"The role was written to be Zaftig Anke, but we loved Flula Borg so much we changed the role for him," says producer Max Handelman

By Michelle Tauber and Wade Rouse
Updated December 02, 2020 01:26 AM
Credit: Everett; Richard Cartwright/ Universal Pictures

Zaftig Anke?

That’s right, Pitches: According to Pitch Perfect 2 producer Max Handelman, the original script called for Rebel Wilson‘s character to have a German doppelgänger – before Flula Borg auditioned.

“Originally the role was written to be a Fat Amy doppelgänger, Zaftig Anke,” says Handelman, who shared a number of set secrets with PEOPLE in advance of the sequel, which hits theaters Friday. “But we ultimately loved Flula so much and thought he was capable of doing so much more than a one-note Zaftig Anke joke that we changed the role for him.”

And Handelman says he can’t imagine the hilarious movies without the wacky YouTube comedian.

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“To be around Flula and know Flula is kind of a unique thing,” says Handelman, who is the husband of Elizabeth Banks, one of the movie’s stars. “Flula brings this joyful and manic and crazy energy to the sets and his performance. But he’s also extremely talented. He can beatbox, he can sing, he can dance, he’s very funny, and he’s an extremely smart guy.”

Continues Handelman: “He’s part of that Pitch Perfect fabric. He’s a character you wouldn’t find in any other movie. But when you see Flula pop up in Pitch Perfect 2, you’re like, ‘Yep, that’s a Pitch Perfect 2 person!’ “