Matt Lanter (Anakin Skywalker)

Matt Lanter
Anakin Skywalker (Star Wars: The Clone Wars)
Interview: August 2010

How did you start in the movie and voice acting business?

I did some background extra work for a film called Bobby Jones that shot in Atlanta. After falling in love with the magic of it, I decided to finish out my semester at UGA, save up some money then packed up my car with what I had and drove out to LA to make a career.

Can you tell how you got cast for the Clone Wars series?

It was a standard voice audition for a project that I knew nothing about; just that it was Star Wars something. Dave Filoni was there, as well as Catherine Winder and they asked me to read the copy as a combination of Han Solo and Luke Skywalker. I gave it my best and here I am today!

You were given the tough task to voice an established character since Anakin was featured in the prequels, played by Hayden Christensen. Did you study Hayden’s portrayal of Anakin and his voice a lot to come up with your own version of Anakin?

Of course I watched all the prequel films to gather what I could about Anakin, but I’m not trying to copy a voice performance in any way. George and Dave and I have all chatted about how this Anakin is a bit different than what we have seen in the films and I feel I have the liberty to extend that into voice quality as well. I was cast with my own spin on the character, not as a voice double, so it’s actually really nice not having that pressure like a few of my other cast mates.

How do you look at working on Clone Wars? And do you like the series?

I love working on it and love watching it as a fan too. The cast is great, Dave and a fantastic supervising director and really knows how to work with the actors. We really have a great family feel from the actors to producers to everyone at Lucasfilm. We all have a passion for making the show the best it can be. Every time I watch it, it just blows me away. I am humbled that I’m a part of it.

Were you a fan of the Star Wars movies when you were a kid? When did you saw them for the first time?

I can’t really say I was a fan because I hadn’t seen them all. I actually saw the prequels before I saw the original trilogy, I think around 15 or so. I’m obviously a huge Star Wars geek now though!

Looking at the future: do you want to establish yourself mainly as an actor or as a voice actor? Where do you get the most satisfaction from?

Both. I love doing both for different reasons and I have a passion for both. You have to put yourself and your character in these hard to imagine situations, especially in Star Wars. It’s a great outlet for creativity! On camera is much different. You also get to travel and experience new places and cultures, which is a blast.

What would your dream project be and are there future Star Wars projects you are going to be involved with?

I’m always doing video games as Anakin. As far as other Star Wars projects, who knows… I wouldn’t turn it down, that’s for sure. I’m not sure that I have one dream project. There are a lot of things I want to do in my career.

Please finish the following sentence: “When I look at my work on Star Wars, I…”

Feel lucky and humbled to a part of it.