When John DiMaggio announced he was returning as Bender to the Futurama reboot after leaving the project due to a low pay rate, it was assumed that Disney had given in and bumped his salary. However, it turns out that Disney did not “shut up and take their money” and give it to DiMaggio. Slash Film reported that during a panel at Phoenix Fan Fusion, DiMaggio revealed he didn’t get the pay bump he desired for returning to the Futurama reboot. “People are like, ‘I’m so glad you got more money!’” DiMaggio told Slash Film. “I didn’t get more money. But what I did get was a lot of respect, and a lot of head nods from people who are like, ‘Yo bro, I see you and thank you.’” Previously, he left the series to protest on behalf of all the voice actors on the show, believing they should be paid a higher rate for reviving the beloved animated series.
The #NewDeal4Animation similarly has called for equal wages between animation and live-action workers, mirroring DiMaggio’s arguments for more money. Animation workers from various companies like Bento Box and Titmouse have voted throughout 2022 to unionize for higher wages and better working conditions. While voice actors are covered under the actors’ union, SAG-AFTRA, and not the Animation Guild, DiMaggio’s statement may give a metal head nod to those advocating for higher wages.