Before his untimely death in December of 1997, Chris Farley was working with Dreamworks to voice the lead character in a little animated film called Shrek. Farley had already recorded around 90% of the film’s voice work before his death, and the film underwent a drastic rewrite when Mike Myers came on-board in order to keep Farley’s work untouched. It wasn’t until about two years ago that any of the work Farley had done on the film saw the light of day, when a Vimeo account known as Pro-to-Types brought the above Story Reel to the world. The clip, however, didn’t gain too much attention until just recently when it was featured in the new documentary about Farley’s life, I Am Chris Farley.
It will be strange to look back in a couple of years and ruminate on Farley’s absence being two decades old, but it also offers time to wonder about his personal connections to his work. Chris Farley was a comedian, like many others, that did what he could to transform the pain he had in his life into joy for others. Just from this small piece of Farley’s iteration of Shrek, one can only speculate on how closely connected he was to the character’s story. A large and boisterous creature that everyone seems to have pre-determined notions about instead of actually getting to know him? Surely that was something the superstar comedian could’ve related to all-too-well. Sadly, we will never know what a Farley-led Shrek could have been, but it’s nice to listen to all the same.
Let us know what you think of the story reel in the comments below.