The Animated Voice: Interviews with Voice Actors, provides insights from animation directors, voice directors, writers and actors on the craft and business. Now you’ll know what it’s really like behind-the-microphone. How do actors “break in” to show business? Is there more than one way? What do actors need to do to achieve success, and stay successful? Learn the answers in The Animated Voice.
Note the calibre of talent featured in each volume:
The Animated Voice, Volume Five. Release date TBA.
Volume Five offers global coverage from actors and directors discussing how people acquire roles.
They include DEAN DeBLOIS, director of the How to Train Your Dragon trilogy, MIKE FALLOWS, who directed Jane and the Dragon, MAKOTO SHINKAI (Your Name; Weathering with You), AYUMU WATANABE and KENICHIRO AKIMOTO (Children of the Sea), and Ji Zhao of China (The White Snake).
We hear from actors Steve Blum, Joshua Seth, James Arnold Taylor, Jim Cummings, Margaret Kerry, Greg Baldwin, Phil LaMarr, Bob Bergen and Eric Bauza.
Our topic this time: Celebrity Voice Actors–Boon or Bane? is tackled by producers Darla K. Anderson, Nicholas Briggs, Steve Oedekerk, Bruce Timm; directors Brad Bird, David Bowers, Sam Fell, Pete Docter, Mike Gabriel, Mamoru Hosada, Isamu Imikake, Tim Johnson, Rob Letterman, Tom McGrath, Eric Darnell, Eric Radomski, John Stevenson, Mark Osborne, and Doug Sweetland; writer/voice director Mark Evanier; voice director Andrea Romano; and actors Lucille Bliss, Kevin Conroy, Jason Douglas, Mark Hamill, Katie Leigh, Vic Mignogna, Bobby Moynihan, Patton Oswalt, Rob Paulsen, Will Ryan, Seán Schemmel and Frank Welker.
Animation scholar, impressionist and actor Keith Scott provides the Foreword.
The Animated Voice, Volume Four. ISBN 978-1-68390-308-6. Release date TBA.
This volume explores the concept of live-action actors contributing to voiceover from their perspective, and from the perspective of the voiceover specialist, and from actors who perform behind the microphone and in front of the camera. These include JONATHAN FRAKES, MARK HAMILL, ALAN OPPENHEIMER and ARNOLD STANG.
Disney directors Chris Williams and Byron Howard talk about their selections for Disney’s Bolt, and story artist MARK WALTON on how he won the role of Rhino the hamster.
The Dragon Prince is spotlighted from the show creators AARON EHASZ and JUSTIN RICHMOND as well as the principal cast, Paul Burrows, Jack De Sena, Jason Simpson, Jesse Inocalla, Racquel Belmonte, Sasha Rojen and Adrian Hough.
ALAN REED, JEAN VANDER PYL AND GERRY JOHNSON talk about their work on The Flintstones.
A celebrity cast toplines Monsters vs. Aliens: Reese Witherspoon, Will Arnett, Rainn Wilson, Kiefer Sutherland and Seth Rogen. Joining the discussion are directors Rob Letterman and Conrad Vernon.
The American cast of My Hero Academia discuss their work: Justin Briner, Clifford Chapin, Luci Christian, David Matranga, Dani Chambers, Maxey Whitehead, Kyle Phillips, and Johnny Yong Bosch.
From Star Wars Resistance: Christopher Sean, Donald Faison, Bobby Moynihan and Suzie McGrath.
Canadian talent agent BRENDA CAMPBELL talks about her perspective both as an actress and as an agent.
The topical section discusses how people other than professional actors can acquire roles in an animated production. Opinions from directors Steve Anderson, Brad Bird, Pete Docter, Rob Letterman, Steve Oedekerk, and Conrad Vernon, and guest voices Lou Romano, Peter Sohn, and Doug Sweetland (later, a director).
Foreword by world-class animation scholar and show creator, MARK MAYERSON.
The Animated Voice, Volume Three. ISBN 978-1-68390-307-9. Released: April 1, 2021.
LINDA SIMENSKY, Head of Content, PBS Kids, provides the Foreword for this insightful volume.
NICHOLAS BRIGGS, Executive Producer and Director at Big Finish Productions in the UK, as well as the voice behind the Daleks and Cybermen and many others in modern-day Doctor Who, onscreen and on audio books.
ANDREA ROMANO, legendary voice and casting director whose career spans over three decades and eight Emmy Awards, with credits ranging from The Smurfs to Batman: The Animated Series to Voltron: Legendary Defender.
The definitive voice of Batman and Bruce Wayne, KEVIN CONROY, and the voice of Dick Grayson and Nightwing, LOREN LESTER.
TRANSFORMERS and G.I. JOE voiceover veterans Michael Bell, Paul Eiding, Dan Gilvezan, Alan Oppenheimer, and Gregg Berger and of course, Peter Cullen and, in an extensive interview, Frank Welker.
A topical section discusses the value of actors, and whether it’s better for the cast to record individually or as an ensemble. Observations are provided by producers Nicholas Briggs, Phil Lollar (Adventures in Odyssey), and the late Dwayne McDuffie (Justice League Unlimited); directors Steve Anderson (Meet the Robinsons), David Bowers (Flushed Away), Ash Brannon and Chris Buck (Surf’s Up), Jill Culton (Open Season), Eric Darnell (Madagascar), Mark Dindal (Chicken Little), Pete Docter (Up, Inside Out, Soul), Sam Fell (Flushed Away), Mamoru Hosoda (Mirai), Tim Johnson (Over the Hedge), Rob Letterman (Monsters vs. Aliens), Mark Osborne and John Stevenson (Kung Fu Panda), Conrad Vernon (Shrek 2, Monsters vs. Aliens); voice directors Mark Evanier and Andrea Romano; and actors Kevin Conroy (Batman), Donald Faison (Hype Fazon, Star Wars Resistance), Mark Hamill (The Joker in Batman: The Animated Series; skekTek the Scientist in The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance), Mari Iijima (Lynn Minmay, Super Dimension Fortress Macross), Katie Leigh (Connie, Adventures in Odyssey), Suzie McGrath (Tam from Star Wars Resistance), Bobby Moynihan (Saturday Night Live; Louie, DuckTales, and Orka, Star Wars Resistance), Patton Oswalt (Remy from Ratatouille), Monica Rial (Bulma from Dragon Ball Super), Lou Romano (Linguini, Ratatouille), Will Ryan (Eugene, Adventures in Odyssey), Seán Schemmel (adult Goku from Dragon Ball Super), Keith Scott (Bullwinkle J. Moose), Christopher Sean (Kazuda Xiono, Star Wars Resistance), Peter Sohn (Emile, Ratatouille), Arnold Stang (Top Cat), Kiefer Sutherland (General Warren R. Monger, Monsters vs. Aliens), and Frank Welker (Transformers’ Megatron and many other voices).
Volume Two of The Animated Voice is now available through Amazon.com worldwide. ISBN-13: 978-1683902300, 264 pp.
In this volume:
MEL BLANC discusses his start in animation, his earliest cartoons, the one time he worked for Walt Disney, and other milestones in the career of “The Man of a Thousand Voices.”
JUNE FORAY discusses her many voices, from Witch Hazel and Rocket J. Squirrel, to Spider-Man’s Aunt May, Cindy Lou Who, and Talky Tina, the eerie doll from The Twilight Zone, as well as how she became “The First Lady of Animation.”
A DRAGON BALL Z “symposium” featuring many of the leading voice actors from that series, including Vic Mignogna, Seán Schemmel, Christopher R. Sabat, Sonny Strait, Monica Rial, and others.
Plus: Carlos Saldanha, Mamoru Hosoda, Lucille Bliss, Jeff Bergman, and Mari Iijima, with rare photos and commentary, and an extensive foreword by Kathleen Helppie-Shipley!
The first volume of The Animated Voice, is still available through Amazon.com worldwide. ISBN-13: 978-1683901617242, 242 pp.
In this volume:
PETE DOCTER, discusses his start in animation, how he auditions and hires voice actors, and his storied career, from voice actor, director, and producer, to chief creative officer of Pixar Animation.
MARK EVANIER, whose writing credits include Scooby-Doo, Groo the Wanderer, and most notably, Garfield, chats about his experience as a voice director, and shares his many tricks of the trade.
WILL RYAN saddles up to survey his lifetime in the business, starting with Mickey’s Christmas Carol for Disney and continuing with Adventures in Odyssey, Courage the Cowardly Dog, and many others.
Plus: Marty Grabstein, Katie Leigh, Phil Lollar, Dallas McKennon, and Keith Scott, with rare photos and commentary, and an extensive foreword by Starlog editor David McDonnell!”
To conserve print space, we have made their filmographies available at my website, here.
At long last, after 41 years of meticulous research, Volume One of The Star Wars Historical Sourcebook is now available to the public, published by Pulp Hero Press (an imprint of Theme Park Press) through Amazon.com worldwide. Volume One covers the years 1971 to 1976. ISBN 978-1-6839-0148-8, 396 pp.
Bob McLain, the publisher, wrote, “Part narrative, part oral history, part exhaustive reference, the Star Wars Historical Sourcebook draws upon dozens of interviews with Star Wars cast, crew, and the cadre of supporters who promoted the films, wrote the novelizations, and worked behind-the-scenes with George Lucas to bring a galaxy far, far away to a theatre near you.
“Miller includes hundreds of excerpts from books, newspaper articles, and magazines, with annotated references, copious notes, and introductory articles for each year.
“For those who want to know everything about how Star Wars was conceived, filmed, and promoted …”
Exclusive commentary comes from
Gary Kurtz, producer of Star Wars and The Empire Strikes Back
Harrison Ellenshaw, matte painter
Jerry Beck, film historian
Bjo Trimble, “First Lady” of Star Trek
Maggie Thompson, co-editor, Comics Buyer’s Guide
Craig Miller, Director of Fan Relations, Lucasfilm
Steve Sansweet, Director of Fan Relations, Lucasfilm
Kurtz also wrote the foreword. He says, “This historical sourcebook is an extraordinarily complete work, annotating almost everything that has been written about the original Star Wars Trilogy (now called Episodes 4, 5, and 6). I have personally found this sourcebook very useful for my own research into questions I am asked in interviews. Bob Miller has done a monumental job on this sourcebook and any true Star Wars fan or scholar must have this work in their collection.”
USA ($29.95): https://tinyurl.com/y7mtsb3f
UK (£22.60): https://tinyurl.com/ycs6w37r
Canada: ($39.44): https://tinyurl.com/y7ptgwdp
Germany (€27,36): https://tinyurl.com/ybwkrzhm
France (€26,98): https://tinyurl.com/ydxcuyvs
Spain (€26,59): https://tinyurl.com/y7du9b67
Italy (€26,59): https://tinyurl.com/y9s3w362
The Star Wars Historical Sourcebook has a Facebook page, which will have updates and allow for feedback from fans and fellow researchers. Please visit!
How much do you know about the original Star Wars? On January 6, 2018, Pulp Hero Press published May the Facts Be with You: 1200 Star Wars Stumpers for Serious Fans. It’s an anti-quiz quiz book covering Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back, and Return of the Jedi, plus the documentaries, the two Ewoks movies, and cartoons Ewoks and Droids: The Adventures of R2-D2 and C-3PO. It’s available from Amazon here.
Photo of W.R. Miller and Jerry Beck, at The Animation Guild holiday party, Gene Autrey Museum, January 7, 2011. Photo by Enrique May.
Since I have written numerous animation articles over the years, animation historian Jerry Beck asked me to contribute to two of his books, The Animated Movie Guide and The Hanna-Barbera Treasury. I was honored to do so.
I’m currently working on future volumes The Star Wars Historical Sourcebook and several other book projects, details of which will be posted here when ready. Stay ‘tuned!