Who are the voices behind Disney’s Hercules characters?
Disney’s animated feature film in 1997, Hercules, is arguably one of the entertainment giant’s most underrated films. The film tells the story of the half-mortal Greek god Hercules. Born as a god, Hercules loses his power thanks to Zeus’ evil brother, Hades, who instructs his minions – Pain and Panic – to kill Hercules so that he can take control of Mount Olympus.
The two henchmen fail, but although Hercules does not die, he loses his immortality. Zeus tells his son that he must perform a true act of heroism to restore his divinity. After engaging in various heroic deeds, Hercules still does not regain immortality until he selflessly jumps into the River Styx to save the soul of Theban Princess Megara.
The film fell short of box office expectations, but remains a favorite among die-hard Disney fans. The all-star cast no doubt helped the film retain its followers. So who are the voices behind the Disney characters? Hercules?
Tate Donovan plays the role of Hercules
Donovan is known for his roles in Friends, Mr. Sterling, and No ordinary family. When he voiced Hercules for Disney in the ’90s, the actor had done no voice work. The film’s supervising director liked Donovan’s charming and innocent personality and believed he was the best person to voice the strong but naive character, IMDb reports.
Actor Josh Keaton (Voltron: Legendary Defender) voiced teenage Hercules, and Roger Bart (The Women of Stepford) provided the singing voice of the main character.
Danny DeVito plays Philoctetes
DeVito’s character, Phil, trains Hercules to help him find his inner strength to regain his divinity. When creating the character, the animators were inspired by White as snow‘s Grumpy and Fancy‘s Bacchus and used DeVito’s “different mouth shapes” to bring Phil to life.
DeVito is best known for his role on the late 70s / early 80s TV show Taxi, which earned him a Golden Globe and several nominations. He has also appeared in several films, such as Jumanji and Mathilde, and currently plays Frank Reynolds in the sitcom It’s always nice in Philadelphia.
James Woods portrays the grumpy Hades
When Disney Imagineers were creating Hades, they envisioned a villain speaking in a threatening manner. However, when Hollywood star James Woods stepped onto the scene, his quick conversation style stole hearts and the producers turned Hades into a car salesman-like villain.
Woods has a long career spanning decades. He has appeared in various successful projects, including The suicide virgins, True crime, Salvador, and Promise. He also played himself in the animated television series The The Simpsons and family guy
Susan Egan expresses Hercules’ love interest, Megara
Megara is the beautiful sarcastic maid tasked with helping to kill Hercules, but ends up falling in love with the strong god. The two form a close bond, and through his death, Hercules regains his immortality.
Actress Susan Egan has worked extensively on Broadway, where she played Disney princesses such as Belle in the production of The beauty and the Beast.
Samantha Eggar and Rip Torn play Hera and Zeus
Eggar and Torn have lent their voices for the roles of the immortal parents of Hercules, Hera and Zeus.
Eggar appeared in The collector, The walking stick, and Walk, don’t run. And Torn is famous for playing the Boss in Men in black, CEO of OCP in Robocop, and the naval officer in Down Periscope.
Bobcat Goldthwait and Matt Frewer play Pain and Panic
Hades’ henchmen Pain and Panic were played by Bobcat Goldthwait and Matt Frewer respectively.
Goldthwait is known for his stand-up comedy. He also appeared in A crazy summer and Burglar. And Frewer is best known for his roles in movies. Honey, I cut down on the kids and Watchmen and the 80s TV show Maximum ceiling height.
The supporting cast from Disney’s “Hercules”
Carole Shelley (Cabaret), Amanda Plummer (pulp Fiction) and Paddy Edwards (ghost hunters) played the three Fates – Lachesis, Clotho and Atropos. They predicted the failure of Hades to conquer Mount Olympus.
And finally, Hal Holbrook (This certain summer) and Barbara Barrie (The crucible) expressed the parents of Hercules, Amphitryon and Alcmene.
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