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In A World... Where Don LaFontaine Has Passed Away...

Hey guys. Quint here with my thoughts on Don LaFontaine, who died Monday afternoon and the world of movie trailers will never be the same again. As someone who loves trailers, has a collection of them in 16mm and 35mm and still enjoys the previews as much as I did back when I was a kid this is a very sad day for me. Don was famous as being “The Voice,” the same man you hear in damn near every trailer and ad. He recorded voice-overs for well over 5000 trailers in his life. I can’t remember the first time I heard Don LaFontaine’s voice… It could be the FRIDAY THE 13TH trailer, which is still one of my favorite pieces from him. He totally had the voice horror.
But he did it all. Comedies, Sci-Fi, Adventure, Horror, Drama… In fact, he became so recognizable that he started spoofing himself and the oft-repeated trailer opening, “In a world…” became kind of a national in-joke with the movie geek crowd. You might remember his GEICO commercial, which I particularly enjoyed. Check it out if you haven’t seen it:
He started on DR. STRANGELOVE, but not as a voice. He was a producer, editor and eventually fell into voice-over work, which became his profession for the last 40 years. The man was a machine, said to have done around an average of 60 promotions a week, sometimes as many as 35 in a single day. His voice will always signify a period of cinema history, his baritone always remembered by people of my immediate generation as being a warm-up for the main feature. I will include a sampling of Mr. LaFontaine’s work below to check at your leisure. I don’t think it’s simple nostalgia, but I can tell you that watching a lot of these trailers really get me itching to pop in these films. Mr. LaFontaine is a big part of that. As always, my thoughts are with Mr. LaFontaine’s friends, family and fans.
Moriarty is below with his original posting. -Quint

Hey, everyone. “Moriarty” here. Don LaFontaine is the trailer voice guy. He was an ubiquitous voice over talent whose death brings an era concretely to an end. I know little about the man personally beyond the fact that he was 68 when he died this weekend of complications from pneumothorax. He has his own website, and the intro alone seems to demonstrate that he was not only well aware of what impact he'd had on pop culture, but he sort of relished it. Our sympathies go out to his friends and family, and I don't think it's an exaggeration to say that his passing will leave a huge impact on the industry as a whole. Not many people make as big a mark without their personal story overshadowing things, and I doubt there will ever be another Don LaFontaine.

Drew McWeeny, Los Angeles

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