The story goes that the producers of Batman: The Animated Series were taking hundreds of auditions for the title role and just hadn’t found anyone with that specific spark. Then the moment Kevin Conroy walked in and started reading his lines, the entire room lit up, the people in the booth began freaking out, and they instantly knew he was the one.
The story from Conroy’s end reads a bit differently, and was published just last June in the DC Pride anthology. It is well worth a read, especially now, and though we’re not sure if we can post it here in its entirety (probably not), someone else did, so we’ll just drop this link here. Hopefully Twitter won’t go down permanently before you can read this. It’s powerful stuff.
Finding Batman by @RealKevinConroy.
— Watchtower Database (@dcauwatchtower) September 17, 2022
UPDATE: DC themselves has made it free to read through this link; good for them.
For many Conroy’s voice is the one they hear in their heads when they read Batman comics. Many others have tried, but Conroy just NAILED the spirit of the character in a way no one else on Earth could. Though Batman: The Animated Series would eventually end, Conroy would voice Batman many, many more times in other projects, including the Arkham video games and over 15 DC Animated Movies.
“Kevin was perfection,” says Mark Hamill, another BTAS icon (The Joker) and Conroy’s friend. “He was one of my favorite people on the planet, and I loved him like a brother. He truly cared for the people around him — his decency shone through everything he did. Every time I saw him or spoke with him, my spirits were elevated.”
As celebrated as Conroy’s Batman was, it’s absurd he was only asked to play the role in real life ONCE. He portrayed an elderly, alternate dimension Bruce Wayne in The CW’s adaption of Crisis On Infinite Earths in 2019. The appearance fueled speculation that there would be a live-action Batman Beyond show with Conroy playing Wayne. It’s a pity and a waste WB never even considered it.
Kevin Conroy died of cancer at age 66, survived by his siblings and husband. What he left, however, will live on forever.