It was announced recently that Futurama is getting a revival on Hulu with the majority of the cast and crew returning. However, John DiMaggio, who voiced Bender, wasn't initially part of the cast that were returning as the actor stated that he thinks they deserve to be paid more so he didn't sign-up. A lot of fans were worried about the potential recast on the iconic character with some even threatening a boycott. But fortunately, it looks like that won't be the case anymore.
Variety has reported that DiMaggio is officially returning to voice Bender in Hulu's Futurama revival which brings the so-called "#Bendergate" to a close. When his name wasn't initially announced as part of the revival, it seems that the show was planning to recast the role. According to some reports, a producer filled in for the role during the first table read as there was hope that the negotiation between the studio and DiMaggio will end up being resolved.
"I’M BACK, BABY! So damn grateful for the love and support of fans and colleagues alike during this whole time (especially my wife, Kate), and I cannot wait to get back to work with my Futurama family," DiMaggio said in a statement. "#Bendergate is officially over, so put it on the back of a shelf behind Xmas decorations, or maybe in that kitchen drawer with all of the other crap you put in there like old unusable crazy glue, or maybe even put it in a jar you save farts in. Whatever floats your boat, I don’t care, you get the picture. I’M BACK, BABY! BITE MY SHINY METAL ASS!"
It is exciting to hear that DiMaggio is officially on-board to be part of the revival. It is hard to imagine anyone at this point besides him voicing Bender as he has become iconic and brought a lot of gravitas to the role. It also looks like the studio probably gave a raise on his salary which probably led to him finally agreeing to voice Bender. Either way, it's just exciting that Bender won't get recast and DiMaggio is returning to voice him after weeks of tense negotiations.
Besides DiMaggio, also part of the revival are original cast members Billy West, Katey Sagal, Tress MacNeille, Maurice LaMarche, Lauren Tom, Phil LaMarr, and David Herman. Hulu picked up the revival for 20 episodes with production already currently underway.
The Futurama revival is set to premiere in 2023.