May 16, 2011

Voice Actor - Richard Horvitz

We are in a time when hollywood celebrity actors dominate the majority of the big budget voice-over roles in animated feature films - like Ben Stiller and Brad Pitt... Seriously? Did you hear their awful voice performances in Madagascar and Mega Mind?

Granted not all film actors do a bad job of doing cartoon voices for big budget animated films, people like Jack Black and Bill Hader did amazing jobs in my opinion. But when you have trained voice artists that have taken decades to perfect their craft, you have talents like Mr. Horvitz.

Richard Steven Horvitz is known for his work as the the title character Zim from the show Invader Zim. He was also the voice of the original Alpha 5 in all the Power Rangers series, as Raz in Psychonauts, Billy in The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy, Daggett in The Angry Beavers and as Orthopox in the Destroy All Humans! series. He continues to provide the voice of Zim, albeit in mostly video games as the series was canceled in 2002.

He began voice acting in 1993, starting with voice of Alpha 5 on the live-action series Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers. This is one of Richard's often-forgotten roles that he has performed. From here, he expanded into several other regular voice roles on such animated shows as The Angry Beavers (Daggett), Invader Zim (Zim), Kim Possible, Dave the Barbarian (Ned Frischman), Zatch Bell! (Kanchomé), and more recent shows like The Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy (Billy, Billy's dad), Ben 10 (Grey Matter), Squirrel Boy (Rodney), and Shorty McShorts' Shorts as Dudley.

He also played the main character Razputin in Psychonauts and Orthopox in Destroy All Humans!, Destroy All Humans! 2, and Destroy All Humans! Path of the Furon, in a voice that closely resembles that of Zim (rather, what would happen if Zim adopted an English accent). He has voiced various NPCs in Everquest 2. He also does the voice of the Berserker Darklings in The Darkness. He also had a minor part as a grocer that Sophie buys potatoes from in Howl's Moving Castle. Observe his credit list here.

In a behind-the-scenes style interview on the first Invader Zim DVD collection, when questioned about how hard it was to do Zim's voice (meaning all the screaming he did), he simply stated "Did I find doing the voice of Zim hard on my voice? How do I put this?...yes." He also claims his favorite line from the entire series is "You! Obey the fist!" from Career Day but his favorite exchange was in Rise of the Zitboy, where Zim angrily yells out "Why was there BACON IN THE SOAP?!"

See a sample of his work with this collection of clips from Invader Zim.

Selected Voice Credits:

Angry Beavers, The (1997, Animated Series) Daggett
Ape Escape: On the Loose (2005, Video Game) Child
Ben 10 (2005, Animated Series) Boy Nerdy Kid
  Grey Matter
Ben 10: Secret of the Omnitrix (2007, Animated TV Film) Grey Matter
  Lepidopterran Alien
Betsy's Kindergarten Adventures (2006, Animated Series) Scott
Brütal Legend (2009, Video Game) Jack the Lift-Op
  Kabbage Boy Guitarist
Cartoon Network Universe: FusionFall (2009, Video Game) Billy
Chimp Channel, The (1999, Live Action Series) Timmy Briar
Crash of the Titans (2007, Video Game) Koo-ala
Dave the Barbarian (2004, Animated Series) Ned Frischman
Destroy All Humans! (2005, Video Game) Crazy
Destroy All Humans! 2 (2006, Video Game) Orthopox-13
  The Freak
Duel Masters (2004, Anime Series) Fritz
El Tigre: The Adventures of Manny Rivera (2007, Animated Series) Dr. Chipolte Jr. / Diego
  Dr. Chipolte Sr.
EverQuest II (2004, Video Game) Cog Burn
  Farmer Walcott
  Gerbard the Snitch
  Guard Tanglor
  Gubbo Chaley
  Jubbs Tagglefoot
  Snorgle Filthwallow
Grim & Evil (2001, Animated Series) Billy
  Harold, Billy's Dad
  Soap Opera Guy
Howl's Moving Castle (2004, Anime Film) (additional voices)
Invader ZIM (2001, Animated Series) Zim
Johnny Bravo (1997, Animated Series) Dr. Pencilneck
Kick Buttowski: Suburban Daredevil (2010, Animated Series) Mouth
Kim Possible (2002, Animated Series) Aviarius
King's Quest: Mask of Eternity (Video Game) Ice Orc Foot Soldier
  Swamp Wisp
Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots (2008, Video Game) Enemy Soldiers
Mighty Morphin Power Rangers (1993, Live Action Series) Alpha 5
Monsters vs. Aliens (2009, Computer Animated Film) (ADR group)
Nicktoons: Globs of Doom (2008, Video Game) Invader ZIM
Osmosis Jones (2001, Live Action/Animated Film) (additional voices)
Pom Poko (1994, Anime Film) (additional voices)
Power Rangers: Lightspeed Rescue (2000, Live Action Series) Smogger
Power Rangers: Time Force (2001, Live-Action Series) Mantamobile
Power Rangers: Turbo (1997, Live-Action Series) Alpha 5
Power Rangers: Zeo (1996, Live-Action Series) Alpha 5
Prototype 2 (2012, Video Game) (Voice)
Psychonauts (2005, Video Game) Raz
Ratchet & Clank Future: A Crack in Time (2009, Video Game) Battery Bot
Ratchet & Clank: Tools of Destruction (2007, Video Game) The Zoni
Shaolin Soccer (2000, Live Action Film) (additional voices)
  Team Gangster Leader
Shorty McShorts' Shorts (2006, Animated Series) Dudley
Skylanders: Spyro's Adventure (2011, Video Game) Kaos
Squirrel Boy (2006, Animated Series) Rodney J. Squirrel
Static Shock (2000, Animated Series) Jimmy Osgood
Zatch Bell! (2003, Anime Series) Kanchome
Zatch Bell!: Mamodo Fury (2005, Video Game) Kanchome

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