 “Big Time Video.”
Note: “Big Time Bad Boy” also contains what I believe is a direct reference to EEK! The Cat’s catchphrase “Kum bah ya!” as said by a music label executive after getting kicked in the groin.
– Carlos Alazraqui (Jimmy Neutron, Camp Lazlo, The Fairly Odd Parents) guest stars as “Photographer Marcos” in episodes #6 “Big Time Photo Shoot” [<– click to view online] and #16 “Big Time Video.”
– Ahmed Best (voice of Jar Jar Binks in the Star Wars movie prequels and Clone Wars series) guests as “Marketer” in the pilot episode “Big Time Audition” [full episode not available online, although he appears briefly in this music video] and again in episode 11 “Big Time Blogger” [<– click here to view online].
– Wikipedia.com credits Rob Paulsen (Animaniacs, Pinky & The Brain) as “C.A.L.” for episode 10, “Big Time Jobs,” but I have not yet seen this episode to confirm if he actually appears or just provided a voice for the character.
And Tara Strong reprised her role as Miss Collins in episode #13 “Big Time Dance” and will guest star a third time in season 2 (for which production started in July 2010). We are also pleased to offer an exclusive photo gallery of Tara’s pictures from the set of Big Time Rush from episode #13 and an upcoming episode for season 2:
~ Craig “Voiceroy” Crumpton
Publisher: Voice Actors in the News
Retraction — 5.04: I originally posted that Mike Judge (King of the Hill, Beavis & Butthead) and Amy Poehler had supporting roles BTR (playing a married couple appropriately named “Mike Judge, Sr” and “Nicole Judge”), which I got from a press release. I’m going to assume that this just didn’t work out as either has yet to appear on the series. And the press release is no longer available online.
Related post: 7.14.2009 — Tara Strong on Batman, Chowder, Drawn Together Movie