Mark Elliott, the voice behind a vast range of Disney film trailers, has died aged 81.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Elliott died last Saturday (April 3) in a Los Angeles hospital after suffering two heart attacks. The voice actor was also battling lung cancer.
Elliott began his career in media in the late ’50s, working as a DJ on commercial radio. After two decades working for stations across Iowa, Ohio, Ontario, San Francisco and Los Angeles, Elliott began picking up voiceover work in 1977, with his early work including promotional material for Smokey and the Bandit, Star Wars and The Goodbye Girl.
In the same year, Disney’s in-house trailer producer Craig Murray hired Elliott for the trailer of the rerelease of Cinderella, which originally premiered in 1950. Elliott’s business relationship would stretch well into the 2000s, establishing him as the go-to for an extensive range of Disney marketing and the voice of the company.
“You think about decisions that were made and paths that were chosen and all that sort of thing, and [working for Disney] for me is the defining moment in my life, not just my career but in my life. Because it did is give me this identity which … continues to this day,” Elliott told VO Buzz Weekly in 2015.
“[Being the voice of Disney] is a wonderful touchstone for my career. If that’s the identity that I carry with me for the rest of my life, I wouldn’t have it any other way.”
Other notable series and films Elliott did voiceover work for include Chariots of Fire, The Muppets franchise, and the final episode of war comedy-drama series M*A*S*H, which he said was “the promo that I did that I am most proud of”.
“He was one of a kind … and kind is a great word to describe him,” fellow voiceover artist Charlie Van Dyke said of Elliott.
Another voiceover actor, Joe Cipriano, paid tribute to Elliott on Facebook, reflecting on the lessons he taught him. The two also starred in the 2013 comedy film In A World… together.
“Mark was a true gentleMAN – Getting to share all of our scenes in Lake Bell’s In a World was icing on the cake. I’m so sad about Mark’s passing,” Cipriano said.