Michael Bell (actor)
||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (June 2008)|
July 30, 1938 |
Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
|Spouse(s)||Victoria Carroll (m. 1984)|
Michael Bell (born July 30, 1938) is an American actor, most active in voice over roles. He has acted in video games and animated series, including The Transformers, G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero, Rugrats and The Smurfs and appeared on-screen in film and television, including the TV programs Dallas and Star Trek. Bell was described as being "one of the most prominent voice actors of the 1980s." Both Bell's wife, Victoria Carroll, and his daughter, Ashley Bell, are actresses.
1970s and 1980s voice work
Bell had an important part in animated entertainment in the 1970s and 1980s. His first voice role was that of Stutz, the leader of The Houndcats. In 1973, he was Mark on the Hanna-Barbera series Speed Buggy. He voiced Redbeard the Pirate's Ghost in The New Scooby-Doo Movies episode "The Ghostly Creep from the Deep" as the second Redbeard themed monster in Scooby-Doo. From 1977 to 1984, Michael Bell played two of his best-known roles, Zan & and Gleek on various Super Friends incarnations. He would also voice The Riddler on Challenge of the Super Friends. He also provided the voice of Lex Luthor as a young man, in the episode History of Doom. However, Stan Jones was the voice of the adult Luthor throughout the series. It's interesting to note that Bell later played Luthor in the 1988 Superman series.
He was also Doctor Ben Cooper in Jana of the Jungle and in 1979, he voiced the title character of The Plastic Man Comedy/Adventure Show and later made a guest appearance as Doctor Octopus in another superhero show, Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends.
Outside of animation, Bell performed on records and commercials, including the Young Man in A&M Records' Story of Halloween Horror album in 1977 and Parkay Margarine and Mug Root Beer. Bell provided the overdubbing of Peter Criss’ dialogue in the band KISS's TV movie KISS Meets the Phantom of the Park. In 1980, he provided the voice of the title character in The B.B. Beegle Show, an unsold TV show pilot that featured puppets.
Throughout the 1980s, Michael Bell starred in four hit animated series;
- as Grouchy Smurf, Lazy Smurf, Handy Smurf and Johan the human in The Smurfs
- as Autobot Prowl, Scrapper, Sideswipe, Bombshell, First Aid, Swoop, Gort, Brainstorm and Doctor Fujiyama in The Transformers and The Transformers: The Movie
- as Duke, Xamot, Blowtorch and numerous others in G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero and G.I. Joe: The Movie
- as Lance in Voltron: Defender of the Universe.
He also starred in the 1982 animated series The Incredible Hulk. The Hulk was voiced by Bob Holt, while his human side, Bruce Banner was played by Michael Bell. In a 2004 interview, he joked about how Bob Holt would be annoyed that he was growling his throat out while Bell got the easier stuff.
Later voice work
Bell continues to work in animation in the 1990s and into the 21st century in movies and television, with roles such as Quackerjack from Disney's Darkwing Duck, Aziz in Aladdin, Ixus Naugus on Sonic the Hedgehog and Ezekiel Rage in The Real Adventures of Jonny Quest. He was also featured as Opus in the Bloom County television special A Wish for Wings That Work.
Video game voice work
He is also a prolific voice in video games, which include Soldier of Fortune II: Double Helix, Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos, Diablo II: Lord of Destruction, Baldur's Gate, Ratchet and Clank and the character Raziel in three games in the Legacy of Kain series, among many others.
Bell appeared in live-action exploitation shorts and PSAs - scare films made in California during the early 1960s, ranging in content from venereal disease (Damaged Goods) to psychedelic drug abuse (Trip To Where).
He made guest appearances in multiple episodes of the Star Trek series. He also appeared in the Star Trek: The Next Generation pilot episode, “Encounter at Farpoint”, as Bandi administrator Groppler Zorn, and in the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episodes “The Homecoming” as a Bajoran and in “The Maquis.”
Bell appeared in multiple episodes of Dallas as Les Crowley during the 1980-81 season, in M*A*S*H in the episode “Souvenirs” as Willie Stratton and also guest starred in two episodes of Three's Company as Rama Mageesh and Michael, a sleazy dance instructor in the sixth season episode "Some Of That Jazz" (1981). Bell played Bill Duncan, Sabrina (Kate Jackson)'s ex-husband on Charlie's Angels, as well as appearing as King Edward Spencer on Jackson's series Scarecrow and Mrs. King. In 1970, he appeared in an episode of The Silent Force.
In 1983, he and his future wife Victoria Carroll opened The West End Playhouse in Van Nuys. The two of them organised, wrote, directed, and acted in dozens of productions.
One of the most notable was The Ladies of the Camillias in which Bell played the villain Ivan and Victoria starred as Madame Sarah Bernhardt. The play won multiple Drama Logue Awards.
He served as the theater's director until 1988, when by mutual agreement to devote more time to their child, Bell and Carroll sold the theater to Edmund Gaynes and Pamela Hall.
On March 30, 2012 the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) and the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA) completed a merger of equals forming a new union SAG-AFTRA. As a result of this merger, a group of actors including Bell, fellow voice actors Wendy Schaal, Clancy Brown, Schaal's former stepmother Valerie Harper, and other actors such as former SAG President Edward Asner, Martin Sheen, Ed Harris and Nancy Sinatra immediately sued against the current SAG President Ken Howard and several SAG Vice Presidents to overturn the merger and separate the (now merged) two unions because of their claims that the election was improper. The lawsuit is currently working its way through the court system.
In 1991, he and his colleague Melanie Chartoff invented a device to recycle graywater in the home - The Graywater Rotating Drain. The following year, they finished and patented the product with the help of Ronald K. Ford.
Michael Bell was born in Brooklyn, New York to a Jewish family. He is married to actress Victoria Carroll and together they have a daughter, Ashley Bell. He is an animal rights activist. He is the godfather of actor Steve Guttenberg, who cites Bell as his inspiration to become an actor.
- The Addams Family - Buck
- Aladdin - Aziz
- Bonkers - The Collector
- The New Adventures of Captain Planet - Additional Voices
- CB Bears - Chief
- Capitol Critters - Additional Voices
- Challenge of the Super Friends - Riddler, Lex Luthor
- Commander Cork - Commander Cork
- Darkwing Duck - Quackerjack
- Devlin - Ernie Devlin
- Foofur - Harvey
- G.I. Joe - Blowtorch, Clutch, Duke, Lift-Ticket, Major Bludd, Scrap-Iron, Tollbooth, Xamot
- G.I. Joe: Renegades - Duke's Dad, Max Hauser
- Galtar and the Golden Lance - Yoggoth
- Harvey Birdman, Attorney at Law - Zan
- Inhumanoids - Auger, Blackthorn Shore, Eddie Augutter
- Jana of the Jungle - Dr. Ben Cooper
- Justice League - NTSB Inspector
- Kidd Video - Additional voices
- Midnight Patrol: Adventures in the Dream Zone - Sebastian
- Mister T - Additional Voices
- My Little Pony - Grogar
- Rambo and the Forces of Freedom - Additional Voices
- Robotix - Kontor, Lupus, Traxis, Venturak
- Rubik, the Amazing Cube - Renaldo Rodriguez, Rudy Rodriguez
- Rugrats - Chaz Finster, Drew Pickles, Grandpa Boris Kerpacketer
- Samurai Jack - Additional Voices
- Saturday Supercade - Additional Voices
- Scooby-Doo and Scrappy Doo - Additional Voices
- Snorks - Allstar Seaworthy, Big Weed
- Sonic the Hedgehog - Ixus Naugus
- Space Stars - Space Ace
- Speed Buggy - Mark
- Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends - Doctor Octopus
- Super Friends - Riddler, Zan, Gleek
- Super Friends: The Legendary Super Powers Show - Zan, Gleek
- Superman - Lex Luthor
- Talespin - Mr. Perry
- The Adventures of Don Coyote and Sancho Panda - Additional Voices
- The All-New Super Friends Hour - Zan, Gleek
- The Batman - Crime Boss 2, Reporter and Guard
- The Centurions - John Thunder
- The Dukes - Additional Voices
- The Completely Mental Misadventures of Ed Grimley - Additional Voices
- The Flintstone Kids - Mr. Billy Bad
- The Fonz and the Happy Days Gang - Additional Voices
- The Greatest Adventure: Stories from the Bible - Additional Voices
- The Incredible Hulk - Bruce Banner, Doctor Octopus, Additional Voices
- The Incredible Hulk - Zzzax
- The Karate Kid - Additional Voices
- The Kwicky Koala Show - George, Ranger Rangerfield
- The Mork & Mindy / Laverne & Shirley / Fonz Hour - Additional Voices
- The New Adventures of Jonny Quest - Doctor Forbes
- The Pirates of Dark Water - Additional voices
- The Plastic Man Comedy/Adventure Show - Plastic Man, Additional Voices
- The Real Adventures of Jonny Quest - Ezekiel Rage
- The Scooby & Scrappy-Doo/Puppy Hour - Dash, Duke
- The Smurfs - Grouchy Smurf, Handy Smurf, Johan, Lazy Smurf
- The Super Globetrotters - Additional Voices
- The Transformers - Bombshell, Brainstorm, First Aid, Prowl, Scrapper, Sideswipe, Swoop
- The World's Greatest Super Friends - Zan, Gleek
- Thundarr the Barbarian - Additional Voices
- Timeless Tales from Hallmark - Additional Voices
- Tom and Jerry Kids - Additional Voices
- Trollkins - Grubb Trollmaine
- Voltron - Lance, Sven Holgersson
- Voltron: The Third Dimension - Lance, Sven Holgersson
- W.I.T.C.H. - Crimson, Drake
- What-a-Mess - Father
- X-Men: Pryde of the X-Men - Cyclops
- Damaged Goods (1961 - aka V.D.) - Monk
- Trip To Where (1968) - Joe Hennessey
- A Wish for Wings That Work - Opus
- Alvin and the Chipmunks Meet Frankenstein - Dr. Frankenstein
- Asterix and the Big Fight - Sergeant Noodles (American dub)
- Cars - Additional Voices
- Felidae - Gregor Mendel (English dub) (rumored)
- G.I. Joe: The Movie - Duke, Blow-Torch, Lift Ticket, Xamot
- GoBots: Battle of the Rock Lords - Granite, Narligator, Slimestone
- Inhumanoids: The Movie - Auger, Blackthorn Shore
- Hollyrock-a-Bye Baby - Mr. Pyrite
- Homeward Bound II: Lost in San Francisco - Stokey
- How to Beat the High Co$t of Living - Tom
- Jetsons: The Movie - Board Member #1
- Little Nemo: Adventures in Slumberland - Oompy
- My Little Pony: The Movie - Grundle
- Porco Rosso - Additional Voices
- Rugrats Go Wild! - Chaz Finster, Drew Pickles
- Rugrats in Paris: The Movie - Chaz Finster, Drew Pickles
- Scooby Goes Hollywood - Jackie Carlson, Jesse Rotten, V.P.
- Scooby-Doo and the Loch Ness Monster - Duncan MacGubbin, McIntyre
- Tangled - Additional voices
- The Good, the Bad, and Huckleberry Hound - Bailiff, Laughing Donkey, Longhorn Steer, Station Announcer, Stinky Dalton
- The Little Troll Prince - Krill, Kristi and Sonja's Father, Ribo
- The Rugrats Movie - Chaz Finster, Drew Pickles, Grandpa Boris Kerpacketer
- Tom and Jerry: The Movie - Ferdinand, Straycatcher #1
- The Transformers: The Movie - Bombshell, Junkion, Prowl, Scrapper, Swoop
Video game roles
- Alpha Protocol - Alan Parker
- Arc the Lad: Twilight of the Spirits - Diekbeck
- Baldur's Gate - Galkin, Gate Warden, Nimbul
- Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn - Haer'Dalis, Vittorio
- Baldur's Gate II: Throne of Bhaal - Haer'Dalis, Omar Haraad
- Bloody Roar Extreme - Shenlong
- Champions of Norrath - Male Dark Elf Shadowknight
- Call of Duty - Sergeant Pavlov, Additional Voices
- Clive Barker's Jericho - Governor Cassus Vicus
- Condemned 2 - Magic Man
- Doom 3 - Dr. Pierce Rogers
- Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem - Peter Jacob
- Freedom Force- Merlin, Tochi/Super Samurai
- Icewind Dale - Larrel
- Legacy of Kain: Defiance - Raziel
- Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver - Melchiah, Raziel
- Soul Reaver 2 - Raziel
- Lost Odyssey - Sed
- League of Legends - Vladimir, Xin Zhao
- Madagascar (video game) - Nick the Camel
- Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty - Russian Soldier
- Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater - The Fear
- Ratchet & Clank Future: A Crack in Time - Lawrence
- Ratchet & Clank: All 4 One - Lawrence
- Ratchet & Clank: Going Commando - Biker #2, Interview Announcer, Mutant Crab, Protopet Announcer, Security System
- Ratchet & Clank: Up Your Arsenal - Comic Narrator, Lawrence, Trooper #1, Trooper #2
- Ratchet: Deadlocked - Lawrence, Vox
- Rise of the Kasai - Mailbisi
- Soldier of Fortune II: Double Helix - Dr. Dimitri Sestrogar
- Star Trek: Armada II - Additional Voices
- Sword of the Berserk: Guts' Rage - Guts
- The Bard's Tale - Finstown Villager, Light Fairy, Additional Voices
- Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos - Medivh, Druids of the Talon, Necromancer
- Xenosaga Episode II: Jenseits von Gut und Böse - Patriarch
- Diablo II: Lord of Destruction - The Druid class, Nihlathak
- World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria - Kairozdormu
- The Incredible Hulk 1982 Cartoon Webpage Interview with Michael Bell
- Koehler, Robert (September 16, 1988). "Stage Review Ladies of the Camellias Matches Duse, Bernhardt at West End". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2013.
- "Stage News & Notes". The Daily News of Los Angeles. December 9, 1988. Retrieved 2013.
- Hollywood Reporter - SAG/AFTRA Anti Merger Lawsuit Drops Demands.
- *U.S. Patent 5,274,861, "Gray water recycling system" (Jan. 4, 1994)
- Ten Fascinating Facts from Slimed!, the new Oral History of '90s Nickelodeon
- Screen Actors Guild Hollywood Board of Directors