For the past decade, voice actors have been slowly appearing more in the limelight. And thanks to that, their names and faces aren't so vague anymore. But, still today, and in the past they've been disrespected, and not always taken seriously because of their profession. And what everyone needs to realize is that they're not JUST people who have a knack for funny voices. They're committed, diverse, and talented actors (most of them are singers too) who've deserved their success. And not only that, they're also a tight knit community who look out for one another, and even recommend roles for their peers.
4. Tiffany as Judy Jetson?
Despite Janet Waldo (her original voice actress) having recorded Judy's dialogue for Jetsons: The Movie, studio executives replaced her with pop star Tiffany (with hopes of attracting the younger crowd). According to voice director Andrea Romano, Waldo was heartbroken by the decision, and Romano was so upset that she had her name removed from the credits.
3. Come along, sit with the custodians
When Space Jam was released in 1996, along with any other big Hollywood picture there was a premiere. And all the current celebrities, executives, director, and stars of the film appeared on the red carpet. With the exception of some individuals, but it's not like they were important anyway. Just the voices behind cartoon icons who've surpassed the shifts, and trends of time itself.
In an interview with Toon Zone, Bob Bergen (Porky Pig) divulged that his agent tried vigorously to secure an invitation to the premiere. Yet, the event coordinator told her, "Well, the premiere is only for talent." Which she rebuffed, "Well, what do you think I represent?" Despite tediously trying, there was no luck. Until, Dee Bradley Baker's (Daffy Duck) wife allowed Bergen to go in her place, since Bugs' and Daffy's voice actors were the only ones invited outside their group. After arriving at the theater, and walking down the red carpet they were ushered into the "overflow theater."
In the overflow theater, half the seats were empty while the other seats were filled by secretaries, accountants, and janitors from Warner Bros. Bergen remarked that the other voice actors could have also been invited, and there'd have been enough room. Funnily enough, on Billy (West)'s account, Bob was more peeved off about this, while Bob said Billy was more annoyed about it. But, it's probably fair to say that they were both POD.
2. Casting Celebrities in Their Roles
This sadly has become commonplace nowadays, with number four being one of the more popular stories. This trend prominently started in the nineties. Executives believed celebrity casting in animated features would put more butts in the seats. Since a hand drawn film having no celebrities has never been successful (sarcasm alert). There was also some controversy when Frank Welker wasn't cast as Megatron, since he could/can still do his voice incredibly well. Don't believe me?
And in the recent Smurfs films, almost all of the voices were performed by celebs, DESPITE THE MAJORITY OF THE ORIGINAL CAST STILL BEING ALIVE AND VOCALLY COMPETENT. And I honestly don't think the audience, particularly children, give a darn if Donny Osmond's voicing a turtle as long as the performance is at least DECENT.
1. Used as References
In an interview, Billy West revealed that studios have played voice actors' audition tracks to A-list stars without their authorization. And they're usually not paid for it. Although, West did mention that he's gotten compensation to do an audio scratch for a celebrity in a movie. He further commented,
"Yeah, and sometimes you’ll actually hear stuff that you actually thought of during the audition, because you have to really be on your toes."
Sadly, West doesn't believe there'll be any legal justice.
"No. I gotta prove it. I used to bring a tape recorder around with me, but still, it’s like trying to fight city hall. It is what it is. But that’s my real issue with it is that this is an Area 51 for experienced voice-over people who do create characters and not just do who and what they are. It takes away from the creative process."