Dee Bradley Baker Voices All The Clones in ‘The Clone Wars’; Here’s What It’s Like For Him
The Clone Wars wouldn’t be anything without its clones, of course. They were introduced in Attack of the Clones when Obi-Wan Kenobi headed to Kamino and stumbled upon the army Master Sifo-Dyas commissioned. While they are massive parts of the conflict between Episode II and Episode III: Revenge of the Sith, they’re part of the background in the movies. However, The Clone Wars gives them personalities, individualizes them, and brings them to the front. A lot of that is thanks to Dee Bradley Baker, who voices every single one of them.
Dave Filoni said it’s ‘exhausting’ for Dee Bradley Baker to do all those voices
In an interview with Entertainment Weekly on March 2, supervising director and executive producer for the show, Dave Filoni, talked about how Baker has a great talent to be able to do all the voices that he does. “He has a unique skill where he’s able to lend his voice to the individual nature of these characters,” Filoni said. “You forget it’s one guy doing it.”
As one can imagine, it’s also a difficult undertaking for Baker, “And I can tell you, it’s exhausting for him. Being inside one character’s mind is exhausting,” Filoni expressed. “And I can’t imagine what it’s like when he’s in a whole squad of guys. And he’s got to keep the energy up and he’s got to keep the conflict up. And he’s arguing with himself.”
Dee Bradley Baker really tries to differentiate the Clone troopers
Baker spoke with io9 in February and admitted that it’s just him speaking to himself when he has storylines that are clone-centric. In order to make it successful and differentiate the specific clones, he has to convey their personalities in the script.
“With the Bad Batch arc, in particular, I’m not only separating the more straight-ahead clones, but I’ve also got this new batch of specially mutated clones,” he said about the mutated clones in Season 7. “But with the good writing we have and the great directing under Dave [Filoni]’s watchful eye, I can keep it nice and specific. It’s easy enough to jump between the groups because I can see it all mapped in my mind with the script I’m reading.”
The Bad Batch was a little easier than regular clones
Because the Bad Batch consists of mutated clones with special abilities and a bit different looks, their voices and personalities are also so different from each other that it was a bit easier for Baker to get into those voices. “He and I over the years have had different ways to remember clones,” Filoni said. “When we were in the series we had certain words that would be like triggering for each of the clones — what their key personality was. The Bad Batch is a little easier, you know, because they’re so different.”
Baker said that he needed a little guidance at first, but, again, the script helped. Plus, Baker said he was given a little more “leeway” with these mutant Clone troopers.
“I had freedom to crack these characters further away from that which, in a way, makes it easier to jump from one to the other,” Baker said. “It seems like it would make it more difficult but it actually makes it easier.”