Nancy Cartwright

Voiceover / Actress


The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation Presents

02:26

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About
About this interview

In her nearly two-and-a-half-hour Archive interview, Nancy Cartwright describes how she got her start as a voiceover artist. Active in speech club in high school, she discovered her talent with voices and pursued Communications in college, first at Ohio University, then at UCLA, to be closer to the industry. She recalls training with acclaimed voiceover artist Daws Butler, her first professional job on Richie Rich, and her on-camera work as a guest actor on Cheers and as the lead in the television movie, Marian Rose White. Cartwright then details her work on The Simpsons, originally a series of sketches on The Tracey Ullman Show. She recalls going in to audition for the part of "Lisa Simpson" and walking out with the role of "Bart Simpson." Cartwright outlines the recording schedule of the show, other characters she voices, expanding the show to a half-hour program, her Emmy win for Outstanding Voiceover Actor, and her favorite episodes. She also comments on other shows to which she's contributed (Rugrats, Kim Possible) and speaks of her extensive charity work. Jenni Matz conducted the interview on March 17, 2011 in Northridge, CA.

"I just knew that there was something unusual about the quality of my voice, and I also really loved to make people laugh. And that was the main thing. It wasn't so much acting as it was saying something that took somebody from just having a hum-ho day to kind of brightening them up a little bit. I liked creating effects that would make people happy." 

Interviewee(s)
Highlights
Nancy Cartwright on criticism that "Bart Simpson" is not a good role model for kids
Nancy Cartwright on the cultural impact of The Simpsons
Nancy Cartwright on her first professional voice acting job in L.A., as "Gloria" in Richie Rich
Nancy Cartwright on the legacy of The Simpsons
Nancy Cartwright on learning she had a talent for voices
Full Interview

Chapter 1

On her childhood and early influences; on learning she had a talent for voices while on the speech team in high school; on attending Ohio University and getting her start in radio at WING in Dayton; on mentor Daws Butler and moving to LA
On her first professional voice acting job in L.A.; on working for Hanna-Barbera; on collecting animation cells of characters she's voiced; on voicing "Gloria" on the cartoon Richie Rich; on getting an on-camera part for the pilot for In Trouble; on her on-camera role in Marian Rose White
On her guest appearance on Cheers; on several of her roles in features; on loop groups; on auditioning for The Simpsons

Chapter 2

On auditioning for The Simpsons, originally part of the Tracey Ullman Show; on expanding The Simpsons to a half hour program; on James L. Brooks and Sam Simon coming on board; on the immediate popularity of the show; on her anonymity as a voiceover artist
On the initial controversy over The Simpsons and "Bart's" catchphrases; on ad-libbing; on people's reactions to finding out that she voices "Bart Simpson"; on criticism that "Bart Simpson" is not a good role model for kids
On what makes "Bart Simpson" so lovable; on similarities between her and "Bart"; on voice training and table reads; on the other characters she voices on The Simpsons - "Ralph", "Kearney", "Nelson", "Todd Flanders", "Database"; on her favorite characters; on the physicality of voiceover acting
On the "David and Goliath"episode of The Simpsons; on the musical episodes; on working with Michael Jackson and other guest stars; on how the show is recorded

Chapter 3

On winning an Emmy in 1992 for Outstanding Voiceover artist; on the cultural impact of The Simpsons; on the best part of being on The Simpsons; on her co-stars; on how The Simpsons has influenced TV comedies; on the legacy of The Simpsons
On other shows on which she's worked; on her charity work; on advice to someone aspiring to be a voiceover actor; on how she'd like to be remembered
Shows

Cheers

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Nancy Cartwright on her guest appearance on Cheers

Emmy Awards, The (Primetime and Daytime)

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Nancy Cartwright on winning an Emmy in 1992 for Outstanding Voiceover artist

Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In

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Nancy Cartwright on imitating Ruth Buzzi and Arte Johnson on Laugh-In

Rugrats

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Nancy Cartwright on working on Rugrats

Simpsons, The

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Nancy Cartwright on coming in to audition for "Lisa Simpson" of The Simpsons, then part of The Tracey Ullman Show, and leaving with the role of "Bart Simpson"
Nancy Cartwright on auditioning for The Simpsons, originally part of the Tracey Ullman Show; on working on the show
Nancy Cartwright on the process of recording the show
Nancy Cartwright on winning Emmys for, castmates of, and the legacy of The Simpsons

Tracey Ullman Show, The

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Nancy Cartwright on coming in to audition for "Lisa Simpson" of The Simpsons, then part of The Tracey Ullman Show, and leaving with the role of "Bart Simpson"
Nancy Cartwright on auditioning for The Simpsons, originally part of the Tracey Ullman Show
Topics

Censorship / Standards & Practices

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Nancy Cartwright on Sam Simon and James L. Brooks not allowing the network to interfere with scripts

Characters & Catchphrases

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Nancy Cartwright on "Bart Simpson"
Nancy Cartwright on the character of  "Bart Simpson" during the show's initial sketches
Nancy Cartwright on "Bart Simpson's" catchphrases
Nancy Cartwright on what makes "Bart Simpson" so lovable

Emmy Awards

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Nancy Cartwright on winning an Emmy in 1992 for Outstanding Voiceover artist

Fame and Celebrity

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Nancy Cartwright on being anonymous as a voiceover artist and not enjoying some of the perks of celebrity
Professions

Voiceover

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Nancy Cartwright on the differences between on-camera and off-camera voices
Nancy Cartwright on coming in to audition for "Lisa Simpson" of The Simpsons, then part of The Tracey Ullman Show, and leaving with the role of "Bart Simpson"
Genres

Animation

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Nancy Cartwright on coming in to audition for "Lisa Simpson" of The Simpsons, then part of The Tracey Ullman Show, and leaving with the role of "Bart Simpson"
Nancy Cartwright on The Simpsons
Nancy Cartwright on winning Emmys for, castmates of, and the legacy of The Simpsons
People

Hank Azaria

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Nancy Cartwright on Hank Azaria joining the cast of The Simpsons
Nancy Cartwright on co-star Hank Azaria

Mel Blanc

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Nancy Cartwright on associating Warner Brothers with one of her idols, Mel Blanc, and hoping to get the chance to meet him

James L. Brooks

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Nancy Cartwright on Sam Simon and James L. Brooks' involvement with The Simpsons
Nancy Cartwright on Sam Simon and James L. Brooks not allowing the network to interfere with scripts

Daws Butler

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Nancy Cartwright on mentor Daws Butler, the voice of Roadrunner, Captain Crunch and many others

Ruth Buzzi

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Nancy Cartwright on imitating Ruth Buzzi and Arte Johnson on Laugh-In

Dan Castellaneta

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Nancy Cartwright on meeting fellow Simpsons castmates Dan Castellaneta and Julie Kavner for the first time
Nancy Cartwright on co-star Dan Castellaneta, "Homer Simpson"

Kelsey Grammer

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Nancy Cartwright on working with guest star Kelsey Grammer

Matt Groening

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Nancy Cartwright on coming in to audition for "Lisa Simpson" of The Simpsons, then part of The Tracey Ullman Show, and leaving with the role of "Bart Simpson"
Nancy Cartwright on auditioning for Matt Groening for The Simpsons, originally part of the Tracey Ullman Show

Phil Hartman

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Nancy Cartwright on working with guest star Phil Hartman

Michael Jackson

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Nancy Cartwright on working with Michael Jackson for "Lisa, it's your birthday..." on "The Bartman" episode of The Simpsons

Arte Johnson

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Nancy Cartwright on imitating Ruth Buzzi and Arte Johnson on Laugh-In

Julie Kavner

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Nancy Cartwright on meeting fellow Simpsons castmates Dan Castellaneta and Julie Kavner for the first time
Nancy Cartwright on working with Yeardley Smith, "Lisa Simpson" and Julie Kavner, "Marge Simpson"
Nancy Cartwright on co-star Julie Kavner, "Marge Simpson"

Joe Mantegna

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Nancy Cartwright on working with guest star Joe Mantegna

Harry Shearer

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Nancy Cartwright on co-star Harry Shearer

Sam Simon

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Nancy Cartwright on Sam Simon and James L. Brooks' involvement with The Simpsons

Yeardley Smith

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Nancy Cartwright on working with Yeardley Smith, "Lisa Simpson" and Julie Kavner, "Marge Simpson"
Nancy Cartwright on co-star Yeardley Smith, "Lisa Simpson"

Tracey Ullman

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Nancy Cartwright on Tracey Ullman's response to and involvement with The Simpsons, originally part of the Tracey Ullman Show

Jonathan Winters

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Nancy Cartwright on getting her start in radio at WING, where Jonathan Winters previously worked

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