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King Of The Hill Revival Will Recast Kahn If He Returns, Says Co-Creator-TGN

Summary

  • The King of the Hill revival may recast the character Kahn, acknowledging the debate surrounding White actors voicing characters of different races.
  • Co-creator Greg Daniels confirms that if Kahn returns, Toby Huss will not voice the character, reflecting the changing reality of voice casting.
  • Back in 1997, casting decisions were made based on budget constraints, but now there is a greater emphasis on diversity and representation.


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According to co-creator Greg Daniels, King of the Hill will recast Kahn if the character appears in the revival. First announced in January 2023 and planned for the Hulu streaming service, the upcoming revival will see several actors reprising their voice roles. Those returning include Mike Judge, Kathy Najimy, Stephen Root, Pamela Adlon, and Lauren Tom. The character of Kahn Souphanousinphone, a Laotian man who appears throughout the original, will sound different if he comes back.

Speaking with TVLine, Daniels addressed the subject of recasting Kahn in the King of the Hill revival and confirmed that Toby Huss would not voice the character. Daniels, who created the original with Judge, with the duo executive producing the Hulu series, did not say whether Kahn would appear but candidly discussed the changing reality of White actors such as Huss voicing characters of different races and ethnicities. Read Daniels’ quote below:

“Not sure whether Kahn’s coming back. But I think we would most likely replace Toby’s voice for Kahn. Like, if we were casting today, we wouldn’t have cast him. But we cast it in 1997. most animation casts play multiple roles, and Toby Huss initially played (Hank’s father) Cotton Hill and was cast for that, and then Kahn came up later. And most productions, especially back then, didn’t have the budget to hire a special performer for each voice. But it’s different now.”


There Are Different Layers To The Voice Casting Debate

The question of White actors dominating voice roles and voicing characters of different races and ethnicities gained steam in the last few years. The conversation in the entertainment industry turned to inclusion, both in front of and behind the camera. Shows like Family Guy, Central Park, and others made changes to ensure that White actors were not voicing BIPOC characters.

Dating back to 2017, The Simpsons has been a lightning rod for this particular issue, relating to Apu Nahasapeemapetilon. The convenience store clerk was the subject of a documentary, The Problem with Apu, in which comedian Hari Kondabolu delved into the fact that Apu propagated stereotypes about South Asians. As the controversy remained in the public consciousness, Hank Azaria announced he would no longer voice Apu and has expressed remorse for doing so.

The Simpsons season 29, episode 1, “The Serfsons,” marked Apu’s last speaking role, but he has since appeared as a background character.

Even in cases where the portrayal of the character is neutral, and the representation is not all that meaningful, the crux of the voice-acting debate may be financial. By having White actors voice most characters, casting directors and executives are limiting job opportunities and potential advancement of other groups. Despite the progress made in diversifying on-screen roles and inclusions, those groups remain at an overall disadvantage, which is why King of the Hill is making the right choice.

Source: TVLine

  • King of the Hill TV Poster

    King of the Hill

    Release Date:
    1997-01-12

    Cast:
    Mike Judge

    Genres:
    Sitcom

    Seasons:
    13

    Story By:
    Greg Daniels, greg daniels

    Writers:
    Greg Daniels, Mike Judge

    Network:
    FOX

    Streaming Service:
    Hulu, Disney+

    Directors:
    Greg Daniels, Mike Judge

    Showrunner:
    Greg Daniels

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