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Dubbed voices

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Long before Kenneth Branagh and Patrick Swayze, ghosts were appearing in the movies. Sometimes out of necessity, sometimes out of irrationality, moviemakers have called on ”dubbing actors” to put words into the mouths on- screen. Some examples:

Christopher Lee in Sherlock Holmes and the Deadly Necklace (1962)
This German-made film has a curious history: Lee delivered his lines in English, they were dubbed into German, and then later, for the American release, were redubbed into English — anonymously and laughably.

Arnold Schwarzenegger as Hercules in New York (1970)
Eternities before The Terminator, Arnold appeared (billed as Arnold Strong) in this inane comedy, wherein the Olympian god chariots up Broadway and signs with wrestling promoters. The body is definitely Arnold’s, but whose voice is that?

Mel Gibson in Mad Max (1979)
For its American release, Gibson’s down-under accent was horrendously dubbed over by an anonymous actor. In the slicker sequel, Gibson’s fame guaranteed him the right to use his own voice, Australian accent included.

David Niven in Trail of the Pink Panther (1982) and The Curse of the Pink Panther (1983)
The earlier is a collection of outtakes patched together after star Peter Sellers died, the latter an attempt to go on without him. In both, Niven, who was ill with throat cancer, was dubbed by voicemeister Rich Little.

Andie MacDowell in Greystoke: The Legend of Tarzan, Lord of the Apes (1984)
In MacDowell’s screen debut (long before sex, lies, and videotape), director Hugh Hudson didn’t like her Southern accent. Glenn Close supplied her voice. Inexplicably, Tarzan Christopher Lambert’s barely intelligible French accent remains.

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