Production[ edit ] Stephen Root used his background in Southern theater to help him develop the voice of Bill. Root attended the University of Florida , and had performed in Southern plays in New York City prior to being chosen for the role. He originally auditioned for the role of Dale Gribble , which "didn't feel right" so he then auditioned for Bill. He speaks fluent Cajun French and plays the accordion skillfully, which surprises him just as much as it does everyone else. His father was abusive , spanking him regularly, locking him in a rabbit hutch and making him wear dresses Bill attempts to justify these actions when he mentions them , As of the season 2 episode "The Final Shinsult," Bill's father is presumably still alive though slowing down in his later years , based upon Bill's remark to Hank that his father "can't even load a hunting rifle anymore," with Bill further commenting that he has to "practically put it in his hands and pull the trigger. By season 11, the two are guardians of the family's secret barbecue sauce recipe, which Gilbert refuses to allow Bill to sell.