As I mentioned in a previous post, we made the decision upfront to stay within the movie’s universe despite all being huge fans of the original Heinlein novel. It just made sense to bring back the sinister hordes of bugs from the original film. We obviously kept the iconic Warrior bug as our main enemy, but we also wanted to have new and fresh approaches to the bugs. Our first challenge was ensuring the bugs fit within the Starships. If you measure the bugs closely in the original film, you realize that they are rather big — probably too big to charge down a ship’s corridor. For this film, we took a liberty and scaled down the Warrior bug (just slightly) for that reason. Roaches come in different sizes in the real world, right? Otherwise, they look identical, are filled with the same green blood, and let out the same shrieks when getting pumped full of Federation lead. We’ve had a lot of fun with the bug “characters.” We needed someone to voice the base bug shrieks and casted a Japanese actor whose real name happened to be Mr. Bug (“Baku” is the Japanese phonetic spelling) Owada. His voice has been digitally transformed and the final outcome has the same feel as the original films but is just a bit more “animated.”
Although, we wanted to also use some other bugs from the movie for continuity, they were just too large. To add some variety to the battle scenes, we were looking for a bug that could attack the troopers from distance. The original bugs from the film were armed with plasma and flame-based “weapons.” Plasma just seemed more badass so we created a new species from scratch and named it “Plasma Grenadier Bug.” The design is inspired by several different insects including the beetle, grub, mantis, and pill-bug.
There are some more fun variations of the bugs but I cannot reveal EVERYTHING here. Don’t worry, we are close to the finish line and will announce the release date soon. Stay sharp, Troopers! The only good bug is a dead bug! Right…?