Last week, Minnie Mouse lost her voice, as voice actress Russi Taylor sadly passed away.
The much-loved voice actress passed after losing a private battle with colon cancer. Her loss has saddened not only the voice-acting industry, but also the world.
In memory of Russi Taylor, we look back at a few of her most beloved roles.
1. Minnie Mouse
Easily the most well-known of Taylor’s characters is her long-running role as classic Disney icon Minnie Mouse.
Taylor was the seventh person to voice Minnie, taking over from Janet Waldo in 1986. Taylor’s performance was credited for transforming Minnie from a one-dimensional girlfriend into her own character, able to exist separately from Mickey.
In 1991, Russi Taylor married Wayne Allwine, then the voice of Mickey Mouse. They remained together until Allwine’s death in 2009.
2. Huey, Dewey, and Louie
From 1987 to 1990, Taylor voiced Huey, Dewey, and Louie in the original Ducktales series.
Prior to Ducktales, the Duck triplets had almost been treated as a single character. While Taylor used a similar voice for all three, she was also the first to give them slightly different personalities. Huey as a committed boy scout, Dewey the more sensitive triplet, and Louie the rebel. The characterisation Taylor helped to create followed the characters through later appearances in Quack Pack and the 2017 Ducktales reboot.
Taylor did not reprise her role as Huey, Dewey, and Louie in the reboot, as Disney chose to give each of them their own voice actor to portray them as true individuals. However, the actress guest starred as a young Donald Duck in season 2, using the same voice she once used for the triplets.
3. Martin Prince
Ever since the record-breaking series began, Russi Taylor has been a permanent fixture on The Simpsons. Taylor voiced Martin Prince, Springfield Elementary’s resident nerd. While Martin is most often an annoyance to Bart, the two are sometimes portrayed as ‘friends’, usually when Bart wants to use Martin’s wealth to his advantage.
The Simpsons will likely choose to retire Martin as a character following Taylor’s death, as with other properties when a voice actor passes away.
4. Baby Gonzo
From 1984 to 1991, Taylor voiced ‘Baby Gonzo’ in the Muppet Babies animated series. The series was inspired by a popular dream sequence in The Muppets Take Manhattan.
Muppet Babies ran for an impressive eight seasons, making Baby Gonzo one of Taylor’s longest running roles. Aside from Baby Gonzo, she also voiced the Duck triplets in the anti-drug special Cartoon All-Stars To The Rescue.
Taylor voiced Phantasma, one of a group of monster children placed under Scooby and Shaggy’s care in the popular animated special Scooby Doo And The Ghoul School.
The classic character has experienced a boost in popularity recently, with Taylor reprising the role of Phantasma for a special episode of OK K.O!. The episode had the students of Ghoul School visiting the character of Enid.
Rest in peace, Russi Taylor. Your voice will live on forever in the characters you brought to life.