Big things are happening on TV Tropes! New admins, new designs, fewer ads, mobile versions, beta testing opportunities, thematic discovery engine, fun trope tools and toys, and much more - Learn how to help here and discuss here.
A famous actor whose animated counterpart is essentially the actor themselves. Actors playing themselves is an admittedly common occurrence, but one that makes less sense in animation.
Some of this began with traditional 2D animated movies; Disney'sAladdin gave top billing to Robin Williamsnote even though his contract specifically requested that he not receive top billing, in return for his working for scale, in a very successful example, partly because he was enough of a character to be funny on his own. Movie makers noticed they could bank on an actor's star power even if viewers never saw the actor.
Later, it became common to give voice acting jobs to actors who didn't traditionally perform voice acting, just to get their names on movie posters. One simple example is for the actors to play themselves, with the assumption that the audience will recognize them anyway. This can be taken to extremes when the animated character is modified to look like the actor, even if that requires a bizarre caricature that makes no sense in the story. This has a strange effect: the character feels less genuine, as if the writers just "stole" the actor to make into a character.
The transition from 2D cel animation to computer animated "3D" films, both in the stylistic and literal sense, in both movies and computer games, has made accurately ink-suiting actors much easier, therefore introducing an element of "because we can" to the proceedings. It's also become common practice, especially in video games, for an ink suited actor to be showing going through the motions and "acting", while someone else (usually a name actor) provides the voice.
Many animation purists (and voice actors such as Billy West) criticize the practice, calling it "stunt casting" and denigrating it as breaking Suspension of Disbelief or pandering to the actor. Some also insinuate that big names are cast instead of talented unknowns because the story couldn't support itself on its own, and the talent hired is not really relevant to the story or role anyway. In addition, the studios who do this often seem to assume that voice acting is a simpler facsimile of "real" acting; in fact, it requires a completely different set of skills.
The advantage to this is it can assist the animator in getting the details and mannerisms to look correct, since it is even easier to reproduce the mannerisms of an actor in three dimensions as in (the already commonly done) two dimensions. Also, there is more "acting" in voice acting than most people think; it is almost impossible to voice act properly without making facial expressions and gestures in front of the microphone.
Note that actors essentially portraying themselves, as on The Simpsons, is not an example of this trope; that's basically an animated Special Guest. Note also that sometimes animated characters in live-action films are intentionally made to look like their actors so that the character can "become real" for a scene or two; two good examples are Gollum from The Lord of the Rings and Davy Jones from Pirates of the Caribbean.
Elements of actors' mannerisms and personality are often worked into their characters; while filming A Bug's Life, for example, Pixar often films big-name voice actors and then adds a few of their gestures to their characters. This trope is for more severe cases, where the creators basically just took their voice actor and made him a bug/robot/genie/whatever.
See also Serkis Folk, where a motion capture suit is used to model an actor's movements which is then overlaid with the CGI character, and its traditional animation counterpart Rotoscoping where film of an actor is taken and the animation drawn on top of it. Compare "No Celebrities Were Harmed", where the celebrity caricature is voiced by an impersonator, and Comic Book Fantasy Casting, which includes the modelling of a cartoon or computer character on an actor who does not voice them. Frequently Lost in Translation in dubs, since the animated character looks the same, but the voice actor is different. For bonus celebrity fanservice, see also Hey, It's That Voice!.
The Cowboy Bebop movie has a minor character voiced by Renji Ishibashi who looks like Renji Ishibashi and is even named Renji. However, this is a bit of a subversion — the writer was having trouble writing the scene, so they based one of the robbers off of Ishibashi. Shinichiro Watanabe later half-jokingly offered the part to Ishibashi, and he accepted.
Ultimate Nick Fury of Ultimate Marvel is modeled after Samuel L. Jackson with his permission. Turns out Jackson allowed it so that he could play Nick Fury in live-action films, starting with the Iron Man series.note Ultimate Fury started out as an original design (possibly with hints of Wesley Snipes) in the pages of Ultimate X-Men. It wasn't until Bryan Hitch redesigned him for Ultimates that he became Mr. Jackson.
This trope, taken Up to Eleven, essentially kicked off the series American Flagg. Reuben Flagg was an actor living on Mars and starring in the hit TV series Mark Thrust, Sexus Ranger. But a CGI technology called Tromplography™ perfectly duplicated Flagg's character, making Flagg himself superfluous. Flagg was fired, then drafted into the actual Plexus Rangers.
Despite its fixation on maintaining its iconic characters, Disney also used obvious caricatures of its stock company voice actors in many films — thinly-disguised versions of Paul "Tigger" Winchell and Buddy Hackett show up a lot. During the golden age of Disney Animation basing characters on their voice actors was virtually company policy. Some examples include:
The Genie from Aladdin, possibly the textbook example of this trope, does bear some facial resemblance to Robin Williams. Except for the beard. And the muscles. And being blue, of course.
Also from that movie, Iago's animator Will Finn admitted he tried to copy Gilbert Gottfried, down to the teeth, and while Jonathan Freeman is not physically like Jafar, his expressions and gestures were copied straight.
According to the DVD Commentary for The Jungle Book, the characters were designed to resemble their voice actors. This is most apparent in Shere Khan... look at a picture of him and then look at George Sanders and it's obvious.
King Louie is Louis Prima — to the point where it raised legal issues when The Jungle Book's cast was adapted to TaleSpin (and Louie remains conspicuously absent from Disney's sequel).
Compare Baloo from that film, Little John from Robin Hood, and Thomas O'Malley in The Aristocats. All are practically an expy of the other and all were voiced by Phil Harris. Partly explained by the fact that these films were made during The Dark Age of Animation and Disney was cutting corners all over the place.
Oliver & Company featured Billy Joel as Dodger. Despite being a dog, Dodger still manages to bear some resemblance to Billy Joel.
Irene Bedard was the speaking voice and the physical model for the title character.
Christian Bale's character, Thomas, resembles the actor. Bale admitted as much in a 1995 interview for Disney Adventures, adding that Disney had even sent in an artist to sketch the actor's movements during recording.
The moose brothers Rutt and Tuke from Brother Bear, being animal versions of the McKenzie Bros. from SCTV, would bear some resemblance to Rick Moranis and Dave Thomas respectively. Rutt was modeled with Rick's rounded eyes and lower lip, while Tuke was drawn with Dave's eyebrows.
Pirates of the Caribbean: Davy Jones' facial features, especially his eyes and cheekbones, were modeled directly from Bill Nighy's head using motion-capture dots on his face.
Kathryn Beaumont, Ed Wynn, and Jerry Colonna as Alice in Wonderland's Alice, Mad Hatter, and March Hare, respectively.
Hans Conried as both Captain Hook and Mr. Darling in Peter Pan. Not only did he voice both characters, he modeled for them as well. This was one of the few things that the film had in common with the original stage play.
Also, in the same film, Bobby Driscoll as Peter Pan himself and Kathryn Beaumont as Wendy.
In Sleeping Beauty, Merryweather bears more than a passing resemblance to her voice actress, Barbara Luddy.
When they were working on Pinocchio, the animators had a hard time trying to come up with a design for Geppetto until they cast character actor, Christian Rub for the role.
All four main characters in Wreck-It Ralph resemble their voice actors. Check this image◊ and you'll notice that their resemblance is pretty close: Ralph himself is a spot on version of John C. Reilly, while Felix's resemblance to Jack McBrayer is also pretty spot on. Calhoun looks like a slightly younger version of Jane Lynch, and Vanellope von Schweetz is a young caricature of Sarah Silverman.
While the creators of Frozenopenly stated that Anna and Elsa have more (respectively) of Kristen Bell's and Idina Menzel's mannerisms and only a few of their features (which is kind of necessary as they are supposed to be sisters), Anna's strong◊ resemblance◊ to Kristen Bell is pretty noticeable, including Bell's lazy eye and eyebrows.
In The Lion King, Jeremy Irons was pleased that he could "see himself" in Scar, as animator Andreas Deja watched Irons' movies to incorporate his tics and mannerisms, and the lion's baggy eyes made Scar even closer to the original.
Justified in Enchanted, where the live-action actors have animated counterparts in the fairy tale world, although the extent of the resemblance varies. Animated Giselle looks more like a generic princess than Amy Adams, but Timothy Spall as Animated Nathaniel is such a spot on caricature that you know it's him even before his first line of dialogue. Animated Edward's resemblance to James Marsden and Animated Narissa's resemblance to Susan Sarandon are somewhere in between.
The Incredibles: Samuel L. Jackson animated as-is to create Lucius/Frozone. On a side note Mr. Incredible/Bob Parr's facial features are based on a cross between Craig T. Nelson's face and a Greek hoplite's helmet.
Helen/Elastigirl isn't too far off from Holly Hunter.
Gilbert Huph and actor Wallace Shawn look fairly similar, too.
Wayne Knight as Al in Toy Story 2. It could be coincidence; either way, it was a character model that seriously suited the character.
Word of God stated on the DVD Commentary of that film notes that Dory from Finding Nemo looks an awful lot like Ellen Degeneres, despite being a fish. Once again, it was unintentional, it's just a result of the artists watching the footage of the voice actors and inserting subtle facial expressions, etc. Willem Dafoe's character, Gill, even has the same facial scar as the actor.
Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within (technically not anime, technically not Western Animation): Features photo-real (by late-1990s standards) representations of Alec Baldwin, Peri Gilpin, James Woods and Donald Sutherland. Averted, however, with regards to lead character Aki Ross, who despite the first name suggesting otherwise is depicted as Caucasian (the daughter of Sutherland's character) and she bears no physical resemblance to Asian-American voice actress Ming Na.
Even more obvious when the Ghost of Christmas Past has Jim Carrey's face.
Averted mostly in his early films, but Don Bluth eventually hopped on this bandwagon when the Disney Renaissance was gaining speed. The most notable examples occur in Thumbelina, with Mrs. Toad being mostly modeled after her voice actress, the Spanish actress/guitarist Charo (and jarringly so), and in Anastasia, where the titular character has a passing resemblance to Meg Ryan.
Terry-Thomas voices one of the tailors in The Daydreamer. The character is far stouter than the fairly skinny Thomas, but shares his famed gap-toothed grin. (As does his character Sir Hiss in Disney's Robin Hood, with his forked snake tongue often wiggling through the gap.)
Most of the human characters in Curious George look startlingly like their voice actors (Maggie isDrew Barrymore, Mr. Bloomsberry is Dick Van Dyke, Junior isDavid Cross etc). Notable exception: Ted, who looks nothing like Will Ferrell and more like... well... The Man In The Yellow Hat.
Curious example in The Lord of the Rings: though Andy Serkis played Gollum even on the set, the CGI design wasn't originally based on him, until in 2001 he was cast to play Sméagol (Gollum's previous self) for a flashback scene in Return of the King, and they redesigned it so they could show the transformation. They weren't in time to change the design for Fellowship though, but he hardly shows up in four scenes, all of which are in the dark, so it's no big deal.
One has to wonder, though, why they didn't replace Gollum with the new design in the Extended Edition of Fellowship, released just a month before The Two Towers. It's particularly egregious having in mind that more than half of his screentime in Fellowship wasn't in the theatrical cut.
In Epic Queen Tara looks an awful lot like Beyonce.
President Business is a Lego minifig designed to look as much like Will Ferrell as a minifig can. This is intentional, as the character is a real world representation of Finn's father, played by Ferrell.
Chris Pratt has said in an interview Emmet, despite having the most generic and simplistic face a Lego minifig can have, has some subtle facial features that resemble his own, such as the proportions of the mouth and eyebrows.
Corpse Bride is about a man named Victor Van Dort accidentally marrying a dead woman... but with the character's strong resemblance to his voice actor, it might as well be about Johnny Depp marrying a dead woman instead. Also, resemblance to Helena Bonham-Carter can be seen in both Emily, who Bonham Carter voices, and Victoria, who is voiced by Emily Watson. This is because Victoria was originally going to be voiced by Bonham Carter, and as such was designed to look like her. When Bonham Carter asked to voice Emily instead, Emily was redesigned to look like her as well.
Julie in Heavy Metal 2000, modeled after and voiced by B-movie actress Julie Strain. The same actress is in the same Ink Suit in the game adaptation, F.A.K.K.2.
Three Muppet folk singers who appeared in skits on talk shows and the first season of The Muppet Show were Foam Suit Actor versions of Jim Henson, Frank Oz and Jerry Juhl. In one talk show appearance, the puppeteers wore identical outfits for the interview afterwards.
In the first couple episodes of The Muppet Show, the human guest stars were presented with Muppet version of themselves for the closing good-bye. This practice was quickly dropped, possibly due to expense, possibly due to it being slightly creepy.
Many movie-based games and TV shows have the likenesses and voices of the actors who played them in the live action version.
Beyond: Two Souls features Ellen Page. They are playing this trope up to the point where Page is credited as "starring Ellen Page", instead of the more usual "featuring the voice of Ellen Page".
Backfired badly when the game incorporated a shower sequence during a cutscene. Although Page had not intended for there to be any nudity, and indeed the cutscene itself shows none, hackers were able to manipulate the camera, revealing the "nude" model of the actress that was "off-camera".
BioWare has been doing this a lot in their games since they started using modern game engines:
Mass Effect 3 also adds in Jessica Chobot, a real-life journalist playing fictional journalist Diana Allers, with her actual likeness, and Keith David as Admiral Anderson. The humanoid version of EDI also bears more than a passing resemblance, physically, to voice actress Tricia Helfer.
An unintentional example is Bastila Shan from Knights of the Old Republic. When developers realised her official artwork greatly resembled Jennifer Hale, they decided to run with the idea and redesign the character to include these similarities.
Speaking of the Star Wars Expanded Universe, several of the characters in The Force Unleashed are modeled after their voice actors, most notably Sam Witwer as Galen Marek (when he joined Smallville it can be a bit surprising), Nathalie Cox as Juno Eclipse, and Cully Fredrickson as Rahm Kota. As with the above example, it works rather nicely.
The use of motion capture to better animate the characters' faces (by capturing the facial expressions of the voice actors) was a huge factor in this.
Another notable example would be the former Mandalorian turned Psycho for Hire Montross from Bounty Hunter who was rendered in the likeness of Clancy Brown.
In fact, Ink Suit Acting in LucasArtsStar Wars games goes all the way back to Dark Forces 2: Jedi Knight with the main characters rendered in the likeness of the actors who portrayed them in the live action cutscenes. Jason Court hasn't been Kyle Katarn's voice actor for everything, but his appearance has continued on through several additional games.
A slightly different example: the Star Wars Customizable Card Game's portraits for Talon Karrde and Corran Horn depicted their creators (Timothy Zahn and Michael J. Stackpole) in costume as their characters.
Eddie Riggs in was deliberately designed to look a bit like Jack Black, even before it was a done deal that Black was playing him. There's also Ozzy Osbourne as the Guardian of Metal, Lemmy as the Kill Master, Rob Halford as The Fire Baron, Brian Posehn as the Hunter, and Kyle Gass as the neurotic cannoneer.
Dead Space's major characters are modeled after their voice actors. Peter Mensah does Hammond, Tonantzin Carmelo does Kendra, Navid Negahban does Mercer, Keith Szarabajka does Kyne and Iyari Limon does Nicole. The biggest exception was Isaac Clarke in the original, who had no dialogue (beyond screaming and grunting) and whose face was only shown at the end. When he started talking and showing his face more in 2, they changed his model to look much closer to his voice actor, Gunner Wright; and as they recast Nicole, they changed her model to match her new actress, Tanya Clarke.
Agent 47 in the Hitman series of video games is closely modeled on the voice actor portraying him, David Bateson. He was originally considered to play 47 in the Hitman movie, but Bateson didn't feel he was athletic enough for the role.
Assassin's Creed had Kristen Bell as lab assistant Lucy Stillman. Or perhaps lab assistant Lucy Stillman as Kristen Bell. Jarring.
Some of the characters in II also look like their voice actors. This is particularly obvious in the live-action prequel Lineage, although Marco Barbarigo and every Auditore except Giovanni had a different voice actor in the game (Ezio was the only character to not physically resemble his Lineage counterpart).
All over the place in Battlefield 3; Agent Gordon is clearly Glenn Morshower, Blackburn is Gideon Emory with shorter hair, Vladimir is Ilia Volok with extra scars...a weird case, though, is Dima, who is modeled after Oleg Taktarov, but voiced by Andre Sogliuzzo.
Heavy Rain: The four main characters basically look like their voice/mocap actors. Especially Scott Shelby looks exactly the same as the actor who plays him.
The original Onimusha Trilogy loved this. Japanese Actor Takeshi Kaneshiro was used as the basis (and voice actor) of hero Samanosuke in the first and third games, while Jubei Yagyu in the second was based on the late Yusaku Matsuda. In the third game, Samanosuke is joined by french soldier Jaques Blanc, based off none other than Jean Reno, who also voiced him in the Japanese version (The American version uses a different English voice actor, but keeps Reno's French dialogue).
EA's Everything or Nothing has almost every major character modeled on and voiced by a well known face. While Bond, M, Q, and Jaws resembling Pierce Brosnan, Judi Dench, John Cleese, and Richard Keil was obligatory, Willem Dafoe, Shannon Elizabeth, Heidi Klum and singer Mya all have their respective characters based on them. As a result, EON is often looked upon as the fifth Brosnan Bond movie and his true swan song (it was made after Die Another Day but before he was replaced by Daniel Craig).
For the remake of GoldenEye Wii, in addition to Daniel Craig lending his likeness to James Bond, Alec, Xenia, and Natalya are modeled after their voice actors.
Phil Collins is the first celebrity to appear As Himself in the GTA series in Vice City Stories. There is even a mission involving him where the player must prevent the Forelli mob from sabotaging Phil's concert.
In Grand Theft Auto IV, Ricky Gervais and Katt Williams appear as themselves for the Split Sides Comedy Club routines (with Frankie Boyle added for the Lost and the Damned DLC) while former UFC fighter Bas Rutten appears as a hyper-masculine parody of himself in The Men's Room in-game TV show.
L.A. Noire used Motion Scan technology, developed specifically for the game, to fully capture the actors' facial expression. Recognizable actors among the cast include Aaron Staton of Mad Men and John Noble of Fringe.
Call of Duty 4 has Staff Sergeant Griggs, who was voiced by, named, and modeled after Infinity Ward's lead animator at the time, Mark Grigsby.
Continued in Call of Duty: Black Ops: excluding the "named after" part, it's the same as above for Alex Mason (Sam Worthington), Jason Hudson (Ed Harris), and Joseph Bowman (Ice Cube).
Three central characters in the 2012 Syndicate reboot look very much like their voice actors Michael Wincott, Rosario Dawson and Brian Cox.
Flak in Fallout 3 appears to be modeled after voice actor Gus Travers. Likewise, James is modeled after Liam Neeson.
In Fallout: New Vegas, Bruce Isaac looks like Gregory Alan Williams, and Sunny Smiles resembles Katherine Pawlak(when she's not wearing bangs). Likewise for Benny(Matthew Perry), Mr. House(Rene Auberjonois), The King(James Horan), Nero(Alex Mendoza), Julie Farkas(Laura Bailey), Arcade Gannon(Zachary Levi), Colonel Moore(Kirsten Potter), President Kimball(Monte Markham), Chief Hanlon(Kris Kristofferson), Ambassador Crocker(Emerson Brooks), Cass(Rachel Roswell), Caesar (John Doman), Vulpes Inculta(Jason Spisak), Aurelius of Phoenix(Yuri Lowenthal), Follows Chalk(Christian Lanz), Waking Cloud(Misi Lecube), Trudy(Lora Cain), Doc Mitchell(Michael Hogan), Stella(Eliza Schneider), Father Elijah(Richard Herd), Samuel Cooke(Avery K. Waddell), and the Forecaster(Anthony Crehan), as seen here.
The default male and female Courier faces are modeled after Yuri Lowenthal and Laura Bailey, respectively.
While Robert Guillaume did provide the voice for Eli Vance, the character model is not based on him (though there are some similarities). As the book Half-Life 2: Raising the Bar states: (Page 123, regarding model references) "Eli was holding a sign and looking for work on the street."
Dr. Judith Mossman, on the other hand, does look very like Michelle Forbes.
Basically the entire cast in Devil May Cry 3 did both the motion capture for their characters as well as being their voice actors.
Vaas from Far Cry 3 is modeled after his voice actor Michael Mando, who also plays him in live-action promo clips.
Star Trek Online has appearances by (usually aged-up) versions of several characters from the live-action Star Trek series, with the original Trek actors voicing the characters. So far we have Denise Crosby playing Empress Sela and a once-again-time-shifted Natasha Yar, Michael Dorn playing Ambassador Worf, son of Mogh, and as of "A Step Between Stars", Rear Admiral Tuvok played by Tim Russ. Also, Captain Va'Kel Shon, CO of the Enterprise-F, is the spitting image of his voice actor Dave Rivas, except Andorian and clean-shaven instead of human with a goatee.
Need For Speed: The Run features accurate CGI representations of Sean Faris and Christina Hendricks, the latter even depicted accurately with regards to her, um, proportions.
In Sunstone Lisa's characters in her online erotic BDSM writings are clearly based on her and Ally. This causes problems when Lisa decides the logical way to introduce her new friend to the ideas of the scene is to link her to her bibliography. Love Triangle tropes ensue. It gets even worse when Lisa explicitly writes Anne into the story.
The people of Extra Credits are all ink-suit actors with their own on-screen characters. Mike Rugetta of PBS Idea Channel makes a cameo in one of their episodes to mention a video on his channel talking about a related topic.
This might be an inversion, but take a look at Dan Castellaneta◊ sometime. Even though he is much thinner than Homer, there's no denying the similarity in hairstyle (or lack thereof).
The difference is more notable when Dan Castellaneta actually appeared as himself in a Simpsons episode. Naturally, Homer mocks him.
Spinal Tap have also been on the show in Ink Suit Actors, just as other bands have, except Spinal Tap are played by actors including Harry Shearer whose cartoon face gets so dominated by the facial hair and wig that he ends up looking nothing like himself.
The woman who goes on a date with Moe in the "Love-Matic Grampa" segment of the "Spinoff Showcase" episode looks a lot like Tress MacNeille, who voiced her. They mention it in the DVD commentary, so it was probably intentional.
Topher Grace voiced Donny, the new kid hired by Skinner to infiltrate Bart's gang, in "The Debarted."
In "Smart and Smarter", Simon Cowell played a character so like himself it was odd to hear him called "Henry". He even lampshades it himself during the credits.
Homer's friends John and Ray Magini were just as obvious.
Springfield's sanitation commissioner, Ray Patterson, closely resembles Steve Martin, his voice actor for his only appearance, "Trash of the Titans."
Marge's convict friend Dwight bears a close resemblance to Steve Buscemi, who's a good sport about the other characters calling him "needy and bug-eyed."
This doubles as a case of Celebrity Paradox, as Buscemi had previously appeared on the show as himself.
Larry Burns is Rodney Dangerfield.
The Flintstones often had stars with slightly-altered names ("Ann Margarock", et al), though this shades over into Simpson-like Special Guest territory since the characters were so blatantly their actors.
Fred Flintstone was drawn to closely resemble original voice actor Alan Reed. This becomes obvious when one compares Reed's cameo appearance in Breakfast at Tiffany's, which was released the same year The Flintstones debuted on TV.
Parodied in American Dad!: Avery Bullock, Stan's egocentric and somewhat incompetent boss, is so similar to acclaimed William Shakespeare/Star Trek actor Patrick Stewart that it becomes a joke to see an obviously British individual in charge of an American national security agency. This was made even more obvious in an episode where the character attracted a short-lived (literally — he later kills her when she approaches him from behind and his combat instincts kick in) girlfriend with his "sexy accent". Seth MacFarlane has claimed that one of the challenges of scripting the character is getting Patrick Stewart to act completely out of type.
This is even more obvious when Family Guy had a cutaway to a scene on the Enterprise, in which Captain Picard looked and sounded exactly like Bullock.
A straighter American Dad! example: This is a video of Scott Grimes singing on a public-access talent show in 1986, at around age 14. Put a pair of glasses on him, and he practically is a live-action Steve Smith.
The Warden of Superjail looks suspiciously like his voice actor, David Wain. All he's really missing is the suit/hat combo and the yellow tint on his glasses.
Oddly, when he does get medium blended into live-action (at the end of "Dream Machine"), he's instead portrayed by the lead singer of the band Les Savy Fav.
In an earlier episode of Wainy Days, David Wain first ends up in prison, then appears dressed very similarly like the Warden. Draw your own conclusions.
In the second season episode "Ghosts", John Waters voices some Aztec shaman that looks like him.
Many characters (usually the narrators and main characters) in the mostly stop-motion Rankin/Bass holiday specials of the '60s and '70s were modeled after their voice actors.
Burl Ives as Sam the Snowman, in Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, is probably the definitive example, so much so that Ives is now more famous for that role than for his folksinging or his Oscar-winning turn in The Big Country, even though he only provides a voice here. Look at a picture of the guy, and then at the snowman, and you'll see why people think of the snowman as being him rather than simply being played by him.
In fact, all the major characters resembled their voice actors; the hope was that the webisode would get enough support to start up the TV show again with that cast, so making the characters look like the actors would make it possible to use the webisode as part of continuity for the new series. As it turns out, that plan fell over, as the renewal of the show had already been announced before it aired.
Similarly in the webcast "Death Comes To Time". Apart from the Seventh Doctor and Ace (who obviously look like they did in the series), the Minister of Chance (voiced by Stephen Fry) looks like this◊.
In the webcast version of "Shada", all of the humanoid guest characters look like the actors who voiced them in the webcast rather than the actors who appeared in the unfinished live-action version.
Stripperella looks like her voice actress Pamela Anderson. Given that a major part of this series is about a well-endowed stripper turned crime-fighting Action Girl...
In South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut most of the celebrity cameos are playing people, be it other celebrities, established South Park characters or new characters, who look nothing like themselves. The exception is George Clooney, who voices Dr. Gouache, who bears a resemblance to Clooney. This may be because Dr. Gouache is a parody of Clooney's character Dr. Ross on ER.
The creators of Kim Possible admitted that they created the character of "Motor Ed" to look and act like John DiMaggio because they thought his off-mike personality had great comedy potential.
And Ricardo Montalban gets his usual treatment as Senor Senior Sr.
Adam West was clearly the visual model for the Adam West expy Timothy North, aka The Fearless Ferret. The whole ep was an Affectionate Parody of the '60s TV Batman, with West playing a delusional actor who thought he was the superhero he played and roped Ron into taking on the role as well.
Inverted with hetero (they maintain) life/business partners Pete White and Billy Quizboy look more than a little like creators Doc Hammer and Chris McCulloch (AKA Jackson Publick), with added physical deformities. An inverted example because each character is voiced by the OTHER voice actor.
As the series itself wore on the characters started to resemble their voice actors more and more, it doesn't hurt that some of them already looked similar to those playing them, special mention goes to Richard Moll and Harvey Dent/Two-Face, Paul Williams as The Penguin, and Ron Perlman as Matt Hagan/Clayface.
Harley Quinn, the Joker's lovable henchwoman, was based on her voice-actress, Arleen Sorkin. The producers are apparently amazed that she still talks to them.
A debatable case: is Amanda Waller in the DCAU modeled on actress C.C.H. Pounder, or is it just that to get the right voice they needed an actress the same physical type as the character?
In the Gargoyles episode "The Mirror", the gargoyles' human forms were made to resemble their voice actors according to Greg Weisman.
Gargoyles also based Elisa Maza's appearance on voice actress Salli Richardson. Yes, there is a real woman who looks and sounds exactly like Elisa Maza. Recursive Perverse Sexual Lust?
David Xanatos looks very similar to his voice actor Jonathan Frakes, though Word of God says this is a coincidence, as Xanatos was designed before Frakes was cast..
Phineas and Ferb has Coltrane, who debuts without a voice in "The Best Lazy Day" as the guitarist in Jeremy's band and an apparent love interest to Stacy. Later, shortly after Corbin Bleu became his voice actor, Coltrane reappeared with a new look that gave him better resemblance to Corbin.
In addition, the manager of the Hawaiian hotel is modeled after Phill Lewis, who voices him. (Also an Actor Allusion, since the character is basically Mr Moseby.)
In the episode "Live and Let Drive", The guys from the UK version of Top Gear make an appearance They even matched a typical wardrobe for the guys. Hammond is wearing a dark suit jacket over a white button up shirt, Clarkson has tan suit jacket and white shirt, and James May is wearing a loud Hawaiian shirt. An image can be seen here◊
Looney Tunes' Elmer Fudd briefly went through this in the early 1940s when the animators thought that maybe the girth of his voice actor, Arthur Q. Bryan, added to the humor of his speech impediment.
June Foray provided the voice of Witch Hazel and in "Broomstick Bunny" she was used as the model for Hazel's beautified form at the end.
The 1959 short "The Mouse That Jack Built" had the cast of The Jack Benny Program playing animated mouse versions of themselves.
Four on The Fairly Oddparents: Teen pop idol Chip Skylark is *NSYNC member Chris Kirkpatrick in animated form. Norm the Genie is modeled after, named after, and voiced by former Saturday Night Live member Norm MacDonald. Superhero "The Crimson Chin" is modeled after and voiced by Jay Leno, whose most prominent feature is his chin. Finally, Dr. Rip Studwell looks like Butch Hartman, the series creator who also does his voice.
Technically five, counting the Head Pixie, played the aforementioned Ben Stein (also a partial subversion, since he plays all the pixies).
Possibly Ricky Tomlinson as Santa in Robbie the Reindeer. Or it could just be that an overweight guy with a beard is inevitably going to look a bit like Ricky Tomlinson...
In the Justice League episode "Flash and Substance," Mark Hamill voices the Trickster, a Flash villain modeled on the actor who played him in the 1990s live-action series — Mark Hamill. The Trickster being an expy of sorts for the Joker. Who in the wider DC Animated Universe is played by (you guessed it) Mark Hamill.
Just to tie it all together, his live-action performance as the Trickster played a big part in him getting the later role.
Ricardio on Adventure Time is a rather creepy-looking example. Just takes George Takei's face with extreme detail and put it onto a cartoon heart.
King of the Hill's numerous celebrity guest stars occasionally played themselves, but whether or not they did, their characters looked like them the majority of the time.
John Redcorn was also reportedly modeled on Victor Aaron, his original voice actor.
Octavio is essentially an animated clone of his voice actor, Danny Trejo.
In Hey Arnold!, the gang's teacher, Mr. Simmons, is a dead ringer for his voice actor, Dan Butler. This is especially noticeable because the show has an extremely idiosyncratic character design, to say the least.
Many of the Recess cast happen to look like the characters they played. They commented on this on a documentary they did for the Disney Channel.
According to the Audio Commentary, Eunice from the Futurama episode "Proposition Infinity" is modelled after the episode's director Crystal Chesney-Thompson. The brief on the character apparently was that she should look "girly, but nerdy." Animator's response? "Oh, she should look like Crystal then!"
In an episode of The Batman, Allison Mack voice acts for a character that looks exactly like her. Doubles as Actor Allusion because the character's name is Clea
Now-cancelled Arnold Schwarzenegger project The Governator blends this with No Celebrities Were Harmed, as the main character is a fictionalized version of his voice actor (basically Arnold if he decided he wanted to be Bruce Wayne)—but animated versions of Schwarzenegger's wife and children, who aren't in the acting business, will also be featured. Alas, the project was shelved due to Arnold's troubles in his personal life.
The New Scooby-Doo Movies used a number of celebrities in cartoon form, most notably Don Knotts (although Don Adams and Sonny and Cher aren't the most likely people to be seen on screen with Mystery Inc. either). Season two of Hanna-Barbera's Wait Till Your Father Gets Home had guest stars in cartoon form as well.
Warner Bros. cartoons did this a lot, probably reaching its zenith in Tex Avery's 1941 short "Hollywood Steps Out."
Zhao from Avatar: The Last Airbender looks quite a bit like his voice actor, Jason Isaacs. Co-creator Micheal Dante DiMartino confirmed in an interview that when creating Zhao, he was inspired by Isaacs performance as a villain in The Patriot. He asked the casting director to get "someone like Jason Isaacs" for the role, and she ended up getting Isaacs himself instead.
Todd Haberkorn looks coincidentally similar to Ling Yao, who he plays in the english dub of Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood. Actually, he probably noticed, since he later cosplayed as Ling at Anime Central 2010.
Carl Fredericksen from Up is based on both Spencer Tracy and Walter Matthau, but still manages to look like a caricature of Ed Asner. Not that Asner wasn't put into Carl: Pixar's crew declared that Lou Grant was an influence in the character, and Carl's lines were tailored for te actor.
Daniel Logan played a young Boba Fett in Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones. He has since grown up to a young adult with an uncanny resemblance to Temuera Morrison, who played Jango Fett, Boba Fett's father and progenitor, in Clones.
Roxas and Ventus have an uncanny resemblance to Jesse McCartney, their voice actor in the English dub of the Kingdom Hearts series.
Solid Snake actually looks kind of like his English voice actor, David Hayter. Heck, they even have the same first name.
Speaking of Metal Gear, Paul Eiding bears a good resemblance to his character, Colonel Campbell.
In Metroid: Other M, Samus's face bears a resemblance to Jessica Martin, her American voice actress. She looks even more like Samus with her hair dyed blonde.
Considering Jessica wasn't famous until she played Samus, and most of the voice acting wasn't even done to finished cutscenes, this might be an inversion of the trope!
Rubi Malone bears quite the resemblance to her voice actor, Eliza Dushku. Funnily enough, one of the characters she played, Faith, refers to wet works and assassinations in the comic continuity, which is basically Rubi's gig.
Meanwhile, in Final Fantasy XIII, both Troy Baker and Ali Hillis look quite similar to their characters Snow & Lightning. Hillis herself even said when she first met Baker during the voice recording of the game, her immediate thought was "Is this guy Snow?"
David Xanatos, the main villain in Disney's Gargoyles, clearly resembles his voice actor, Jonathan Frakes. According to the official FAQ, however, the character's appearance was settled before Frakes was cast.
Actually, Jonathan Frakes is a character played by meat suit actor David Xanatos.
It's unclear whether it was intentional, but Grey DeLisle looks a lot like Azula in Avatar: The Last Airbender, what with the soft black hair and signature red lips. The only difference is that Azula is from the Fire Nation, who are modeled after East Asians. (Oh, and Azula is a teenager.)
The main six kids in Recess eerily resembled their voice actors (though it was coincidental). Ashley Johnson (Gretchen) lampshaded this in the DVD bonus features to Recess: School's Out. For example, Gus was a dead ringer for his voice actor, Courtland Mead, with the sole exception that the latter didn't wear glasses. T.J. was this even moreso for his second voice actor, Andrew Lawrence.
A large number of guest stars during later seasons of Garfield and Friends, including but not limited to Rip Taylor, Ray Jay Johnson, and Eddie Lawrence doing his "Old Philosopher" routine in cat form. Most notable was adding Aloysius, a pastiche of voicing comedian Kevin Meaney (right down to his catchphrase, "That's not right!"), as a recurring character on U.S. Acres.
Ron Perlman, who voiced Slade/Deathstroke in Teen Titans, looks very similar to Deathstroke's alter-ego in the comics.