The future looks bleak for Rick and Morty after Adult Swim chose to part ways with the show’s animator and lead voice actor, Justin Roiland, for allegations of domestic abuse. Roiland is not only the co-creator of the popular animated comedy series, he also voices both Rick and Morty, which will make it all the more difficult to find his replacement. Once it was announced that Rick and Morty would continue, fans were eagerly sending in their audition tapes to take on the mantle, but Yolo Crystal Fantasy and Smiling Friend‘s Michael Cusack, who also did a full Rick and Morty parody in Bushworld Adventures, might be the frontunner for Roiland’s replacement.
Although it doesn’t look all that promising for Rick and Morty, fans are forgetting one crucial fact: the titular characters have had different voice actors before. In May 2022, it was announced that Adult Swim had commissioned an anime spin-off series based on Rick and Morty, expected to last 10 episodes. Although it has ties to the series and will be references main events, Rick and Morty: The Anime is an entirely stand-alone project. Rick and Morty: The Anime will be based on multiple anime shorts, including Rick and Morty vs. Genocider and Summer Meets God (Rick Meets Evil), both spearheaded by the acclaimed Tower of God director Takashi Sano, who will also be directing the spin-off series with Telecom Animation Film producing.
In the shorts, Rick and Morty’s voices are provided by Youhei Tadano and Keisuke Chiba, respectively. Tadano previously provided the voices for Chushin in Naruto: Shippūden (2010), Professor Ochanomizu in Go Astro Boy Go! (2019), and Sebastian in Yu-Gi-Oh! Sevens (2020), but perhaps his most famous role is Gen in the Street Fighter franchise. As for Chiba, he has yet to claim another role besides Morty in the anime shorts, but he’ll no doubt have his breakout performance in Rick and Morty: The Anime.
It might not be Adult Swim’s mainstream show, but it’s a glimmer of hope that Justin Roiland isn’t the only person capable of voicing Rick and Morty. There’s young talent out there just begging for the chance of a lifetime, so Adult Swim really has the pick of the pond with this recasting.