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Images: Looneytunes (Wikipedia). The Simpsons, 20th Television Animation (Wikipedia). Spongebob Squarepants, Nickelodeon (Wikipedia)

Famous Voices in Animated Movies

Voice acting is a unique and fascinating career that brings animated characters to life through sound. While you may not always see their faces, the voices of these talented actors are instantly recognizable and have left a lasting impact on audiences around the world.

Animation students should know who are the voices behind their favorite characters.

Who Are They?

Voice actors are the hidden gems of the animation industry. They provide the voices for animated characters, giving them personality, emotion, and life. Some of the most famous voice actors have become legends in their own right, recognized for their contributions to beloved animated films and TV shows.

Mel Blanc

my image Image: Gene Hester (Wikipedia)

  1. Mel Blanc
    • Known as "The Man of a Thousand Voices," Mel Blanc is perhaps the most famous voice actor of all time. He voiced iconic characters such as Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig, and many more in the Looney Tunes series.

Tom Kenny

my image Image: Philip Romano (Wikipedia)

  1. Tom Kenny
    • Tom Kenny is best known for his role as the voice of SpongeBob SquarePants. His distinctive voice has made SpongeBob one of the most recognizable and beloved characters in animation.

Nancy Cartwright

my image Image: North Valley Regional Chamber of Commerce (Wikipedia)

  1. Nancy Cartwright
    • Nancy Cartwright is the voice behind Bart Simpson, one of the most famous characters from "The Simpsons." Her work has earned her numerous awards and a permanent place in pop culture history.

You May Not See Them, But Their Voice Is Iconic

Voice actors often work behind the scenes, but their voices are instantly recognizable. These actors bring characters to life in a way that makes them unforgettable.

  • James Earl Jones: The deep, resonant voice of James Earl Jones brought Darth Vader to life in "Star Wars" and Mufasa in "The Lion King." His voice is both powerful and commanding.
  • Ellen DeGeneres: Ellen DeGeneres voiced Dory, the forgetful fish in "Finding Nemo" and "Finding Dory." Her warm, quirky voice made Dory an instant fan favorite.

How Actors Started Their Voice Acting Careers

Many voice actors began their careers in traditional acting before transitioning to voice work. Here's how some of the most famous voice actors got their start:

  1. Mel Blanc
    • Blanc began his career in radio, where he developed his talent for creating unique voices. His big break came when he joined Warner Bros. and started voicing characters for the Looney Tunes series.
  2. Tom Kenny
    • Kenny started as a stand-up comedian and actor. His work on various animated series eventually led him to the role of SpongeBob SquarePants, which catapulted his career.
  3. Nancy Cartwright
    • Cartwright studied acting and voice acting, eventually landing the role of Bart Simpson. Her ability to create a distinct voice for Bart set her apart and established her as a leading voice actor.

What Animated Characters Did They Voice?

Voice actors have given life to some of the most beloved characters in animation history. Here are a few examples:

  1. Mel Blanc
    • Voiced characters such as Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig, Tweety Bird, and Sylvester the Cat.
  2. Tom Kenny
    • Voiced SpongeBob SquarePants, the Ice King in "Adventure Time," and the Narrator and Mayor in "The Powerpuff Girls."
  3. Nancy Cartwright
    • Voiced Bart Simpson, Ralph Wiggum, and Nelson Muntz in "The Simpsons."

What Other Movies They Voiced Before and After?

Voice actors often work on multiple projects throughout their careers, voicing a wide range of characters.

  1. Mel Blanc
    • Before voicing Looney Tunes characters, Blanc worked on various radio shows. Afterward, he continued to voice characters in animated TV shows and commercials until his death.
  2. Tom Kenny
    • Before SpongeBob, Kenny voiced characters in "Rocko's Modern Life" and "The Powerpuff Girls." After SpongeBob, he continued to work on "Adventure Time," "Rick and Morty," and many other projects.
  3. Nancy Cartwright
    • Before "The Simpsons," Cartwright worked on "My Little Pony" and "Rugrats." Afterward, she continued to voice Bart Simpson and other characters in various shows and movies.

What Other Famous Actors Would You Like to Voice Over Your Favorite Animated Characters?

Voice acting isn't limited to traditional voice actors. Many famous actors have lent their voices to animated characters, bringing a new level of depth and recognition to the roles.

  1. Tom Hanks
    • Tom Hanks' portrayal of Woody in the "Toy Story" series is beloved by fans of all ages. His warm and engaging voice brought the character to life in a memorable way.
  2. Scarlett Johansson
    • Scarlett Johansson voiced Kaa in "The Jungle Book" (2016) and Ash in "Sing." Her distinctive voice added a unique flair to these characters.
  3. Morgan Freeman
    • Known for his deep and soothing voice, Morgan Freeman would be a fantastic choice to voice a wise, mentor-like character in an animated film.
  4. Emma Stone
    • Emma Stone's versatility and charm make her an excellent candidate for voicing animated characters. Her expressive voice could bring a wide range of characters to life.

Frequently Asked Questions

How did Mel Blanc become a voice actor?
Mel Blanc started his career in radio, where he developed his talent for creating unique voices. He eventually joined Warner Bros. and became the voice of many beloved Looney Tunes characters.

What other characters has Tom Kenny voiced?
Tom Kenny is best known for voicing SpongeBob SquarePants, but he has also voiced the Ice King in "Adventure Time" and the Narrator and Mayor in "The Powerpuff Girls."

Can famous actors also be voice actors?
Yes, many famous actors have lent their voices to animated characters, adding depth and recognition to the roles.

Key Takeaways

  • Voice actors bring animated characters to life with their unique and recognizable voices.
  • Many famous voice actors started their careers in traditional acting before transitioning to voice work.
  • Voice actors often work on multiple projects throughout their careers, voicing a wide range of characters.
  • Famous actors can also make excellent voice actors, bringing a new level of depth and recognition to animated roles.

Voice acting is an essential and fascinating part of the animation industry. The voices of actors like Mel Blanc, Tom Kenny, and Nancy Cartwright have brought beloved characters to life and left a lasting impact on audiences. As the world of animation continues to grow, the possibilities for new voices and characters are endless.

If you're inspired by the world of voice acting and want to pursue a career in Animation, Visual Effects, or Video Games, consider enrolling in programs at VANAS Online Animation School. Visit VANAS to start your journey in the creative arts today.

  • "Voice acting is not just reading lines; it's creating a character that resonates with the audience." – Mel Blanc
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