How did you get started in voice-acting?
Well, I'm an actor... and when the voice-over industry was first
coming up to Vancouver, I auditioned for Doug Parker here, and I just
had one sort of crazy voice at the time, and he kind of clued in to
that, and he said, "Oh, we have to use that sometimes." And so, from
that one voice, I've just sort of developed more and more voices.
What role did you play?
Well, I played a number of characters in the end, but the first
was this cute little robot... that was the initial sort of break in
the door, and I had tons of voices come after that.
Do you do anything special to prepare yourself for a role? Research,
or little warm-ups?
I can't say as I do, exactly I guess the truth of the matter
is, I mean... I suppose it's different for every different individual.
I mean, I'm an actor and I perform on stage as well as on television,
and I do voice-overs as well, and so basicallyI rely on my education
as an actor to help me out.
When working on something that's been translated from the Japanese
originally, do you want to hear the Japanese, to see how that voice-actor
handled the part?
It's difficult to say. Sometimes the Japanese is helpful...
I find that especially during live-action- that is, if you're dubbing
live-action- but in the cartoons, I find it's easier to have your
own interpretation of the character, because it's mostly off the visuals
that I take things.
So are you saying there's room for improvisation, or...?
I think that often there are cultural differences, sometimes
you can... hmm, what am I trying to say. There's cultural differences
insofar as sometimes I think certain characters are stereotyped as
sort of quieter or more stern characters, and sometimes you want to
sort of break away from that a little bit. For the read in English,
sometimes you want to be a little bit more animate... I don't know.
Do you ever watch the animation you are in?
Oh, yeah, yeah. I've got the videotapes. They're great.
Do you watch Dragon Ball on TV or anything?
Well, the problem is you never know when these sorts of things
are going to be on. I mean, very often I'll do a television show,
and I don't find out when it airs, and people will say "I saw you
on television last night!" And I'll go, "Oh, what was it? I don't
Did you watch animation before you got into voice-acting?
Oh sure, sure... as a kid. Kids all love cartoons, and I guess
I had an affinity for certain cartoons, certainly all the sort of
Mel Blanc cartoons, I really loved those. All those great characters.
When you go out for a voice role, what "type" of character do you
usually go for? Tough guy, young boy, gruff old man?
It's different... I'm starting to get more into the action characters,
the tougher guys, usually they're the more refined characters, sometimes
I play sort of the cuter, cuddly little characters, I don't do too
many of the rough guys... you know, GRAAH... those kind of guys. Mostly
the sort of refined characters, but getting a little more into the
Of all the characters that you've played, who do you consider to
be your favorite, and who do you consider to be the strangest?
Oh boy. Well, it would probably be both, all wrapped up into
one category. There was this character on The New Adventures of He-Man
called "Slush Head"... it was a swamp creature who wore a helmet filled
with swamp water... [BUBBLY UNDERWATER VOICE] "So he'd talk like this.
Oh no! What am I gonna do?" [LAUGHS] That was definitely the strangest
sort of character.
And that's your favorite as well?
Oh, I think so. Everyone always goes "Oh, do that, do that, do
that," and I think it's just so silly.
You mentioned your live-action work earlier. Is there anything
recent, that the readers might have seen lately?
Oh, perhaps- I did an episode of Sliders, I did an episode of
Strange Luck, The Marshal, tons of stuff.
Sounds like you've kept pretty busy.
Fairly busy, yeah... in fairly diverse fields. There the stage
and there's television, and there's voice-over. It keep you busier
if you can diversify.
How do you think voice-acting compares with live-action work?
Voice-acting is a completely different animal. You have to try
and put more into the character with your voice... you're trying to
create action, you're trying to creaet movement with your voice- which
is something we don't do in live-action. When you're on screen it's
all very clear; what you do is, you try to bring life to a character
in a cartoon, whereas whe you're on screen in a live-action role,
it's much more internalized- you're very secretive and internal.
You probably have to work more when you're actually on screen.
Yeah... but I also think there's a tendency to hide more when
you're in live-action and to show more when you're in a cartoon.
Hmm... That's interesting. Do you ever get fan mail?
No, I don't get any fan mail. I don't have any fans. Every once
in awhile, I'll have somebody who comes up and says "I think
I know you, I think I saw you on a show," but it's fairly rare. NOT
a big star yet. [LAUGHS]
They'll find you. Well, do you have any words of advice, for would-be
actors, aspiring voice-actors?
The only thing I can say is that if you want to be an actor of
any kind, it's a good idea to get some training of some sort. I know
there are natural talents out there who just go out and do it, without
having been formally trained, and you just kinda go, "Wow, that's
just... just great." But you may find that if you want to expand beyond
the boundaries that you're in, you could run into some problems unless
you have some training. If a person finds they're doing well in voice-over,
they might want to get some training.
Fan mail can be sent to:
c/o Northern Exposure Talent Management Group
Suite , 1155 Melville Steet
Vancouver, B.C., Canada V6E 4C4
Originally Published in:
Animerica Vol 5. No. 4
Please Save My Earth
Dragon Ball Z
Man with Snake
Vision of Escaflowne.