The Surprising Role Everyone Forgets David McCallum Played In Baby Driver
If you can believe it, CBS’ hit crime drama “NCIS” has been on the air for a staggering 19 seasons, and when a show has been running for that long, it’s to be expected that the cast will change and grow immensely over its runtime.
Indeed, with how many new characters enter the series or its various spinoffs each year, it’s remarkable to look back on the principal cast of the series and see just how much the team from “NCIS” has changed over a span of nearly two decades -– and even more remarkable to look back on the characters that have stuck around through it all.
One such character is chief medical examiner Dr. Donald “Ducky” Mallard, played by David McCallum. The 88-year-old McCallum has played Ducky for longer than any other character in his career, and that longevity has made the medical examiner one of the most iconic characters the series has ever produced. McCallum is an essential part of the “NCIS” world, which makes it rather surprising that his connection to the 2017 blockbuster “Baby Driver” seemed to fly over a lot of viewers’ heads.
A man of many talents
The Edgar Wright-directed film “Baby Driver” is a heist movie that is as much about music as it is about crime. The film follows a getaway driver known simply as Baby (Ansel Elgort), who has an intense passion for music. His tinnitus forces him to listen to music constantly while on the job. As such, the soundtrack takes on almost a role in and of itself in each scene, making it an integral part of the movie as a whole. One of the songs used in the film just happens to have been written and performed by none other than David McCallum.
In the 1960s, McCallum began recording music under Capitol Records, choosing to keep them all instrumental in the classical style of his father, the legendary violinist David McCallum Sr. (via Discogs). His most well-known song is “The Edge,” the intro of which was famously sampled on Dr. Dre’s “The Next Episode,” featuring Snoop Dogg — yes, as crazy as it might sound, Ducky from “NCIS” is responsible for the iconic beat on that song.
McCallum’s original version of “The Edge” appears on the soundtrack for “Baby Driver,” and considering how important music is to the theme and feel of that movie, McCallum still makes a massive impact on the movie despite never appearing on screen.