Lin-Manuel Miranda made a name for himself with his musical In the Heights, but then blew Broadway and the world at large away with his brilliant musical Hamilton, based on the life of Alexander Hamilton. Since then, Miranda has worked on music for Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and songs for Disney’s Moana. Today, it was announced he will be joining a third Disney property: the newly rebooted DuckTales cartoon. Miranda will be voicing the role of Gizmo Duck!
In the original DuckTales cartoon, Gizmo Duck was a touch of superhero added into the show in order to provide a new direction for stories. The hero was actually Fenton Crackshell, a verbose and clumsy accountant who often tried too hard to sound impressive in order to hide his insecurities. An accident led to him obtaining a high-tech suit designed by Scrooge McDuck’s inventor-on-call Gyro Gearloose. All he had to do was shout “Blathering Blatherskite,” and the armor would wrap around him and activate.
With the armor, Fenton became Gizmo Duck, Scrooge’s top security guard who sometimes found himself in the role of superhero. In the original cartoon, he was voiced by Hamilton Camp, who then voiced him for several guest appearances the character made in the show Darkwing Duck.
Now, Lin-Manuel Miranda is stepping behind the microphone. In recognition of the actor’s ethnicity, and to add some inclusivity to the cartoon, the new version of Gizmo Duck has brown feathers and his real name is Fenton Crackshell-Cabrera. Similarly, Scrooge McDuck, who is Scottish, is now played by genuine Scottish actor David Tennant.
Feathers and a last name extension aren’t the only changes to Fenton. Instead of being a literal beancounter turned accountant, the reboot Fenton is an intern working for Gyro Gearloose. How he’ll acquire the suit and identity of Gizmo Duck remains to be seen, but many are already excited by this casting choice.
The new DuckTales debuts this summer on Disney XD.