April 13, 2016

"His range was incredible... He made himself famous playing a leprechaun, though he wasn’t in any way Irish."

"On ‘Let’s Pretend,’ he played a troll, a parrot, a giant in ‘Jack and the Beanstalk.’ He was always the oddball voice. Arthur said: ‘I never got the girl, not in 19 seasons. I was never starred, I was never featured. But I always worked.’"

From the NYT obituary for Arthur Anderson, who played Lucky in Lucky Charms ads and Ducky in Drake’s Cakes ads and who also had a role in the movies “Zelig” and “Midnight Cowboy” and parts on the TV shows “Car 54, Where Are You?” and “Law & Order" and appeared on stage — in "Julius Caesar" — with Orson Welles.

8 comments:

Curious George said...

He didn't play a leprechaun. He did the voice for one. To an American audience. You know, the same audience that accepts Sean Connery portraying an Irishman with his Scottish accent. Shit, it would be hard to find a kid that couldn't do that voice. Much less a professional actor.

And he didn't make himself famous for doing it.

john said...

"He attended the Professional Children’s School in Manhattan.."

Now known as ... American universities.

Wilbur said...

And, he ran a hell of a good accounting firm. Or so I am told.

Char Char Binks said...

@George

Doing the voice for a cartoon leprechaun is still PLAYING a leprechaun. Aren't those who speak in theatrical productions, whether for radio, cartoons, movies, TV, or onstage, whether seen by the audience or not, ACTORS, who PLAY roles?

Char Char Binks said...

@George

But I'm sure you're right about the genuineness, or lack thereof, of the accent.

Curious George said...

"Char Char Binks said...
@George

Doing the voice for a cartoon leprechaun is still PLAYING a leprechaun. Aren't those who speak in theatrical productions, whether for radio, cartoons, movies, TV, or onstage, whether seen by the audience or not, ACTORS, who PLAY roles?"

Sorry, he read lines in an Irish accent. If you closed your eyes and didn't see the cartoon, it could have been any Irish person talking about cereal. He had nothing to do with the visual.

jr565 said...

this ties into the cultural appropriation argument - is doing the frosted Lucky Charms voice the equivalent of Peter Sellers or Mickey Rooney playing an oriental/asian? Or ben kingsley doing Indian as Ghandi?
Is it only bad in those other cases because they also did stuff with their skin or squinted their eyes. Or, is this legitimate acting? After all Merly Streep made a career playing people with different accents. perhaps hollywood can't exist without cultural appropriation. Actors certainly can/t

mikee said...

There are six billion stories on the big planet, and this was one of them.