September 24, 1894
Lancaster, Pennsylvania U.S.
|Died||January 5, 1979
Los Angeles, California U.S.
|Resting place||Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery|
|Occupation||Actor, voice artist, comedian|
|Known for||The voice of Pete|
William "Billy" Bletcher (September 24, 1894 – January 5, 1979) was an American actor, voice actor, and comedian. He is best known for providing the voice of Mickey Mouse's rival, Pete, for the Disney franchise in the 1930s to the 1950s.
Career[change | change source]
Bletcher was born in Lancaster, Pennsylvania on 24 September 1894. At age 19 he was a vaudeville performer. He started his movie career in 1913 at the Vitagraph Studios in Brooklyn, New York. In 1917 he moved to California and became a comedian for Mack Sennett. He later starred in several Hal Roach two reelers.
During his acting career he starred in a number of comedies. Bletcher also acted in Westerns and action movies. He directed two feature movies in the 1920s. Bletcher was the voice of the Lone Ranger in the 1937 movie serial. He was a veteran voice actor from the Disney animated movies The Three Little Pigs (1933) and Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937). Later he did voice-overs for television. His last movie appearance was in 1969.
Personal life[change | change source]
Bletcher was married only once, to actress Arline Roberts. She was a vaudevillian and a Ziegfeld Girl. When they moved to California she worked as a "bathing beauty". She acted in silent comic two-reelers and feature movies but never gained the prominence her husband did. Their daughter's name was Barbara U'ren.
Filmography[change | change source]
- A Sticky Affair (1916)
- One Too Many (1916)
- The Serenade (1916)
- The Battle Royal (1916)
- The Brave Ones (1916)
- Aunt Bill (1916)
- Turn To The Right (1922)
- Cornered (1924)
- The Bar-C Mystery (1926)
- The Terrible People (1928)
- The Texas Ranger (1931)
- Branded Men (1931)
- Bridge Wives (1932)
- The Dentist (1932)
- The Midnight Patrol (1933)
- Bedtime Worries (1933)
- The First Round-Up (1934)
- Punch Drunks (1934)
- Babes in Toyland (1934)
- Service With a Smile (1934)
- The Dognapper (1934) - Pete
- The Lost City (1935)
- Balloon Land (1935)
- I Haven't Got a Hat (1935)
- Divot Diggers (1936)
- Pigs Is Pigs (1937)
- Can This Be Dixie? (1937)
- Egghead Rides Again (1937)
- The Case of the Stuttering Pig (1937)
- Lonesome Ghosts (1937)
- The Lone Ranger (1938) - voice of The Lone Ranger
- Hide and Shriek (1938)
- The Lone Ranger Rides Again (1939) - voice of The Lone Ranger
- The Wizard of Oz (1939) - Mayor/Lollipop Guild (voice) (uncredited)
- The Autograph Hound - Security Guard
- Mr. Mouse Takes a Trip (1940) - Pete
- Dumbo (1941)
- Dog Trouble (1942) - Spike
- Little Gravel Voice (1942) - Wolf (uncredited)
- Who Killed Who? - Police Officer (1943)
- The Bodyguard (1944) - Spike
- Puttin' on the Dog (1944) - Spike (uncredited)
- Tee for Two (1945) - Tom (uncredited)
- Quiet Please! (1945) - Spike
- Bowery Bugs - Steve Brodie (1949)
- Houdini (1953) - Italian Basso (uncredited)
- Smarty Cat (1955) - Tom (uncredited)
- Surf-Bored Cat (1967) - Shark (uncredited)
- Get a Horse! (2013) - Peg-Leg Pete (archival audio)
References[change | change source]
- George A. Katchmer, A Biographical Dictionary of Silent Film Western Actors and Actresses (Jefferson, NC; London: McFarland, 2009), p. 29
- "Billy Bletcher". Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved 7 September 2015.
- "Billy Bletcher". Inyxception Enterprises, Inc. DBA Behind The Voice Actors. Retrieved 6 September 2015.
- "Billy Bletcher". Voice Chasers/Dekiru Productions. Retrieved 6 September 2015.
- "Billy Bletcher Biography". Flixster/Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 6 September 2015.
- Clayton Moore; Frank Thompson, I Was That Masked Man (Dallas, TX: Taylor Pub. Co., 1998), p. xxi
- "Arline Bletcher". Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved 7 September 2015.