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Geek It! Animation Spotlight: Voice-actor Harry Shearer

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Believe it or not, Ned Flanders, Mr Burns, and Waylon Smithers have something in common. These characters are actually voiced by the same voice-actor, and that is the one and only … Harry Shearer.harry-shearer-2

Acknowledged as one of Simpsons‘ beloved voice-actors, he is the genius behind many iconic characters. Not only has he voiced popular characters such as Ned Flanders, Mr Burns, Waylon Smithers and Principal Skinner but he has also done other recognisable characters including Kent Brockman, Reverend Lovejoy, Dr. Hibbert, Lenny Leonard, Otto Mann and Rainier Wolfcastle.

It has been one lengthy journey for Harry Shearer. It all began when Simpsons‘ creator Matt Groening (who was a fan of Shearer’s work at the time, vice versa) asked Shearer if he wanted to be part of The Simpsons‘ cast.

Shearer was initially reluctant because he thought the recording sessions would be too much trouble. Traditionally, voice-acting roles required actors to record their parts separately. After being told that the actors would record their lines in a studio together, James L.Brooks finally managed to convince Shearer to the join the cast.

From Ned Flanders to Mr Burns, Shearer’s voice-acting talent is evident. To be able to create unique voices and bring the characters to life, Shearer’s versatility is incredible. But as the years went on, Shearer has been publicly vocal about his thoughts on the show’s declining quality, especially in terms of storytelling and comedy.

Unfortunately, after 26 years, Shearer announced his leave from The Simpsons on May 13, 2015. While we are sad about the news, we wish him all the best. To honour Shearer’s Simpsons’ journey, we have made a small compilation of Shearer’s character moments:

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