Thursday, August 5, 2010

unKNOWN Actors: Sterling Holloway

Continuing in our pursuit of Disney voice actors who you know, but may not know you know….if that makes sense….It is time to look at our next Disney Star: Sterling Holloway

Sterling was born on January 4, 1905 in Cedartown, Georgia and died November 22, 1992.  His main feature is a high pitched voice, and it was this voice that made him a staple in Disney history!

He is most known for voicing the “chubby little cubby all stuffed with fluff.” That’s right! Sterling is the original voice for Winnie the Pooh. From Pooh Bear’s first appearance in 1966 with Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree until 1977 in The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh, Sterling covered the voice for this lovable character.  Though this is his most well known part, this was neither his first nor his only!

Sterling Holloway’s career with Disney started long before the “willy nilly silly old bear” (can you tell that I really like Winnie the Pooh?).  Like our last featured actress, Verna Felton, Sterling got his start in 1941’s Dumbo, providing the voice for Mr. Stork.

The following year, he provides the voice for Adult Flower in Bambi.

The years following Bambi introduced him into his second most popular role in film as the Narrator.  He provided the narrator voice for such movies as 1944’s The Three Caballeros, 1946’s Make Music Mine, 1947’s Mickey and the Beanstalk and 1960’s Goliath II.  He was also heard as the narrator for The Wonderful World of Color on television in 1957 and as the Sleeping Beauty Narrator for the 1978 Christmas in Walt Disney World.

In 1950, Sterling was once again voicing characters for Disney full length animated features, becoming the sly and devious Cheshire Cat in Alice in Wonderland.

In The Jungle Book in 1967, he voiced Kaa, the hypnotist boa constrictor who always wanted to wrap his coils around the man cub, Mowgli.

Sterling’s last Disney movie appearance outside of Winnie the Pooh would be in 1970 as Roquefort, the mouse that had befriended Dutchess and the kittens in The Aristocats.

There were a few Disney shorts that Sterling had a part in, including Peter and the Wolf (1946) as the Narrator, Lambert the Sheepish Lion (1952) as the Narrator and Mr. Stork, and in Ben and Me (1953) as Amos Mouse.

As you can see, Sterling Holloway has been a huge part of the Disney Family. In fact, he was given the honor of being named a Disney Legend in 1991. 

I hope you are enjoying these actor profiles of some Disney classic voice actors.  If there are any actors you would like me to cover or if you have any questions, feel free to email me at

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