06/27/2005: Death of a Tigger...
Paul Winchell - the voice of Tigger in Winnie the Pooh - has died at age 82 in his Moorpark, Los Angeles, home.
”…Over six decades, Mr. Winchell was a master ventriloquist -- bringing dummies Jerry Mahoney and Knucklehead Smiff to life on television -- and an inventor who held 30 patents, including one for an early artificial heart he built in 1963.
But he was perhaps best known for his work as the voice of the lovable tiger in animated versions of A.A. Milne's "Winnie the Pooh" -- with his trademark "T-I-double grrrr-R."
Mr. Winchell first voiced Tigger in 1968 for Disney's "Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day," which won an Academy Award for best animated short film, and continued to do so through 1999's "Winnie the Pooh: Seasons of Giving."
Mr. Winchell voiced memorable characters in numerous animated features over the years for Disney and Hanna Barbera. He was Gargamel in "The Smurfs," and Boomer in "The Fox and the Hound."
Mr. Winchell said he always tried to look for characteristics and idiosyncrasies in the voices he created. For Tigger, he created a slight lisp and a laugh. He credited his wife, who is British, for giving him the inspiration for Tigger's signature phrase: TTFN. TA-TA for now.
In 1974, he earned a Grammy for best children's recording with "The Most Wonderful Things About Tiggers" from the feature "Winnie the Pooh and Tigger Too."
Karen on 06.27.05 @ 02:10 PM CST