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Robin Williams blazed animation trail with Aladdin

Published on Aug 13, 2014 6:19 AM
Robin Williams' character Genie from the movie Aladdin. -- PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM YOUTUBE

WASHINGTON (AFP) - Robin Williams may be best remembered for the legion of fast-talking comedic roles which lit up both television and movies during his glittering show-business career.

Less well-known is the fact that the 63-year-old, who died from an apparent suicide on Monday, almost single-handedly began the trend of stars lending their voices to animated blockbusters when he signed on to Disney's 1992 hit Aladdin. Williams' scene-stealing portrayal of the Genie in the hit children's classic was in many ways a match made in heaven, allowing the funnyman free rein to showcase his dazzling improvisational skills.

The film is widely regarded as the first animated production to build its marketing on the strength of having a major movie star providing one of its voices, something which has become the norm today.

Since Williams' trailblazing performance more than two decades ago, Hollywood's elite have flocked to animated movies.

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