L.A.'s Top Voice-Over Talents Pay the Way for Ted Williams

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Arguably, no one has had a better start to 2011 than Ted Williams and on Monday his year got even better. The voice of Entertainment Tonight, Randy Thomas, along with other top voice-over talents such as Beau Weaver and Nita Whitaker, gathered their resources to pay Ted's union initiation fees for SAG (Screen Actors Guild) and AFTRA (American Federation of Television and Radio Artists). Ted was given the news of his free membership at the Don LaFontaine Voice-Over Lab in Los Angeles. With guild membership Ted is able to work high-profile voice-over jobs, be eligible for health benefits and has access to expert training from the best in the world. "There's no charge for a Screen Actors Guild or AFTRA actor to walk in these doors and learn about the craft of voice over," said Randy Thomas. Don LaFontaine's Voice-Over Lab was established in memory of the legendary vocal actor who voiced thousands of film trailers, setting the standard for the industry. Don died on September 1, 2008. "You've inspired the nation that second chances happen -- that good things happen to good people," said Don's widow, Nita Whitaker. Ted was formerly homeless, receiving media attention when a video showcasing his "golden voice" went viral on YouTube -- getting over 11 million hits in just a few days.

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  • I am humbled to be part of this community. From the moment I saw Mr. Williams on that video I wanted to come up with some way to help him find his way back into the profession for which he is so naturally and uniquely suited. I should have known that our VU community would open our arms and embrace him as our prodigal colleague. Welcome home, Ted.

  • Guys, I gotta tell you. I don't know where this is all going, but I do know that Ted Williams "wants" to lead a productive and successful life. He's a very sweet person...he's caring and he's extremely appreciative of all that has come his way. Does he have demons?...yes, I think he does. Is it a day to day constant effort to stay sober and keep his life on track? Yes, I sincerely believe that. I've talked to him over and over again and I find him to be a man who wants to help other people and help himself as well. I hope he can do it. I know I support his effort, as does my good friend, Randy Thomas. He's got the best of the best helping him. Dr. Phil is his personal confidant and therapist. I personally think that Ted should do a solid 30 days in the Betty Ford Clinic or another totally immersible program to help him get away from the hype and just work on keeping his sobriety as his most important goal. All of these offers will still be there when he comes out. I've told this to his friend and confidant, Al Battle and I hope he does that. He's basically a good man with the good fortune of having a beautiful god given voice.
  • So proud of this community. Not only the greatest voices, but also the greatest hearts. Ted is a natural talent and a grate guy that can't thank enough to each individual who shows support and understating, but most of all; who believe in him. That's all he needed and wanted.
  • Absolutely phenomenal, the whole story! Congratulations Ted!
  • His humility and heartfelt gratitude brought tears to my eyes. He may need a little practice to get back up to speed, but I sincerely hope that he does well and uses this second chance to get his life right this time. I wish him all the best.
  • Nice!  Makes me proud that I am a part of the voice over community of great caring people!  Go Ted!
  • Thomas Bromhead,

    It's best you say nothing at all if you have nothing positive to say. This is not AOL, Yahoo, TMZ or Facebook. If you have a problem with one man's success, maybe you need to clear your mirror and take a deeper look at yourself.
    It's easy to banish you, but it's important that people see that personal attacks will not be tolerated.
  • Good on you Nina, Randy and Beau!...but SAG should take a good look at itself.

    I suppose they need some good publicity after the recent fraud there.

    Hopefully by the time Ted is doing some promos we will only have one union.

    Bring on the merger.....so the next homeless guy doing voiceovers only has to join one union.

     

     

  • Just wonderful! My favorite part is how excited Joe, Randy, Beau, Stew, Nita et al were to welcome Ted to the Union Club House!!  That was special.
  • Totally COOOOL!!!
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