Tuesday, September 2, 2008

THE HAT SQUAD: DON LaFONTAINE

Until the last few years, Don LaFontaine was "That Voice". We as the audience didn't know what he looked like, nor what his name was. To get that kind of image across in print, just growl the following line:

"In a world where....."

Yeah. That guy. You know him from countless movie trailers and TV commercials.

Yesterday, Don LaFontaine passed away at the age of 68.

Here's his obituary from 'Entertainment Tonight':

[Don] LaFontaine, known as the "King of Voiceovers," died Monday afternoon at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. LaFontaine's agent, Vanessa Gilbert, tells ET that he passed away following complications from Pneumothorax, the presence of air or gas in the pleural cavity, the result of a collapsed lung. The official cause of death has not yet been released.

Over the past 25 years, LaFontaine cemented his position as the "King of Voiceovers." Aside from being the preeminent voice in the movie trailer industry, Don also worked as the voice of Entertainment Tonight and The Insider, as well as for CBS, NBC, ABC, Fox and UPN, in addition to TNT, TBS and the Cartoon Network. By conservative estimates, he voiced hundreds of thousands of television and radio spots, including commercials for Chevrolet, Pontiac, Ford, Budweiser, McDonalds, Coke, and many other corporate sponsors.

He recently parodied himself on a series of national television commercials for Geico. At last count, he has worked on nearly 5000 films, including appearances as the in-show announcer for the Screen Actors Guild and Academy Awards. Based on contracts signed, he has the distinction of being perhaps the single busiest actor in the history of SAG.

In a Toobworld where the Voice-overs could be a separate race of beings, Don LaFontaine is going to be missed very much. I'm just glad the people viewing at home were finally able to put a face to that incredible voice......

BCnU.....
Toby O'B

"When you die and go to heaven, the voice you hear is not Don's.
It's God trying to sound like Don."
Ashton Smith

1 comment:

Mercurie said...

Personally, given his voice and the fact that he helped create the modern day trailer, I would say he was the greatest voice announcer for trailers of all time.