Walter Koenig is best known for his roles as ‘Pavel Chekov’ in the original Star Trek series, and as
‘Alfred Bester’ in Babylon 5.
The American actor, born in Chicago, Illinois spent the majority of his childhood in Manhattan, New
York. In college he majored in pre-med, receiving a BA in psychology. It was during this time that he
was encouraged to try his hand at acting; joining the theatre with fellow classmate, Supa-Star
Christopher Lloyd, and beginning a career in stage and screen that would span more than 50 years.
In the 1960s Walter appeared in several television shows, including General Hospital and The Alfred
Hitchcock Hour. In 1967 he auditioned for the role of ‘Ensign Pavel Chekov’, navigator on the USS
Enterprise, in the original Star Trek television series. His resemblance to musician Davy Jones (of
Monkees fame) guaranteed him the role, producers hoping his good looks would appeal to younger
audience and attract more viewers.
In the ’90s Walter landed a recurring role as ‘Alfred Bester’ in the television series, Babylon 5. After
filming the third season, the production company applied for an Emmy nomination on his behalf. He
reprised the role in the spin-off series, Crusade.
Koenig’s film credits include all of the Star Trek movies featuring the original cast, while his television
movie credits include Antony and Cleopatra (as ‘Pompey’), Goodbye, Raggedy Ann, and The
His stage credits include A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Twelve Angry Men, and The Boys in Autumn,
a comedy-drama about the reunion of Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn forty years later.
Walter has taught classes in acting and directing privately at UCLA, The Sherwood Oaks
Experimental Film College and at the California School of Professional Psychology. Most recently,
he has been an instructor at the Actor’s Alley Repertory Company in Los Angeles, California.
Walter released his autobiography, Warped Factors – A Neurotic’s Guide to the Universe in 1998.
"Appearance Courtesy of Galactic Productions"
Tress MacNeille, is an American voice actress best known for providing various voices on the animated series The Simpsons, Futurama, Tiny Toon Adventures, Animaniacs, Disney's House of Mouse, Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers, and Dave the Barbarian. MacNeille was born in Chicago, Illinois. She loved cartoons as a child and wanted to be a voice actress from the age of eight, but instead chose a "practical" career, feeling she would never be able to realize her ambition. She graduated from the University of California, Berkeley and attended broadcasting school, becoming a disc jockey.
MacNeille worked in a variety of jobs and had numerous minor voiceover roles before becoming a regular on an animated TV show. In her words, "I had been doing radio spots, some TV, demos, sound-alikes, industrial narrations -- anything that came my way for about two years." She was also a member of the improvisational comedy group The Groundlings for ten years. MacNeille took acting workshops and worked as a casting assistant for voice acting talent agent Bob Lloyd in what she calls "The University of Voice-over." Lloyd and fellow agent Rita Vennari got MacNeille her first role on an animated show: a part in a 1979 episode of Scooby-Doo and Scrappy-Doo.
She sang and appeared in the music video (as Lucille Ball) for "Weird Al" Yankovic's song "Ricky" (1983), which was based on the I Love Lucy television show and parodied the song "Mickey" by Toni Basil. MacNeille also appeared on Yankovic's 1999 album Running with Scissors, on the track "Pretty Fly for a Rabbi."
MacNeille was cast as Babs Bunny in Tiny Toon Adventures (1990–1995). Writer Paul Dini said that MacNeille was good for the role because she could do both Babs's voice and the voices of her impressions. MacNeille commented: "The best part of doing Babs is that she's a mimic, like me...In the show I do Babs doing Billie Burke, Hepburn, Bette Davis, Madonna and Cher. I even have her doing Jessica Rabbit." The success of Tiny Toon Adventures led to the series Animaniacs. MacNeille was brought in to voice Dot Warner, one of the show's three main characters, because Dot's character was very similar to Babs Bunny. Andrea Romano, the voice director and caster for Animaniacs, said that the casters had "no trouble" choosing the role of Dot: "Tress MacNeille was just hilarious (...) And yet [she had] that edge." MacNeille was nominated for an Annie Award for her performance on the show in 1995.
She has provided voices for numerous films, television shows, video games and commercials, garnering over 200 credits. MacNeille says "the characters that I do all come from people in my own life--as well as the material I've stolen from my friends!" Her TV roles include characters on The Simpsons, where she voices Agnes Skinner, Brandine Spuckler and Lindsey Naegle, and Futurama, in which her main role is the character Mom. MacNeille has provided voices on many other television shows and cartoons such as Rugrats (as Charlotte Pickles), Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers (as Chip and Gadget), Histeria!, Hey Arnold!, as well as dubbing work on English language anime translations.
She is the current voice of Daisy Duck and Wilma Flintstone. MacNeille also appeared as an angry anchorwoman in Elvira, Mistress of the Dark and served as the voice of Elvira's Great-Aunt Morganna Talbot. She provided voice-acting for the 2003 Wile E. Coyote and The Road Runner short feature The Whizzard of Ow.
Named by the entertainment industry’s Variety magazine as one of the top ten voice actors in the business, the Emmy-nominated Jess Harnell is truly one of the best and busiest. “If I wasn’t getting paid for this, I’d be doing it for free in a parking lot somewhere.” Born on the east coast and moving to California when he was ten, Jess always knew he’d end up as a performer- though not necessarily as a cartoon!
Jess has appeared on practically every animated series on TV from “The Simpsons” to “Fairly Odd Parents” to” Phineas & Ferb.” In addition, he has dozens of starring roles, including “Captain Hero” on Comedy Central’s “Drawn Together”, Chilly and The Wicked King on “Doc McStuffins”, “Cedric” on “Sofia The First” and “Wakko” on Steven Spielberg’s “Animaniacs”, winner of multiple Emmy awards including Best Animated Series and the prestigious Peabody Award.
Jess’s voice has been heard on countless popular prime time television series from “The Practice” to “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” to “Chuck” and announcing shows such as “America’s Funniest Home Videos” and E! TV’s hit series “Celebrities Uncensored,” which Jess essentially hosted. Jess has an extensive background as a rock singer winning numerous Best Singer awards and doing literally thousands of gigs as a studio vocalist and sound-alike, impersonating many famous vocalists flawlessly. In fact, Jess is currently the lead singer in the acclaimed 80’s metal/pop mash-up band “Rock Sugar”, sharing stages with such rock legends as AC/DC, Slash and Aerosmith.
Just a few of Jess’s film credits include “Finding Nemo,” “The Country Bears,” the “Toy Story” franchise, and “Up” as well as being the only voice actor to voice two major characters in the “Transformers” films. Additionally, Jess has voiced thousands of promos and has many national commercial credits for clients such as Disney, McDonalds, Diet Coke, Fox, Kellogg’s and a series of spots for Sea World as the voices of both Shamu and Shamu Jr. Jess is the first to admit that he has an unusual and very interesting career, “I knew that I had a weird occupation when my mom asked me what I did one particular day at work and I told her I’d been playing a ‘devil dog from hell.’ She replied, ‘Well, that’s nice. How’s everything else going?’”
One of the top celebrity voice matches in the business, Jess perfectly mimics over 150 celebrities- both speaking and singing- from Arnold Schwarzenegger to Ozzy Osbourne, Elvis Presley to all four Beatles, Albert Brooks To Christopher Walken, Steve Perry to Willie Nelson and Pee Wee Herman to Rodney Dangerfield. “If it’s related at all to the voice, I’d like to believe I can do it. And if I can’t, I’ll work on it until I figure out a way that I can.”
The goal of bringing absolute believability to a fictional character, live-action or animated, is what every actor strives for. Those committed to their craft that combine experience, passion and skill are likely to succeed. Those gifted with exceptional talent who focus on maximizing their potential by finding their own niche, quickly break apart from the pack. After years of honing their craft and consistently delivering memorable performances in which the character impacts an indelible image on the viewer, the public and the industry take notice, singling out the best.
“I’m getting paid to do what got me in trouble in the 7th grade,” jests Rob Paulsen, who is one of the most popular voices in animation and won a Daytime Emmy in 1999 as “Outstanding Performer in an Animated Program” for Pinky and the Brain (WB). Though nominated twice previously, the victory was especially sweet due to the most formidable competition ever – fellow nominees Louis Anderson, Ernest Borgnine, Dom DeLuise, and Jeffrey Tambor. In addition to his Emmy, Rob won back-to-back Annie Awards in 1997 and 1998. “I absolutely love what I do and thank my lucky stars for twenty five years of full time employment in this business,” he admits. Interestingly, in those twenty five years, Rob now has the unique opportunity to have gone full circle with the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles animated series; having voiced Raphael in the original show, he is now voicing Donatello in Nickelodeon’s much anticipated TMNT.
Originally from Detroit, Michigan, Rob “loved cartoons like most kids ” and aspired to be a professional hockey player. “Fortunately, I learned pretty quickly that I had neither the talent, temperament nor dental insurance to pursue a career as a pro hockey player”. Ironically, acting was something to “fall back on” and Rob has voiced beloved characters in several iconic animated series: Yakko Warner in Animaniacs and Carl Wheezer in Jimmy Neutron, Boy Genius, but may be best known to animation fans the world over as the voice of the boisterous and energetic laboratory mouse Pinky in two hit series Steven Spielberg Presents Pinky and The Brain and Pinky, Elmyra, and The Brain for Warner Brothers.
“It’s a treat to portray a complex character,” Rob explains about Pinky, a gangling mouse with funny teeth, a head filled with clouds and an inane imagination that is punctuated with a staccato laugh. “Besides... where else could I find a job where emotional outbursts and odd exclamations like ‘Egad!’, ‘Narf!’, ‘Poit!’, ‘Splonk!’, and ‘Zort!’ are allowed?”