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Top 10 Celebrity Voice-Over Performances In Pixar Movies

VO: Emily Brayton WRITTEN BY: Johnny Reynolds
These are the best and most dynamic voice over performances in Pixar movies! For this list, we’re looking at the finest and most dynamic vocal performances given by famous actors across Pixar’s vast library. We’ve included Larry the Cable Guy as Tow Mater from the “Cars” franchise, Albert Brooks as Marlin from the “Finding Nemo” franchise, Ellen DeGeneres as Dory from the “Finding Nemo” franchise and more! Who is your favourite over performer in Pixar movies?

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Top 10 Celebrity Voice-Over Performances in Pixar Movies

Without these performances, Pixar just wouldn’t be the same. Welcome to MsMojo, and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Celebrity Voice-Over Performances in Pixar Movies.

For this list, we’re looking at the finest and most dynamic vocal performances given by famous actors across Pixar’s vast library.

#10: Larry the Cable Guy as Tow Mater

“Cars” franchise (2006-17)

The “Cars” movies have featured many funny and unique characters, though none left quite as lasting of an impression as Larry the Cable Guy’s rusty tow truck.The stand-up comedian’s Southern accent lends itself incredibly well to the design and characterization of Mater. But it’s his cheerful and bouncy demeanor that made for a memorable effect. As the franchise’s comedic relief, Mater is one of the friendliest vehicles Lightning McQueen comes across in Radiator Springs. And it’s Larry the Cable Guy’s prowess and presence, carried over from his routines, that makes Mater such an entertaining side character.

#9: Albert Brooks as Marlin

“Finding Nemo” franchise (2003-)

Though he may not be as popular as some other characters from the franchise, Marlin’s characterization is crucial for both films to work. And Albert Brooks’ performance as the neurotic, overprotective father is evidence of an actor completely understanding the role he’s been given. He’s shown as being far from perfect, but his overbearing persona goes hand-in-hand with Brooks’ sorrowful and oftentimes irritated delivery. Both movies feature zany and wild characters, but none are as important as Marlin. Brooks’ performance solidified the heart of the story in the first film, which was explored further in the sequel.

#8: Don Rickles as Mr. Potato Head

“Toy Story” franchise (1995-)

This late great comedian was one of many to lend his talents to the supporting cast of Pixar’s first feature. But it’s his humorously curmudgeonly personality that made him stand out from the pack. Mr. Potato Head is far from Andy’s favorite toy, and he often looks for ways to criticize Woody, who does hold that position. Rickles’ performance as the grumpy spud was enhanced thanks to his naturally antagonizing tone. And the loss of this presence is something that will undoubtedly be sorely missed in “Toy Story 4.”

#7: Patton Oswalt as Remy

“Ratatouille” (2007)

Who would’ve thought that Pixar could make us all relate to a rat? The story of this fan-favorite film follows Remy as he desperately tries to achieve his dream of becoming a chef. Part of what makes Remy such a relatable character is the fact that he’s an underdog. But the way in which he is written went from good to great when Patton Oswalt stepped into the character. Oswalt’s soft and friendly voice is just what Remy needed to become the hero we could root for. His warmth and love when speaking about food is palpable and his determination makes the movie soar.

#6: Tim Allen as Buzz Lightyear

Toy Story” franchise (1995-)

Few Pixar stars have been iconized with their character the way that Tim Allen has with his proud toy astronaut. When he first premiered, Buzz Lightyear of Star Command was the complete opposite of what Allen was known for. But his gruff voice lent itself well to the brave and adventurous hero, which would play incredibly well off of co-star Tom Hank’s eccentric Woody. Allen would get the chance to explore the more fun side of Buzz in the sequels as his relationship with the other toys grew. Plus, it’s hard to imagine any other actor delivering some of Buzz’s classic lines.

#5: Holly Hunter as Helen Parr / Elastigirl

“The Incredibles” franchise (2004-18)

There isn’t much in the world that’s as powerful as a mother’s love, which is something that can be felt in every line uttered by the matriarch in this Pixar favorite. Holly Hunter has always been known for bringing a certain edge to her performances. But her portrayal as Helen Parr is arguably one of her best. At times she can be warm and immensely caring, while at others she can be downright fierce. These dynamic qualities are what make her an interesting character. It’s Hunter’s strong and layered delivery that makes us admire her even more.

#4: Amy Poehler as Joy

“Inside Out” (2015)

Sometimes Pixar’s casting is just pitch-perfect. Such was the case when Amy Poehler was cast in the role of the emotion Joy in “Inside Out”. The comedian would bring her natural upbeat personality over from “SNL” and “Parks and Recreation.” And while her brand of comedy fit extremely well with the role, there was something a bit more special to her performance. Over the course of the movie, Joy learned that it’s okay to feel sad. Poehler’s presentation during these revelatory scenes is what gave the character much more depth. Quiet and understated, yet powerful in every sense, Poehler left every audience member with tears in their eyes.

#3: Billy Crystal as Michael ‘Mike’ Wazowski

“Monsters, Inc.” franchise (2001-)

While John Goodman’s larger-than-life performance as Sully is certainly a delight, it’s Mike Wazowski that brings the most personality to these films. As the most anxious monster around, Mike would need a voice actor who could capture the hilarious neurosis the character required. Luckily, comedian Billy Crystal absolutely nailed it. Mike’s sarcastic quips and humorous yelps seemed to have been written with Crystal’s vibrant voice in mind. It’s Mike’s resolve to succeed, however, that playfully goes against what we think of him as well as Crystal’s signature voice.

#2: Ellen DeGeneres as Dory

“Finding Nemo” franchise (2003-)

On paper, a character who constantly forgets everything might seem a bit annoying. It’s proof of DeGeneres’s quick comedic delivery that this character is actually one of the most popular Pixar has ever created. In “Finding Nemo,” she’s the perfect supporting figure to play off of Albert Brooks’ much more normal Marlin. And in “Finding Dory,” DeGeneres was given the chance to flesh out the role by exploring a much more personal arc. Dory is inherently innocent and precious. But it is Ellen’s light-hearted and friendly tone that made the character much more than she could’ve been and led to her starring role.

Before we get to our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions:

Kelsey Grammer as Stinky Pete the Prospector

“Toy Story” franchise (1995-)
Steve Buscemi as Randall Boggs

“Monsters, Inc.” franchise (2001-)

Samuel L. Jackson as Lucius Best / Frozone

“The Incredibles” franchise (2004-)

#1: Tom Hanks as Sheriff Woody
“Toy Story” franchise (1995-)

Of all the actors to voice Pixar characters, none have shown quite the range within their performances as Tom Hanks. In his hands, Woody would grow to be one of the more diverse characters in Pixar’s roster. It’s a testament to Hanks’ skill as an actor that the character could be so deeply flawed, yet simultaneously sympathetic. And that’s just in the first movie. By the end of the third one, Woody would be known as heroic, compassionate, determined, and loving. And it’s all thanks to the voice-actor behind him. Though the memorable addition of his pal Jessie in “Toy Story 2” is also a highlight, there’s simply no topping the original cowboy.

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