Shrek - Chris Farley audio (partially found recordings of voice performance for animated film; 1990s)
Shrek is a 2001 animated film directed by Andrew Adamson and Vicky Jenson and produced by Jeffrey Katzenberg, Aron Warner, and John H. Williams. It starred Mike Myers, Eddie Murphey, Cameron Diaz, and John Lithgow, and helped establish DreamWorks Animation's reputation, with Shrek being one of their most successful films.
However, before Mike Myers was cast as Shrek, Chris Farley was brought on to voice the titular character. Reportedly, roughly 80-90% of his dialogue was recorded, and people who worked with him on the film felt it was one of his best performances. However, Farley died of a drug overdose at age 33 on December 18th, 1997, still working on the film just a week before his death. There were talks of having a vocal impersonator brought in to record the remaining lines, but ultimately, fellow Saturday Night Live cast member Mike Myers was hired, and the script was rewritten at Myers's request, removing all traces of Farley's version.
Based on reports of the original draft's story and what footage has been released, the story would have been the same overall, but different in several aspects. For instance, Shrek would have been a very different character, not being content with frightening people like his parents and instead wanting to help people, make friends, and even become a knight. Aside from characters such as Fiona and Lord Farquad still being in the film, little else is known about this version of the film.
Very little audio from Farley's version of Shrek has been made public. However, some footage has been released, namely from DreamWorks Development producer John Garbett, who uploaded a two and a half minute scene from Farley's Shrek via VimeoPro. The scene in the video was an early version of the nighttime conversation between Shrek and Donkey where they discussed Shrek's personal life in greater detail. However, the early draft of the scene delved into Shrek's parental issues, a subplot that is absent in the final cut.
- Jim Hill Media article on the original draft of Shrek. Retrieved 22 Jan '16.