Frank Welker Cameo on ‘Futurama’

09.01.2010

The head of cartoon voice acting legend Frank Welker has been immortalized in a cameo appearance on Futurama.

Below is a screen capture from “Lrrreconcilable Ndndifferences” (Season 6, episode 11 – production number 6ACV11) in a scene where Fry, Leela and Lrrr visit Orson Welles in the Head Museum. You can see Frank’s head in a jar on the upper shelf:

Frank Welker cameo on 'Futurama' along with (L to R, top shelf) Raquel Welch, Lawrence Welk, Paul Weller, (L to R, bottom shelf) Peter Weller, Orson Welles, Dawn Wells and H.G. Wells. Image courtesy of FOX and is used here for the purpose of commentary. 'Futurama TM and copyright FOX, its related entities and the Curiosity Company. All rights reserved.

Futurama‘s Season 6 finale airs Thursday, September 2nd at 10 pm (EST) on Comedy Central.

ComedyCentral.com also has web exclusive video interviews with Futurama cast members Maurice LaMarche, Phil LaMarr, John DiMaggio, Lauren Tom, David Herman, and two videos featuring Billy West here and here.

There is also a video clip from the San Diego Comic-Con 2010 Futurama panel with a teaser on the season finale which includes guest voices Coolio and Al Gore, and special musical guests Devo (<–click for a preview).

A very special thanks to Futurama fan “Bend-err” for posting this image at my request to the Planet Express Employee Lounge – The Futurama Message Board.

~ Craig “Voiceroy” Crumpton
Publisher: Voice Actors in the News


Cast Details for New Scooby Doo D2V and TV Series

04.02.2010

The March 12th press release (courtesy of Scoobyfan.net) for the upcoming live-action/CGI sequel to Scooby Doo: The Mystery Begins reveals an upcoming animated direct-to-video title: Scooby-Doo: Camp Scare, which releases on DVD in September 2010.

In addition to the principal voice cast fans have come to expect from the animated series and features (Frank Welker as Fred and Scooby Doo, Grey Delisle as Daphne, and Mindy Cohn as Velma), I have a source confirming some of the supporting cast for this new D2V title: Tara Strong, Phil LaMarr and Lauren Tom. Scott Menville was also mentioned, which leads me to believe that Menville will be reprising his role as Shaggy rather than Matthew Lillard who voiced Shaggy for the February 2010 DVD release, Scooby-Doo! Abracadabra-Doo. [Menville also voiced Shaggy for the previous TV series, Shaggy & Scooby-Doo: Get a Clue!]

My source added that they were putting the “finishing touches” on recording.

The press release also mentions that the new animated TV series, Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated will air in 2011. However, since I first published this article here I now have two sources confirming that the series will air summer 2010, possibly in July, and that the 2011 date mentioned in the press release is believed to be for international markets.

A preview of the new series is scheduled to air Monday, April 5th at 7:00 PM (EST) on Cartoon Network, and it’s been given a full 30-minute time-slot on the CartoonNetwork.com Schedule.

The voice cast for Mystery Inc. includes Welker, DeLisle, Cohn and Lillard (whom I’ve confirmed through a fellow cast member that Lillard will voice Shaggy for the new series).

Additionally, David Kaye (voice of Megatron in five Transformers series to date) shared news that he had a recording session April 1st for an episode of Mystery Inc. with the aforementioned Welker and DeLisle, as well as fellow guest stars Cree Summer and Maurice LaMarche. Kaye added that he got to deliver one of the most famous lines of the Scoobyverse.

And as an exclusive for the blog, Kaye graciously granted permission to share the photos from the recording session:

Maurice LaMarche and Frank Welker


Cree Summer and Frank Welker


Group photo for a recording session of an episode of 'Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated': Left-to-right: Frank Welker, Maurice LaMarche, Collette Sunderman (voice director), David Kaye, Mitch Watson (writer).

And on a related Scooby note, I neglected to mention the February 16th release of Scooby Doo: Abracadabra-Doo in my VAs on DVD coverage earlier this year, but it’s worth the rental. It’s been well-received by fans (click here comments via Scoobyfan.net) and it also received positive reviews (toonzone called it “an uncommonly good Scooby-Doo movie”) due to its return-to-roots retro look and feel as well as some of best 2D animation Warner Bros Animation has produced for a Scooby feature since Scooby Doo on Zombie Island (1998).

Overall, it’s also one of the most entertaining Scooby features released in the last decade (or more). It just seems like more attention was given to producing a quality product which appealed both to kids and nostalgic Scooby Doo fans. For starters, it’s directed by Spike Brandt (Duck Dodgers, Animaniacs), and both Alan Burnett and Paul Dini — two of animation’s top writers — were involved in developing/writing the story and teleplay.

And it boasts a great cast too. Of course you’ll hear Welker, DeLisle, Cohn and Lillard (as Shaggy), and guest stars include Danica McKellar (The Wonder Years), Brian Posehn (Mission Hill, Transformers Animated), Jeffrey Tambor (The Larry Sanders Show), and comedian Dave Attell as the voice of the Mystery Machine’s wisecracking GPS. Also listen for cartoon voice acting regulars John DiMaggio, Dee Bradley Baker, Crystal Scales, Olivia Hack, Diane Delano, James Patrick Stuart, and John Stephenson whom I believe has voiced a character in nearly every Scooby Doo production since 1969.

Wikipedia also mentions a Scooby-Doo and the Wild West Frankenstein animated D2V feature for 2011, but I have been unable to find any sources confirming this title. And according to a post on ScoobyAddicts.com, there was a Wikipedia entry in October 2009 which listed this title as Scooby Doo and the Wild West Boogeyman. The listing was removed less than a week later.

A very special thanks to David Kaye — DavidKaye.com for the photos.


Featured Voices: Charlie Williams

01.16.2010

Charlie Williams: The Noise Guy (Image courtesy NoiseGuy.com)

The Wyoming Tribune Eagle has an interview with Charlie Williams, aka “The Noise Guy” (or “Onomatopoet”), who has an incredible gift for vocal sound effects.

Williams is also an author, DJ, cartoonist, educator, kids comedian and performer, and has released 8 recordings showcasing his vocal SFX and stories for children. And he performs a routine he calls “Star Wars in three minutes.”

His most recent recording, “Sugar Frosted Noisy Tales,” features “naturally sweetened kids stories” and is described as being full of “crazy kid comedy, parody, imagination [and] silliness.”

Williams’ site — noiseguy.com — is a Flash-animated cartoony playground featuring his repertoire as a “vocal sound impressionist.”

He also has a YouTube Channel with video of his performances and TV interviews such as this one:



Update: 1.18.2010
YumaSun.com has a recent interview with Charlie as well, which I found through Charlie’s Noise Guy/Sound Safari fan page on Facebook.

On a related note, I’ve been developing a feature article on vocal sound effects, featuring some of the top vocal noisemakers in the industry: Fred Newman, Frank Welker, Dee Bradley Baker, Michael Winslow, Marsha Crenshaw, beatbox (aka “vocal percussion”) master Rahzel and the late-great Victor Borge. (Charlie Williams will, of course, be included, and I hope to have interviews with a few of these individuals as well to accompany the article.)

But I’ve hit a snag in the article. There’s one performer that stands out in my memory whom I believe was one of the original “pioneers” of vocal SFX. But for the life of me, I can’t remember his name.*

[* Now identified as Wes Harrison. See 1.17.2010 update below.]

When I was a kid (back in the late 70s), my grandparents had in their vinyl record collection a recording (possibly from the 50s or 60s) which featured live and studio-recorded performances by a Grand Master of vocal sound effects. The live portions resembled a sort of stand-up comedy performance, and he performed using a bullhorn (which I recall he said he kept in his car to pull pranks on other drivers and pedestrians).

He also performed live the most complex vocal sound effect I’ve ever heard: a train going from start to stop, and even moving between cars in the middle.

It was simply one of the most astounding things I’ve ever heard and I’ve spent a lifetime trying to replicate the performance.

If anyone could help me track down this performer’s name, I would be incredibly grateful. And once I find out the guy’s name, I can try tracking down a copy of the LP which I’ve been wanting to own…well, for nearly my entire life.

Also, if you notice any names I didn’t mention in my list above that you feel should be included in my article, please post them via the comment box below.

Update: 1.17.2010 — A very special thanks to voice talent Lee Gordon (LeeGordonProductions.com) for helping to I.D. the voice of Wes Harrison (via the VO-BB.com message board).

Thanks to Lee, I was thrilled to discover that Wes Harrison is not only still alive (and still performing at the age of 84), but he also has an official website: MrSoundEffects.com.

And here’s a video of Harrison performing live the famous steam train bit (which I described earlier):

Also thanks to voice talent Liz de Nesnera (hireliz.com) for the suggestion to include Victor Borge.


Voice Cast Cavalcade: The Simpsons

01.11.2010

Originally a news brief, this post has since been expanded into a feature article to commemorate 20 years of “The Simpsons” by spotlighting the show’s voice cast and guest stars. Please scroll down for the most recent updates.

© Image courtesy Fox Broadcasting

Originally posted 1.11.2010:

NYDailyNews.com has a pictorial showcasing “The Simpsons 20th Anniversary Special: the faces behind the iconic cartoon” which includes 56 photos of the principal cast and many of the show’s celebrity guest stars over the last two decades and the characters they voiced.

Of note are some of the lesser-recognized members of the supporting cast: Frank Welker, Pamela Hayden, Maggie Roswell, Marcia Wallace, Tress MacNeille and Russi Taylor.

Update: 1.12.2010, 2:30 PM (EST)Time.com has a pictorial on “The Simpsons Greatest Guest Voice Appearances” featuring “a gallery of 20 of the world’s most illustrious personalities as skewered by Matt Groening.”

(Thanks to VoiceChasers for the heads-up via Twitter.)

Elsewhere, Macleans.ca blogger Jaime Weinman illustrates how The Simpsons’ cast has helped simple one-shot, castaway characters become recurring fan favorites.

Update: 7:30 PM (EST) — If you missed seeing “The Simpsons 20th Anniversary Special: In 3-D! On Ice!” when it premiered on FOX Sunday, Jan. 10th, as of Monday, Jan. 11th the entire episode is available on Hulu.com. (Sorry, I am unable to embed Hulu videos via WordPress.)

I believe fans can also expect an extended “director’s cut” to be released on DVD and Blu-Ray in 2010.

[I’ve deleted the original YouTube link to the documentary for legal reasons.]

The documentary (which has a run-time of around 42 minutes) features the following voice talents:

Mike Judge (Beavis & Butthead, King of the Hill, The Goode Family)
Seth MacFarlane (Family Guy, American Dad, The Cleveland Show)
Julie Kavner, voice of Marge Simpson
Yeardley Smith, voice of Maggie
Nancy Cartwright, voice of Bart
Hank Azaria, voice of Moe, Apu, Chief Wiggum
Dan Castellaneta, voice of Homer, Grandpa Simpson, Krusty, Mayor Quimby
Dana Gould (The Simpsons, Clerks: The Cartoon, Gex video game series)
David Cross (Kung Fu Panda, Aqua Teen Hunger Force, Freak Show)
Trey Parker and Matt Stone (South Park)
– …and several of the shows guest stars such as Sting, Jerry Springer, Conan O’Brien and Hugh Hefner.

[Simpsons’ cast member Harry Shearer is noticeably absent from the documentary. Shearer performs the voices of Ned Flanders, Kent Brockman, Principal Skinner, Mr. Burns, Smithers, Rev. Lovejoy, Lenny, Scratchy and many others.]

Additionally, TVSquad blogger Jason Hughes has a thorough review of the special. Here’s an excerpt:

Documentary filmmaker Morgan Spurlock (Super-Size Me, 30 Days) quite literally traveled the globe speaking to fans of all walks of life. He found the largest single collection of Simpsons merchandise and it was a frightening and beautiful thing to see. It spotlighted just how important this show is to some people, and how much these characters have resonated with generations of fans now.

It was also great seeing the interviews with the voice actors, as we so rarely get to see the faces that go with so many of the voices on the show. There are so many great characters on The Simpsons, it’s hard to imagine that so few actors voice all of them. Personally, I would have gotten a huge kick out of seeing them all do their big characters, but maybe that’s just me. The work that goes on behind each episode fascinates me.

Elsewhere, National Post columnist Robert Cushman has an opinionated review of Spurlock’s documentary.

Update: 8:00 PM (EST)OnTheBox.com has a review of The Simpsons: Access All Areas, a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the show. It aired only in the UK on SKY1 on Monday, Jan. 11th.

[Update: 1.13.2010 — According to the UK’s Press and Journal, this was the first of a series of three special featurettes airing on SKY1 during the week.]

Narrated by Ricky Gervais (BBC’s The Office), it featured interviews with the show’s cast and crew, including creator Matt Groening, producer Al Jean, composer Alf Clausen, voice actors Dan Castellaneta and Nancy Cartwright, other of the show’s writers and artists and token celebrities Christina Ricci, Tony Hawk and Simon Cowell (who all voiced cameos in the series).

Update: 8:15 PM (EST) — Video interview with Yeardley Smith on FOX’s Good Day LA.

Hank Azaria posts 1.11.2010 via Twitter:

It was actually 22 years ago that the simpsons began for me, so next year when I turn 46, I’ll have been doing it for half my life. Sheesh.

– The Niles Daily Star has a retrospective on 20 years of The Simpsons, including commentary on the show’s voice cast. It also quotes Harry Shearer (via The Associated Press):

“I wish I could say that we inspired an awful lot of funny, smart, irreverent, acerbic shows that took a lacerating view of the insitutions of society. But I don’t think we have,” SNL alum Harry Shearer, 66, who voices Mr. Burns, Waylon Smithers, Ned Flanders, the Rev. Lovejoy, Kent Brockman, Dr. Hibbert and Principal Skinner, told The Associated Press.

Shearer, who also pummeled the pretensions of rock music as bassist Derek Smalls in 1984’s magnificent mockumentary “This is Spinal Tap,” said satire doesn’t change anything with its scorn.

“For instance,” he said, “after 20 years and 450 episodes, I don’t really think ‘The Simpsons’ has increased the country’s skepticism about nuclear power,” which employs the bumbling Homer as a safety inspector.

Update: 8:45 PM (EST)TheImproper.com has some behind-the-scenes “secrets” on the show’s celebrity guest voices from Hank Azaria and writer/producer Al Jean.

Azaria recalls meeting Rolling Stones’ frontman Mick Jagger at the door just before a Simpsons recording session:

“I said, ‘Hey, Mick, we’re thrilled to have you here.’ And he kind of blew right by me like I was the greeter, and went, all dismissively, ‘Yeah, we’ll get it.’

“It made me a little bit annoyed. I knew it was going to get awkward, because I was about to walk upstairs and record with him,” Azaria said.

Al Jean discusses having to turn down celebrity requests to be on the show, such as David Beckham who didn’t make the cut because the show’s producers “didn’t think he was famous enough.” Jean says they ended up getting “a lot of grief” over it, saying it made some people “really angry.” Jean adds, “We get a lot of requests from celebrities, and it’s always a shame when we have to turn people down.”

The Altoona Mirror has a very insightful interview with The Simpsons’ associate producer Brian Kaufman discussing the recording process and directing sessions with the series’ cast and guest stars.

Kaufman, who’s been part of The Simpsons‘ production staff for 12 years, says that it takes about “nine months to produce a show, between all of the components of production,” and reveals that there are “enough new episodes to air through the spring, but even the staff isn’t sure if or when the series will end.”

“It’s kind of renewed in chunks, because of the the contracts – there are deals with the studio, with the actors,” he said. “There are a lot of contractual obligations, and every time one of them comes up, it’s like, ‘Oh, this is it.’ But then they’ll renew for another season.”

On the recording process, Kaufman says, “It’s great to work with the actors, to be on the stage with them, directing them. On the recording stage, it’s usually myself, a writer and the actors. All the actors are there when we do the original recording, but once all the changes – the re-writes – are done, we call them in separately.”

Kaufman says he limits recording lines to “[no] more than 10 takes.” After that, he explains, “the words lose meaning.”

On working with the cast, Kaufman says:

“You have to trust the actors’ instincts. A lot of times, they gave you the best option on the first take. It’s my job to say, ‘OK, we got it.'”

At this point, the cast is “pretty tame,” Kaufman said, because they’ve been working together for so long. He said Dan Castellaneta, the voice of Homer, is the “funniest” actor to work with, and he’s amazed by the talent of Harry Shearer, who can hold conversations between the many different characters he voices.

Update: 11:30 PM (EST) — Collection of video interviews released to the media by FOX, featuring Dan Castellaneta, Julie Kavner, Hank Azaria, Nancy Cartwright, Yeardley Smith, Marcia Wallace and Pamela Hayden:

– On the show’s beginning:

– On casting:

– On performing the characters and being recognized in public:

– On the guest stars:

– On the show’s relevance to society and how it mirrors real life:

– On the show’s success and how proud the cast is to have been a part of it:

Update: 1.13.2010, 1:00 AM (EST) — Best-selling author Mitch Albom (Tuesdays With Morrie, The Five People You Meet in Heaven) details his experience — via The Detroit Free Press — recording dialog for his cameo in The Simpsons’ episode “Thursdays With Abie.”

Update: 3:15 AM (EST) — Voices.com co-founder Stephanie Ciccarelli blogs via Vox Daily about the 20th anniversary of The Simpsons, explaining the influence the series has had on the voiceover industry and community.

Update: 2:30 PM (EST)iF Magazine reports 1.11.2010 on the future of “The Simpsons”:

[We] approached Fox Entertainment President Kevin Reilly about how long he sees THE SIMPSONS staying on Fox, now that it’s reached its 20-year milestone.

“We have it for two more seasons and then we’ll sit down and see where we are,” says Reilly. “The show is extraordinary. We just celebrated twenty years. I’m certainly not gunning for it. It’s still creatively vibrant. The show is up again this season. It’s just just mind-blowing the breadth of creativity that’s still coming out of that camp.”

And in a closely-related interview (via TVGuide.com) with Simpsons executive producer Al Jean, he says he doesn’t feel the end of the show is “imminent.”

“There have been a lot of great endings but we’ve done them all,” says Jean. “Like the ‘Behind the Laughter’ episode. ‘Eternal Moonshine of the Simpson Mind’ would have been a good one. ‘Lisa’ First Word,’ when Maggie spoke, would have been a good one. One thing I learned in television is don’t save it; if you got something good, air it. I have an idea for the last episode but I don’t want to say it.”

In the same interview, Jean says that his “favorite guest star might be Kelsey Grammer [Sideshow Bob] and it’s a really tough contest because there are so many great ones. His voice gives you so much.”

Jean also reflects on the significance of having the late pop star Michael Jackson involved in the show:

It was one of the many amazing things that happened to me while working on the show. He had said to Jim Brooks, ‘I want to be on the show and I want to write a No. 1 song for Bart.’ And he did and he did, it was No. 1.[Jackson co-wrote — although uncredited — the song “Do the Bartman,” which reached No. 1 in the United Kingdom, Ireland and Australia.] He did come to the table reads and read the script [for the episode “Stark Raving Dad”] but when it came to the singing, he wanted a sound-alike to do the recording and we never really understood why. I did hear him sing and of course he was great. It was one of the coolest things I’ve been involved with.

Elsewhere, IGN.com has an exclusive video with a “special anniversary message” from the King of the Hill cast, featuring the voices of Mike Judge, Stephen Root and Johnny Hardwick.

Update: 3:00 PM (EST)

– Morgan Spurlock talks with Newsarama about the making of “The Simpsons” documentary.

Harry Shearer and Yeardley Smith reflect on 20 years of “The Simpsons” with the Boston Globe.

Nancy Cartwright says in an interview with the UK’s Press and Journal that she has a history of being mistaken for a boy.

“I was about seven when people started making comments about my voice,” Cartwright says. “And being seven and having short hair I had an androgynous quality, so people didn’t know whether I was a boy or a girl. But I just used my voice to make people laugh and, because it made people laugh, it made me happy.”

And after 20 years, when asked what she would like to happen to Bart, Nancy replies, “I’d like Bart to meet Hugh Jackman [X-Men series, The Prestige] – I don’t know if Bart would necessarily want to meet him, but Nancy Cartwright would.”

Update: 1.14.2010, 1:30 PM

TheTakeaway.org has an audio interview with Harry Shearer discussing 20 years of “The Simpsons.”

Also, NewsOK.com has a short piece celebrating Shearer’s 66th birthday on Dec. 23rd.

Media Bistro has a video interview with “The Simpsons” documentary director Morgan Spurlock.

Yahoo News has an interview with Harry Shearer (via The Associated Press).

The Sioux City Journal interviews Yeardley Smith.

Look for more articles to be added to this report in the near future, as several of The Simpsons’ cast have been interviewed recently to coincide with the 20th anniversary of the series.


IGN Interviews Frank Welker

09.16.2009

To coincide with the 9.15 release of Shout! Factory’s Transformers Season 2, Volume 1 DVD box set, IGN.com interviews Frank Welker with a focus on his Transformers work as the voice of Megatron and Soundwave for the original TV series, the 2007 Activision video game, and Transformers: Revenge of The Fallen.

Related post: 7.13.2009 — Transformers G1 DVD Complete Box Set Features Voice Cast Reunion.


Stan Freberg Musical Sells Out

08.29.2009

Oregon’s Willamette Week Online (WWeek.com) reports that Portland’s September 5th live performance of Stan Freberg‘s 1959 musical “Oregon! Oregon!” has sold out, as well as the Sunday, August 30th show in Jacksonville, OR.

Image courtesy Oregon150.org

Image courtesy Oregon150.org

According to WWeek.com, you can tune into a broadcast of Live Wire! Radio‘s 8.22 live recording (which “previewed three numbers from the show”) today (Saturday, 8.29) at 7 PM (PST) on Oregon Public Radio… which is only useful to those living within the broadcast area, unfortunately. OPB.org does appear to offer a streaming live broadcast, but (and this is very frustrating to this Freberg fan) clicking the “on demand” link on the site to listen live yields a “502 Bad Gateway” page (whatever that is).

I am contacting Live Wire Radio to see if perhaps they might be offering this same broadcast in the future by way of their podcast.

Now, for a little history lesson on this lesser-known Freberg gem, courtesy of Shellac.org and the musical’s official page on Oregon150.org:

In 1958 – to celebrate the Oregon’s centennial (100th birthday) – the Blitz-Weinhard Brewing Company commissioned the Grammy Award-winning radio personality Stan Freberg to write a 21-minute-long musical comedy about the beaver state. What resulted was a hilarious tale of two explorers in 1859 named Harry and David, their encounter with a witch, and the subsequent birth of a state which must go back into the bottle after 100 years … that is, if the citizens of 1959 can’t break the spell.

It was premiered on radio during the Oregon Centennial in 1959, and was distributed to radio stations as a twelve inch vinyl LP album. Side One featured two versions of an introduction by Freberg, (billed as “Stan Freberg, Matinee Idol”), with the second version including a few words from William W. Wessinger, the president of Blitz Weinhard Co. This was followed by the show itself, which runs for 21 minutes. Side Two includes separate individual versions of each of the featured songs, including several variations on the title piece, “Oregon! Oregon!”

The plot, (attributed to “M. Goose”) loosely follows the tale of Rumplstitskin, who is personified in this tale as a Witch, who “bottles” states. When the state of Oregon is un-corked, the Witch tells the two explorers, (named “Harry & David” in an obvious commercial nod to the Medford, Oregon mail order gift fruit outfit), that it must go back in the bottle after a hundred years.

When the Centennial rolls around, the witch offers a reprieve if someone can come up with her real name. A California Fruit Inspector happens to over hear her, and saves the day. The Witch, (aka “Miss Columbia River Salmon 1822”), stomps her feet so hard, she falls through the dock at the Centennial party and plunges into Coos Bay.

Click here to listen to the original 1959 recording of the “Oregon! Oregon!” theme, courtesy of Oregon150.org.

Here’s a paraphrased transcription of Stan’s 1959 introduction to the musical:

“I suggested that it might be a nice idea if they threw a big birthday party with ice cream and cake and paper hats and noise makers. Well I might as well have saved my breath because as it turned out, the only noise maker they were interested in was me. They thought the matter through and decided to give Oregon a birthday gift that all Oregonians could enjoy, something much more durable than ice cream and cake. They wanted a musical comedy, complete with a story, songs and music. It started to be quite a short musical comedy, say five minutes in length. But it grew longer and longer and longer until it had three acts and lasted 21 minutes.”

For complete details on the original musical recording and to listen to the album in its entirety, please visit Shellac Radio — shellac.org.

Other suggested reading/listening:

OPB.org: Oregon! Oregon! Musical Updated for 2009
NPR.org: Oregon’s 150 Calls For A New Act
The Most Official Unofficial Stan Freberg Website
The Unofficial Stan Freberg HERE Archives

In a bit of related news, Mark Evanier stated 8.18 on NewsfromME.com that he spent the day “in a recording studio directing the first three shows of the second season of The Garfield Show“:

We had a fine cast today. We have our regulars — Frank Welker (as the cat), Gregg Berger, Wally Wingert and Jason Marsden. We have our semi-regulars — Audrey Wasilewski, Julie Payne, Laura Summer and David L. Lander. And today, we had as guest stars, Stan Freberg, Laraine Newman and Jack Riley.

Whenever anyone asks me the secret of directing cartoon voices, I tell ’em it’s easy. Hire a cast like that, tell ’em which microphones to use and get out of their way. It’s hard work but enormous fun. Having grown up listening to Stan Freberg records (and having purloined much of my sense of humor from the man), I still find it a little unbelievable to be working with him.

And a Freberg-related news item I mentioned here may have gotten buried in my 7.22 VAs on DVD feature article:

Beany and Cecil (Matty’s Sunday Funnies): The Special Edition Volume 2 releases September 8th and includes 11 cartoons and bonus content, including “Time for Beany” (which features Stan Freberg and Daws Butler) and a feature entitled “Bob Clampett and Friends.” It features the voices of Jim MacGeorge, Irv Shoemaker, Lord Buckley, Scatman Crothers, and Paul Frees.

And Mark Evanier offered additional details on the above title in an 8.19 blog post:

A few years ago, a superb DVD came out that mainly covered the animated Beany & Cecil but it was crammed full of special features about Bob’s life, including materials from his vast files. The man saved everything and his son Robert Junior, in assembling the DVD, dipped into those archives and offered up some gems. I can’t think of another animation-related DVD I’ve ever bought that gave you more for your money. Alas…maddeningly…it was not a big success. It did not spawn a whole mess of other volumes and it went out of print and became hard to find.

So now we have two happy announcements. One is that Volume Two has been assembled anyway and it’ll be out next month. The other joyous news is that the Clampett Studio, run by his family, has stumbled across a few boxes of Volume One in the warehouse. So if you didn’t get one, you can get one now when you order this new collection. It has my highest recommendation and I can’t imagine that the new volume won’t, as well.

Go here. Click. Enjoy. You will.

It’s also worth noting that Stan celebrated his 83rd birthday on August 7th. Happy belated birthday, Stan!


Sometimes Other People Blog About Voice Actors Too

08.21.2009

Monkey Goggles blogger Geoff Carter highlights the work of Mel Blanc, Daws Butler, Corey Burton, June Foray, Jim Cummings, Paul Frees, Frank Welker, and others. He promises a follow-up is forthcoming.

Update: 12.20.2009 — Carter fulfills his promise, as promised.

[Thanks to voice actor webmistress extraordinaire Doreen for the heads-up via Facebook.]