The fog has lifted, and Zachary Levi has at last shown us the light. The actor — best known to Disney fans for voicing the character of Flynn Rider AKA Eugene Fitzherbert in the 2010 film Tangled — revealed in an interview that a lie actually landed him a role in the film. Levi not only voiced Flynn Rider in the original film, but then reprised his role alongside costar Mandy Moore in Tangled: The Series, which premiered in 2017, Tangled Ever After, and more.
Zachary Levi recently sat down with James Corden for his Late Late Show and told the host that Disney originally wanted a British actor for the role of outlaw Flynn Rider. Tangled — based on the Rapunzel fairy tale — creators have said that the film takes place in the 1780s (although evidence in the films points to the 1830s/40s), so they originally wanted actors with British accents to play the lead roles in the film.
Levi explained to Corden that he has a penchant for doing accents, so his agent told a small, white lie in order to get him an audition. Levi said:
But no, yes, I did. I was in Tangled for Disney which was such an incredible film and experience. They thought Flynn Rider – the role I ultimately played – they wanted him to have an English accent and they wouldn’t even see American actors. Fortunately, my voiceover agent knew that I did a decent English accent and she fought for me and I got in. I might’ve been one of the only Americans to get in there and then they gave me the job.
Levi also revealed that, even though a British actor was originally desired for the role, Disney, for some reason, ended up changing their mind and decided that they wanted Flynn Rider to sound American. That created quite an easy shift for the actor, who is from Lake Charles, Louisiana. Disney also decided to make most of the cast American, which lead to the casting of Mandy Moore as Rapunzel and Donna Murphy as Mother Gothel.
Tangled, Tangled Ever After, Tangled Before Ever After, Rapunzel’s Tangled Adventure, and Tangled: Short Cuts are all available to stream on Disney+. Both Zachary Levi and Mandy Moore reprised their roles as Flynn and Rapunzel for all the films and series.