Michael Winslow

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Michael Winslow
Winslow in 2008
Birth nameMichael Leslie Winslow
Born (1958-09-06) September 6, 1958 (age 65)
Spokane, Washington, U.S.
MediumStand-up, film, television, radio, voice-over
Years active1980–present
GenresBeatboxing, character comedy, physical comedy, improvisational comedy
Subject(s)Pop culture, American culture
Belinda Church
(m. 1985; died 1993)
[citation needed]
Angela Baytops
(m. 1997; div. 2001)
[citation needed]
Sharon Winslow
(m. 2003; div. 2014)
[citation needed]
Notable works and rolesComedy Sound Smackdown
Larvelle Jones in Police Academy
Radar Technician in Spaceballs

Michael Leslie Winslow (born September 6, 1958) is an American actor, comedian and beatboxer[1] billed as The Man of 10,000 Sound Effects[2] for his ability to make realistic sounds using only his voice. He is best known for his roles in all seven Police Academy films as Larvell Jones. He has also appeared in Spaceballs, Cheech and Chong's Next Movie and Nice Dreams, The Love Boat, and commercials for Cadbury and GEICO.

Early life[edit]

Winslow was born in Spokane, Washington, the son of Verdie and Robert Winslow. He grew up at Fairchild Air Force Base near Spokane, and later attended the Lisa Maile School of Acting, Modeling and Imaging.[3]

According to his own account, Winslow had few friends growing up. To pass time, he would imitate the sounds of engines, animals, flatulence, anything that made noise. Following high school and college he performed in nightclubs and theaters, where his sound imitation skills won him positive appraisal and enough money to move to and perform his act in Hollywood.[4]


His first television appearance was on The Gong Show in which he squeezed in sound-alikes of Benji the movie dog, Star Trek, and Jimi Hendrix's "Purple Haze".[5] He is best known for his role as Larvell Jones in the Police Academy series of movies and TV shows. He was cast in the role after he was seen opening for Count Basie.[6] In 1985, Island Records released a 12" of Michael Winslow entitled "I Am My Own Walkman". The song peaked at number 60 in Australia.[7]

In 1986, Winslow presented the Best Sound Effects Editing Oscar to Charles L. Campbell and Robert Rutledge for their work on Back to the Future.[8] During 1986 he played the role of Spencer, the Assistant Cruise Director on the ninth and final season of The Love Boat.

In 1987, Winslow appeared as a radar operator in the movie Spaceballs, in which he performs all the sound effects himself during one scene. Mel Brooks (who wrote, directed, produced, and co-starred in the film) stated that, by doing so, Winslow saved the film money. Winslow is also a motivational speaker. Since the fall of 2008, Winslow has hosted a motion-picture television series called Way Back Wednesday with Winslow on the cable superstation WGN America, which features movies mostly released in the 1980s. He continues to perform stand-up comedy around the globe.

Michael Winslow debuted his own iPhone and iPod Touch apps in 2010, bringing his sound effects and comedy to a mobile platform. ThatsKungFu generates Winslow's kung fu fighting sounds when the device is swung in a fighting motion.[9] NoizeyMan, billed as the "World's Noiziest App", contains video, ringtones, sound effects, and mini games, all created by Winslow.[10]

In 2011, Winslow worked with Orlando, Florida-based game development studio Phyken Media[11] on a mobile game for iOS[12] and Android platforms[13] entitled Wizard Ops Chapter 1,[14] providing all the sound effects for the game. He also lent his voice on Wizard Ops Tactics, a turn-based tactical game and spiritual successor to the previous game.

He was also featured in a commercial for GEICO Insurance during their "we hired a celebrity" ad campaign.[15]

In 2020, Winslow guest starred on the Dropout.tv show Game Changer as a substitute for Zachary Oyama. He won Episode 10 of Season 3, and the episode aired on 22 January 2021.

In 2021, Winslow auditioned for the sixteenth season of America's Got Talent.[16] Following the airing of his audition, he had a guest appearance on the Talent Recap Show[17] where he showed viewers how to make some of his most signature noises. Winslow was eliminated during the semi-finals.

In 2022, Winslow was heavily featured in a videogamedunkey YouTube video entitled Video Game Sound.[18] This video brought Winslow's work to a broad audience of video game fans. Videogamedunkey has talked about Winslow since the start of his channel, seemingly being a fan.[citation needed]


Year Title Role
1980 Cheech & Chong's Next Movie Welfare Comedian
1981 Underground Aces Nate
1981 Nice Dreams Superman Nut
1981 Space Stars Plutem (voice)
1982 Tag: The Assassination Game Gowdy
1982 Heidi's Song Mountain (voice)
1984 Police Academy Cadet Larvell Jones[19][20]
1984 Alphabet City Lippy
1984 Gremlins Mogwai / Gremlins (voice)
1984 Grandview, U.S.A. Spencer
1985 Police Academy 2: Their First Assignment Officer Larvell Jones[21][22]
1985 Starchaser: The Legend of Orin Voice
1986 Police Academy 3: Back in Training Sgt. Larvell Jones
1987 Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol Sgt. Larvell Jones[23][24]
1987 Spaceballs Radar Technician
1987 Three Crazy Jerks [de] Walker
1988 Police Academy 5: Assignment Miami Beach Sgt. Larvell Jones
1988 Starke Zeiten Mike
1988 Buy & Cell Sly
1988 Three Crazy Jerks II [de] Ronny
1989 Police Academy 6: City Under Siege Sgt. Larvell Jones
1989 Think Big Hap
1990 New Kids on the Block Voice
1990 Far Out Man Airport Cop
1990 Going Under Reporter
1993 Extralarge Dumas
1994 Police Academy: Mission to Moscow Sgt. Larvell Jones
1995 Be Cool about Fire Safety
1997-1998 Police Academy: The Series Sgt. Larvell Jones
1999 Lycanthrope Lee Davis
1999 Michael Winslow Live Himself
1999 The Blur of Insanity Horner's Friend 2
2000 He Outta Be Committed Jeremy
2001 The Trumpet of the Swan Chief (voice)
2002 The Biggest Fan Officer Man
2004 Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas Pedestrian (voice)
2005 Lenny the Wonder Dog John Wyndham
2006 Robot Chicken Sgt. Larvell Jones
2008 The Great Buck Howard Himself
2008 Redirecting Eddie Vaughn
2009 RoboDoc Dr. Murphy
2010 The History of the Typewriter recited by Michael Winslow Himself
2010 Tosh.0 Himself
2013 Blunt Movie Coach Al Jefferson
2013 Gingerclown Stomachcrumble
2013 Late Night with Jimmy Fallon Himself
2015 Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No! Brian Jonesy Jones
2015 Lavalantula Marty
2016 Enter the Fist and the Golden Fleece The Argonaut
2016 Characterz Police Detective
2016 2 Lava 2 Lantula Marty
2015 The Jack and Triumph Show Himself
2016 Renaissance Man Mike
2016 Hospital Arrest Judge Collaway
2017 Killing Hasselhoff Himself
2020 Game Changer Himself
2020 A Wrestling Christmas Miracle Judge Collaway
2021 America's Got Talent (Season 16) Himself
2021 Todd Jake
2022 Video Game Sound Himself[18]


  1. ^ Michael Winslow Showcase / American Beatbox Championships 2014 on YouTube
  2. ^ "Michael Winslow - The Man Of 10,000 Sound Effects". BroadwayWorld.com. 2008-07-12. Retrieved 2008-08-17.
  3. ^ Michael on BBC Daybreak (2013-02-15). "Man of 10,000 Sound Effects". Michael Winslow. Retrieved 2013-03-10.
  4. ^ Michael on BBC Daybreak (2013-02-15). "Behind the Sound". Michael Winslow. Archived from the original on 2013-10-14. Retrieved 2013-12-13.
  5. ^ The Gong Show, video tape recorded June 3, 1978
  6. ^ Archived at Ghostarchive and the Wayback Machine: "Michael Winslow Talks 'Police Academy' & Crazy Noises | Studio 10". YouTube.
  7. ^ Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992 (illustrated ed.). St Ives, N.S.W.: Australian Chart Book. p. 341. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.
  8. ^ Back to the Future Wins Sound Effects Editing: 1986 Oscars on YouTube
  9. ^ "iTunes Store". itunes.apple.com. Retrieved 2013-03-10.
  10. ^ "iTunes Store". itunes.apple.com. Retrieved 2013-03-10.
  11. ^ "Welcome to PhykenMedia". Phykenmedia.com. Retrieved 2013-03-10.
  12. ^ "Wizard Ops for iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad on the iTunes App Store". itunes.apple.com. 2012-11-06. Retrieved 2013-03-10.
  13. ^ "Wizard Ops - Android-apps op Google Play". Retrieved 2013-03-10.
  14. ^ "Wizard Ops". Wizard Ops. Archived from the original on 2013-04-05. Retrieved 2013-03-10.
  15. ^ hallowsnight (9 November 2007). "Geico spot with Michael Winslow". Archived from the original on 2021-12-13. Retrieved 22 October 2016 – via YouTube.
  16. ^ "'Police Academy' star dazzles 'AGT' judges with unique voice talent". TODAY.com. Retrieved 2021-07-13.
  17. ^ "Exclusive: 'AGT' Star Michael Winslow Gives a Crash Course in Voice Artistry". Talent Recap. 2021-07-14. Retrieved 2021-07-29.
  18. ^ a b Gastrow, Jason. "Video Game Sound". youtube.com.
  19. ^ Police Academy - Larvell Jones, M.D. Scene on YouTube
  20. ^ Police Academy - Beatbox Riot Scene on YouTube
  21. ^ Police Academy 2 - Loud Lunch Scene on YouTube
  22. ^ Police Academy 2 - He Thinks He's Bruce Lee Scene on YouTube
  23. ^ Police Academy 4 - Let's Get Physical Scene on YouTube
  24. ^ Police Academy 4 - Cops vs. Ninjas Scene on YouTube

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