Do you remember the original, inimitable Bugs Bunny? More people might remember this witty, funny, humorous character than Mel Blanc, the actor who lent Bugs Bunny his memorable voice. His 62-year long career started in radio, but the most memorable performance has been linked to the Golden Age of American cartoons. Mel worked with Warner Bros for a very long time, giving life to a plethora of Looney Tunes characters.
Among the most popular Looney Tunes legends there are Bugs Bunny, Tweety, Marvin the Martian, Road Runner, Daffy Duck, and Sylvester. Many of us grew up with these funny heroes that entertained us for years. You can find the full list of names on their official website.
Despite his excellent cooperation with Warner Bros, Mel Blanc wanted more than to give his voice to characters that were mainly talking to themselves. This is why, after his exclusivity agreement with Warner Bros ended, Mel went to work with Hannah & Barbera, to give life to even more memorable cartoon heroes.
If we were to make a hall of fame of the best voiceover artist, we would surely place Mel Blanc on top of this list. We’ll always remember him for his unique voice and for his versatility.
Who would have thought that Bart Simpson was using a woman’s voice? Yet that’s the naked truth; Nancy Cartwright was the voice behind this widely popular, rebellious, and extremely charismatic guy. As The Simpsons became one of the most widespread cultural phenomena, its fans were dazzled to find out that their favourite hero had the voice of a lady. That was quite audacious and outside the norms.
Even more interesting is that Nancy wanted to play Lisa when she showed up at the audition. Then, she found Bart more appealing, so she changed her mind about her role in the show. While Lisa has also become one of the most captivating personalities in The Simpsons, the story would have been entirely different if it weren’t for Nancy to imbue Bart with a hint of sensitivity, a lot of humour and a witty speech.
Probably nobody uses the good old “Eat my shorts!” any longer. Nevertheless, Nancy is the reason why so many rebellious teens still paint building walls and fences with “El Barto” for posterity. They feel they are under the protection of the Rule of Cool, so they don’t mind the legal consequences of their actions.
Furthermore, Nancy’s role in this doesn’t end here, as she also voices a few other characters on The Simpsons such as Ralph Wiggum, Nelson Muntz, and Todd Flanders. We wish her a well and long active life in this industry.
James Earl Jones
Whether you’re a Star Wars fan or not, chances are you’ve heard of Darth Vader. George Luca used a bodybuilder, David Prowse, to play this character. However, he wanted James Earl Jones to voice Darth Vader. This was one of the most brilliant decisions ever, as Jones made the Sith Lord a shattering force.
The most intriguing fact is that James Earl Jones didn’t want any credit for his performance, as he considered that voice as being just another special effect on the show. That was truly humble from his side. Fortunately, George Lucas gave Jones proper credit for his work, listing him as Darth Vader’s voice. Starting with The Return of the Jedi, everyone could find out who that impressive, booming bass belonged to.