A new category this year to commemorate a skill that is used quite frequently. A great animated or CGI character requires a great voice performance and the actors many times do no have other actors to play off of.
Giving out the first “I Am Groot” Voice Acting award is going to be great, but before we do, I am going to give out an honorary “I Am Groot” Award for one of the greatest voice acting performance of all time. The Honorary “I Am Groot” goes to Robin Williams for Aladdin. Easily one of the greatest performances ever. I almost named the award after EYG Hall of Famer Robin Williams, but I chose instead the great one line wonder from Guardians of the Galaxy, Groot, voiced by Vin Diesel.
Honorary winner of I Am Groot Award: Robin Williams as the Genie.
Anyway, back to 2016.
The top ten Voice Acting Performances are…
#10. Kevin Conroy (Batman: Killing Joke). Another EYG Hall of Famer, it was great to have Kevin Conroy back for the Killing Joke. Unfortunately, the film was not as good as it could have been. The part with Conroy and Mark Hamill was epic.
#9. Ginnifer Goodwin (Zootopia). One of the reasons that Zootopia works is because of the great voice work by Ginnifer Goodwin as Judy Hopps. Goodwin, who plays Snow White on ABC’s Once Upon a Time, brought that female rabbit to life in one of Disney’s big hits of the year.
#8. Bill Murray (The Jungle Book). Voice acting is not always animated. Some times it is in a live action film, with a CGI character. Murray’s casting as Baloo the Bear was perfect and his singing of “Bear Necessities” was a highlight of that film.
#7. Jason Bateman (Zootopia). Zootopia would not have worked without the great chemistry between Judy Hopps and Bateman’s character Nick Wilde. Bateman had the perfect delivery for the sneaky fox.
#6. Mark Hamill (Batman: Killing Joke). I don’t know how anyone expects to do a voice for an animated Joker because there is only one. Mark Hamill is clearly the best Joker voice ever, and his work in the Killing joke proves that.
#5. Ellen DeGeneres (Finding Dory). Ellen was able to take Dory, a potentially one-note character, and make her fit a full length film. Some times those secondary characters cannot carry their own film (looking at you, Minions) but Dory was a huge success. And a big part of that is Ellen’s great voice work.
#4. Adam West/Burt Ward (Batman: The Return of the Caped Crusaders). This brought every last bit of nostalgia from the old Batman series back to the big screen and I loved it. Having EYG Hall of Famer Adam West and Burt Ward able to be around to do the voices was extra special.
#3. Dwayne Johnson (Moana). The Rock as a Polynesian demi-god? Is that considered type casting? The Rock does a greta job in my favorite animated movie of the year. He even sings, the Lin-Manuel Miranda song “You’re Welcome.” What can’t the Rock do? The character of Maui certainly took a great deal from The Rock.
#2. Alan Tudyk (Rogue One). One of the standout stars of the new Star Wars movie, Rogue One, was K2SO and that former Imperial Droid was voiced by Firefly actor Alan Tudyk. Tudyk was also Heihei in Moana, Duke Weaselton in Zootopia, and had roles in Frozen and Big Hero 6. Clearly, if you want a successful animated film, you need to get Alan Tudyk to voice something. As for K2SO, he was considered by many to be one of the many highlights of Rogue One and I know I was upset when he met his fate.
and our first official “I Am Groot” Award winner goes to…
#1. Auli’i Cravalho (Moana). Moana herself was a huge hit. Her voice was just beautiful and she was amazing with her singing. This is all the more amazing when you consider that she began her career with Moana. She wasn’t even going to audition for the role since there were so many amazing entries. Goes to show you that you should always believe in yourself and give it your best effort.
Well, there is the list for the first ever “I Am Groot” Voice Acting Award. I wonder if Groot will win his own award in 2017 when Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 comes out?