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I think I speak for many of us when I say that any film or TV show can be made instantly better by adding Danny DeVito. Doesn't matter where he is, doesn't matter what the script might be, the actor and comedian is simply a legend, and we love him. Which is why we're pretty personally affronted by the fact that 2019's Borderlands 3 was supposed to feature the celebrity, but it never happened. How dare you deny us this, Gearbox. How dare you.
PlayStation Lifestyle spotted a set of tweets from Gearbox Software CEO Randy Pitchford, which revealed that one NPC in Borderlands 3 was designed to basically be DeVito, but it never came to be. The developer said that he had met the actor on the set of It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia - in which he stars as Frank Reynolds - and had talked about "entertainment and video games and he said he would love to do a character in one of [Gearbox's] games".
Speaking of Gearbox, the studio's next big project is the Borderlands spin-off, Tiny Tina's Wonderlands...
So Pitchford went away and thought about how he could incorporate DeVito into his work, and decided to create a character who appeared as The First Vault Hunter: Typhon DeLeon. If you've played Borderlands 3 then you might know who we mean, and you might already be thinking to yourself that the NPC reminded you of the actor all along. And that's because once Pitchford and the team had dreamed up this character, they wanted DeVito to play him.
Pitchford says: "I cemented the idea of DeVito as the cast and concept art happened (and was amazing) and the character developed. The character perfectly meshed with the story of the Calypso twins and he became this really important, kind of tragic character in the Borderlands." The team wanted the character to not be so much an ordinary hero, but more a "guy doing what he could do. He was unassuming, short, and rough around the edges. A real person".
I got introduced to Danny DeVito during my time there and we went back to his trailer and were talking shop by his trailer between shots. We talked about entertainment and videogames and he said he would love to do a character in one of our games.
- Randy Pitchford (@DuvalMagic) September 13, 2021
When they were doing the table reads for the story, developer Mike Cosner stood in for DeVito while they were working out the kinks in the material and did a great job doing so. Pitchford then reveals that it was difficult to get DeVito into the project after all, because of his team, and finally he just thought that as Cosner had done such a good job that it was just appropriate to hand it to him after all.
Well, Typhon DeLeon was still a highlight to many in Borderlands 3 - and although DeVito never managed to make it into Gearbox's title, we wonder if he's still interested in a voice acting role elsewhere in games.
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