A blog about Star Wars autographs, celebrities and news from a galaxy far far away
“It’s a trap” is one of the most known and quoted phrases of the star Wars universe. The short ominous phrase wouldn’t be so famous if it wasn’t for the voice that utters it: Ercik Bauersfeld. The voice behind Admiral Ackbar didn’t scream in panic or despair (even though the odds were against him). He just made a statement; many would say even an obvious one, to warn the Rebel fleet of their impending doom. That, in my opinion is what made the phrase the most remembered from Return of the Jedi.
Sadly Erick Bauersfeld passed away recently, on April 3th, 2016. He will always be remembered by his fans for his work and charisma.
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Erick Bauersfeld not only voiced Admiral Ackbar in Episode VI, he also voiced the infamous Bib Fortuna, the Twi'lek that served as Jabba the Hutt’s majordomo. Although Bib’s dialogue is in Huttese, he used a completely different tone of voice and even sounds different. For a while I didn’t even notice it was the same voice actor (how could I, since for a few years his work in Episode VI went uncredited). That is what made him great. He had this ability to bring the characters to life using his voice. Lucky for us, the powers that be at Lucasfilm/Disney brought him back to reprise his role as the voice of Admiral Ackbar in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Seeing some of the classic characters in the film gave us a major sense of continuity. Bringing Han, Chewie, Leia, Luke, etc. back was great. But what made a big different in my opinion where those other characters like Admiral Ackbar and Nien Nunb. It’s kind of cool knowing they never stopped protecting the galaxy. Neither did they settle for a political job.
Erick also reprised his role as Ackbar for the games Star Wars: X-wing and Battlefront Elite Squadron. He had said in interviews that he got both the roles (Ackbar and Fortuna) almost by mistake. He also admitted that he knew nothing about Star Wars at the time he was asked to voice Admiral Ackbar, so he asked for a picture of the character. When he saw the picture he said “well, he’s a fish” and laughed. He imagined the voice of Ackbar as if he had a little bit of water in his mouth. And that is how one of the most legendary voices in the Star Wars universe was born.
Erick had a prominent career as a radio drama actor which includes a radio version of Lord of the Rings and the Black Mass radio series. He also did some voices for movies like A.I Artificial Intelligence and Crimson Peak. He also appeared as himself in several documentaries.
As a Star Wars fan and an autograph collector, meeting those who make the Star Wars universe possible is a dream come true. My family and I had the chance to meet him last year at Rhode Island Comic Con. He was number one on my list. I was lucky to get to him early (later he was swarmed with fans) and spent a few minutes talking to him. Everybody (fan or not) can tell you that he was a great guy and fun to talk with. But I will always remember him fondly for the attention he gave to my kids and the patience he had with them. My kids were exited to meet Admiral Ackbar, and you know, exited kids can be overwhelming. But not for him, he talked to them and even cracked a joke with my son. You can tell he was a great father and grandfather too. He then posed for a picture with us and autographed an action figure for my collection.
Later that year, when my wife and me were at the premiere of The Force Awakens, although I didn't know Erick was in the movie, I immediately recognized his voice and started applauding. I was just happy to know he was back for the new installment of the saga.
He will be missed. He is one with the force now.