Tony Jay

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Tony Jay
Tony Jay.jpg
Born 2 February 1933 (1933-02-02)
London, England, UK
Died 13 August 2006 (2006-08-14) (aged 73)
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Cause of death Complications following endoscopic surgery
Resting place Forest Lawn Memorial Park (Hollywood Hills)
Nationality British
Citizenship United Kingdom,
United States
Alma mater Pinner County Grammar School
Occupation Actor, voice actor, singer
Years active 1966–2006
Known for Judge Claude Frollo from Disney's "The Hunchback of Notre Dame"
Height 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)
Religion Judaism
Spouse(s) Marta MacGeraghty (1974-2006; his death)
Children Adam

Tony Jay (2 February 1933 – 13 August 2006) was a British actor, voice actor and singer. A former member of the Royal Shakespeare Company, he was known for his voice work in animation, film and video games. Jay was particularly well known for his distinctive baritone voice, which often led to him being cast in villainous roles. He was best known as the voice of Judge Claude Frollo from Disney's The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Megabyte from ReBoot, and the Elder God (and the original Mortanius) from Legacy of Kain.


Tony Jay appeared on-screen in several films and on television, including Love and Death, Night Court, The Golden Girls, Twins, and Eerie, Indiana. He also developed a career in the theatre, in plays such as The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby, Great Expectations, and The Merchant of Venice. Jay's other non-animation roles included Paracelsus on the 1987 CBS TV series Beauty and the Beast; Minister Campio on Star Trek: The Next Generation; and Lex Luthor's villainous aide-de-camp Nigel St. John in Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman.

He was also well known for his role as the voice of the virus Megabyte in the computer animated television show ReBoot (1994-2001), and for his voice-work as Judge Claude Frollo in Disney's 1996 animated film version of The Hunchback of Notre Dame and in the Walt Disney World version of the nighttime light and fireworks show Fantasmic!. He also previously voiced Monsieur D'Arque, the amoral asylum superintendent, in Disney's 1991 hit animated feature Beauty and the Beast. In 1995-96, Jay had another animation voice as he voiced a vile alien warlord named Lord Dregg, the new main villain of the original 1987 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles animated TV series in the show's last two seasons.

He is also well-known among fans of the 1996-2003 video game series Legacy of Kain for his voicing of the original Mortanius and of the Elder God, alongside several other minor characters. He was also the successor of actor George Sanders from Disney's 1967 animated film adaptation of The Jungle Book in the role of Shere Khan. Jay voiced the character in Disney's animated series TaleSpin (1990–91) and reprised his role of the character for fifteen years after it ended until his death. The Jungle Book 2 (2003) was his final reprisal of the role.

Jay was a devotee of classic Broadway, and made several recordings and performances of old-time Broadway lyrics, in spoken-word form. A CD of these readings, Speaking of Broadway, was released in 2005; a version recorded years earlier of the same collection was titled Poets on Broadway, as is his website. It features Jay reciting lyrics written by the likes of Noël Coward, Ira Gershwin and Oscar Hammerstein and was composed entirely by him, according to the CD liner notes.

Personal life[edit]

Jay was born in London in 1933. He attended Pinner County Grammar School. He was a member of the Royal Air Force before leaving it at the age of twenty. He moved to South Africa in 1955 and was involved with many radio productions on the SABC Commercial Radio Service, Springbok Radio, until 1980. He later moved to the United States, and became a naturalized citizen. He was Jewish.[1]


In April 2006, he underwent surgery in Cedars-Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles to remove a non-cancerous tumour from his lungs.[2] He never fully recovered from the operation and was in a critical condition throughout the following months. Jay eventually died on 13 August 2006 at the age of 73. He was survived by his wife Marta and son Adam. He is also survived by his brother Robert and sister in law Lynda.[citation needed]


Notable characters Tony Jay voiced include:



Video games[edit]


Notable projects for which Tony Jay provided narration include:


Notable projects for which Tony Jay narrated include:

  • LBC Radio (London) - Tony Jay narrated voice-overs for the station's main jingle packages between 1974 and 1980.
  • SPRINGBOK RADIO (South Africa) - Tony Jay acted, wrote & produced many radio series in South Africa on the Commercial Radio Service, Springbok Radio.
  • Kirby's Dream Land 2 commercial.


  1. ^ "Tony Jay—Obituary". The Associated Press. 21 August 2006. Retrieved 2013-08-28. 
  2. ^ "Daytime Emmy nominated Tony JayLoses Fight to Recover". Archived from the original on 2006-09-07. Retrieved 2010-04-14. 

External links[edit]