So, Don La Fontaine, the primary movie trailer voice-over guy, died this last year. I’ve heard people suggest that they officially retire the phrase, “In a world” in his honour.
I think I recognized his voice in the trailer for Delgo. To me, that kind of exemplified what went wrong with Delgo. The studios turn ideas down because they don’t think they can market them. So if you’re billing yourself as the most expensive non-Hollywood animation in America, then you can’t market exactly the same way the studios would.
The guy had a marvelous voice, I won’t deny that. But it seems to me that his popularity was as much dictated by creative timidity. Similar to Trajan, his voice has become a signifier that means nothing more than “movie.”
But marketing calls for you to separate yourself from the herd, as well. So I feel like we should be identifying other wonderful voices and judging them from a standpoint other than “do they sound like Don La Fontaine?”
So, in the interests of helping, here is a list of other people who would make for great trailer voice-overs. I understand most of them are out of reach of the lowest-budget trailers, but at least it will get you thinking about trailer voices:
Lawrence Fishburne (See the CGI Ninja Turtles movie. It opens with him delivering the most ridiculous monologue available.)
James Earl Jones
Maurice Dean Wint
And why do I have no women on my list? Somehow I have a harder time thinking of actresses with very distinctive voices. But it does seem like quite the gap, doesn’t it? I’ll try to keep an ear out for some.