Prolific voiceover actor and pioneering early kids TV host Chuck McCann passed away on Sunday, April 8, 2018, in Los Angeles at the age of 83 due to congestive heart failure. While he began his acting career doing voiceover work for radio at age 6, Mr. McCann’s big break came in the mid-1950’s when he had to step in as the host of The Sandy Becker Show for two weeks, only learning of his new assignment the Friday before his Monday debut. Mr. McCann worked perpetually in a variety of capacities across the industry, creating and shaping numerous children’s TV shows throughout the 1950’s and 1960’s; earning critical acclaim in his 1968 film debut The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, starring as a mentally defective deaf mute alongside Alan Arkin in the adaptation of Carson McCullers’ novel; and gained nationwide recognition in a series of ads for Right Guard deodorant that aired throughout the 1970’s and 1980’s.
Mr. McCann’s had a tremendous body of voiceover work for animation, with one of his highest profile roles being Sonny the Cuckoo Bird for Cocoa Puffs breakfast cereal; for decades, his manic cry “I’m cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs!” was instantly recognizable to children who spent any time at all watching commercial television. An exhaustive list of his animation voiceover credits would stretch from his role in the pioneering TV cartoon Cool McCool all the way to the current incarnations of The Powerpuff Girls and The Garfield Show, and all points in between. Highlights include Duckworth and two Beagle Bros in the late 1980’s DuckTales series; Leatherneck in the original G.I. Joe series; Benjamin Grimm/The Thing in the 1994-1995 Fantastic Four animated series; and Moe in Adventure Time.