"A Star Is Born" actor Sam Elliott has joined the popular animated comedy show "Family Guy" and will voice the Mayor of Quahog, replacing Adam West who died in 2017.
Fans of the longest-running animated series will hear Sam Elliott's iconic voice in the Fox-led show starting November. Elliot is famous for his deep, baritone voice in Hollywood movies.
Before the 76-year-old actor took the role, "Batman" star Adam West voiced the eponymous Mayor Adam West in more than 100 episodes of the beloved series.
"A Star is Born" actor Sam Elliott attends the 2003 press conference for the "Masked and Anonymous" film in Park City, Utah. | Photo: Getty Images
After they gave West a tribute episode, executive producer Richard Appel said they took the time searching for a new member of the voice cast, as West was irreplaceable.
It was a challenge for Appel and his fellow co-producers to find an actor deserving of the role as they were looking for someone original, unexpected, and fun like West. He said:
"Sam has a voice that — obviously he's a movie star, but he also has a voice made for the radio, and Sam Elliot quickly became our first choice."
As Mayor of Quahog, Elliott's character will appear on the show as West's cousin from the Wild, Wild West - referencing the Oscar-nominated actor's mark as a Western movie and TV star.
The character, who has the appearance as Elliott in real life, is reported to enter the show after Peter Griffin would hunt him and convince him to be the new mayor.
But before Elliott took the role, he initially turned down the offer as he feared that the part was too imitative. When the showrunners offered the TV role to him again with a different story, Elliott agreed.
Western TV and movie star Sam Elliott and actress Katherine Ross attend the 2015 Annual Critics' Choice Television Awards in Beverly Hills. | Photo: Getty Images
Another reason why the show was not able to replace West was that the late actor had recorded lines for several episodes slated for its next season. It was the show's way of honoring West.
West passed away in June 2017 at the age of 88 after his longtime battle with leukemia. His family announced his death through the actor's Twitter account.
Steve Callaghan, one of the executive producers who wrote the first episode in 2000, which featured West, said they would keep his memory alive by giving the fans more of West in the coming years.
Callaghan expressed that he would miss the late actor's voice. West's role as Mayor Adam West was a memorable and hilarious character and was truly a centerpiece of the series.
Some of West's unforgettable episodes were compiled in a 9-minute video, highlighting his character's joyful and comedic chops and delighting his legion of fans.
The executive producer said that West's vocal performance and the comedic angle he brought to the role was incomparable. It was a gift for the series and its show writers as well.
Behind the popular show "Family Guy" is Seth MacFarlane - one of the most respected directors in Hollywood. But he did not achieve his success overnight.
One interesting fact about MacFarlane is that before he made "Family Guy," he first landed a job as a weekly comic strip writer at the age of nine, an unlikely feat for most children his age.