Billy West

Billy West


4/16/1950, Detroit, Michigan, USA

Birth Name

William Richard West


out of 10
User Rating
203 votes



Billy West was born in 1951 in Detroit, Michigan. Best known for his work on Ren & Stimpy, West has a career in radio and television that began in the 1980's when he did comedic impersonations on Boston's WNBC radio network. By the mid-90s, he had moved to…more


Trivia and Quotes

  • Trivia

    • Billy west said in an interview that his favorite voice acting was in futurama.

    • He is close friends with writers, David X. Cohen and Donick Cary.

    • Billy worked on The Howard Stern Show for many years.

    • Billy is very tall.

    • Billy is prominent on the Futurama DVD audio commentary tracks.

    • West provided the voice of Stimpy in Nickelodeon's The Ren and Stimpy Show from 1991 until 1996, and he provided the voice of Ren from 1993-1996.

    • Billy is a Jewish man.

    • Billy is a fan of the old radio comedian, Hammy Herchel.

    • Billy has said that he would like to have a guest spot on The Simpsons, if he was asked.

    • Billy hosted the 2001 Annie Awards.

    • Billy has voiced characters in the web cartoon, Zombie College.

    • Billy believes voice-over actors are no longer prominent in feature-films and now celebrities, like pop-stars and live-action film actors, have now taken over the industry.

    • Billy believes Futurama was mostly cancelled because of where FOX put it on their schedule.

    • He has reddish-brown hair.

    • Billy and The Grief Counselors first CD is called: "Me Pod."

    • He provided voice talent for Lehtinan/Lord Skarmaen/Higgold in the video game, Amn, in 2000.

    • Billy played Emilio Baza and Vampire 1 in the 1999 video games, Gabriel Knight: Blood of the Sacred and Gabriel Knight: Blood of the Damned.

    • He is close friends with fellow Futurama voice acting veteran, John DiMaggio.

    • In 1978, he had a brief attempt at being a stand-up comedian.

    • He learned to play trumpet in Detroit and learned guitar growing up in Boston and started to perform with different bands for over 17 years.

    • He is a talented beat-boxer.

    • Billy has pointed out, often times in an episode of Futurama, he is talking to himself, but in the voices of different characters.

    • Billy admires the work of Tress MacNeille.

    • Phil Hartman was origionally supposed to play the part of Zapp Brannigan on Futurama, but after he was murdered, Billy assumed the role.

    • When going in to audition for Futurama, Billy origonally planned to audition for just about every character.

    • On February 19 and 20, 2007, The Howard Stern Show ran a special two-part retrospective of West's work with the show. It marked his first work with the show since leaving after his last show on November 1, 1995.

    • Billy reprised his role as Fry for the 2003 video game version of Futurama.

    • Billy would always provide Ren's evil laugh on The Ren and Stimpy Show, even when John Kricfalusi was still voicing him.

    • Billy West does the voice of Red in the M&M commercials.

    • Billy has known the members of the band Aerosmith since 1973.

    • Billy was a host on Boston Radio WBCN FM in 1988.

    • Billy has featured in over 15 projects with fellow Futurama voice over, Tress MacNeille. This totals to over 90 titles (Episodes, shows, films, etc) together.

    • Billy West also played an extra in Sonic the Hedgehog: The Movie.

    • He was also in both featured films, Garfield: the Movie and Garfield: Tail of 2 Kitties.

    • Billy West and Joe Alaskey are the best known voice actors who can impersonate Mel Blanc in his prime, including characterizations of Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Elmer Fudd and other characters from Warner Bros. cartoons.

    • Billy West did the main character voice of I-Ninja in the 2003 videogame, I-Ninja.

    • Billy West did the voice of Nash and Zam in the Crash Bandicoot videogame, Crash Nitro Kart.

    • Billy West did the voice of Murfy in the Rayman videogame, Rayman 3: Hoodlum Havoc.

    • Billy West did the voice of Magus and Ptah in the 2002 videogame, The Scorpion King: Rise of the Akkadian.

    • Billy West did the voice of Bolok in the 2001 videogame, Stupid Invaders.

    • Billy West did the voice of Muttley and Lil' Gruesome in the 2000 videogame, Wacky Races.

    • Recently, Futurama has been renewed for 16 new episodes. Billy West is confirmed to reprise his original roles. He also is an occasional contributor to The Adam Carolla Show, a syndicated morning radio show that replaced Howard Stern's show along West Coast American cities.

    • His favorite cartoon characters are Philip J. Fry from Futurama and Stimpy from The Ren & Stimpy Show.

    • Billy West currently provides the voice of BuzzBee, the Honey Nut Cheerios mascot.

    • Billy West turned down the opportunity to reprise the role as the legendary voice of Stimpy on John K.'s new "Ren & Stimpy Adult Party Cartoon" on Spike.

    • Billy West has been the voice talent for close to 120 different characters.

    • Billy West briefly worked on the short-lived internet show, "Billy Bastard: Amateur Human Professional A**hole".

    • He is a singer-songwriter with a band called Billy West and The Grief Counsellors.

    • West provided the voice of Stimpy in Nickelodeon's The Ren and Stimpy Show from 1991 until 1996, and he provided the voice of Ren from 1993-1996 (after Ren's original voice and series creator John Kricfalusi was fired by Nickelodeon). West's roles in Futurama include Philip J. Fry, Professor Hubert Farnsworth, Dr. Zoidberg and Zapp Brannigan.

    • According to the commentary for the Invader Zim pilot episode and Richard Horvitz's interview on the 1st Zim DVD, West was originally cast to provide the voice of Zim on the series, but the part was given to Horvitz instead. It was also disclosed on the DVD commentary that series creator Jhonen Vasquez disliked using Billy's voice as it reminded him of other cartoons, notably Futurama.

    • Billy West did the voice of Spyro the Dragon in the videogame, Spyro Ripto's Rage and Spyro Year fo the Dragon.

    • Billy West is a vegan.

    • He was the voice of Bugs Bunny since November 1996, then he stopped in November 2003.

    • He did a voice for the Bioware RPG, Baldur's Gate II - Shadows of Amn (2000) as Lehtinan.

  • Quotes

    • Billy: I don't get to watch Futurama, until it's on TV.

    • Billy: (Jokingly.)I've never watched the news in my life.

    • Billy: Robin Williams understands sonic performances. He understands what it's like to change your voice up. He understands what it's like to have theatre of the mind—and with your little strip of vocal cords, you're going to create heavens and hells and universes and populations of people, which is the whole idea that a voice person has in their head. It's like, "Whatever it is, I'll be it."

    • Billy: (On Futurama.) It had more layers than an onion. These writers meant business. There was a level for everybody. Your major could be celestial mechanics, and there'd be celestial-mechanics jokes.

    • Billy: (Talking About Improv And ab-libing On Futurama) After you do what the writers kind of ask you to do, and then they have everything to choose from. And then David Cohen (head writer and executive producer) will say to me, "Do you have any idea what you want to do? Just whatever you feel like." I'll give it a try and sometimes it works and sometimes it just doesn't.

    • Billy: (About Futurama table reads.) They treated it like a sitcom because it was in prime time.

    • Billy: (on the differences between The Simpsons and Futurama) These characters are together all the time but they're not a family; they're distinctive, well-crafted people. There's no kids and a grandfather and this and that, it's just them, and they're relating to each other every single day like that. And on The Simpsons, I think they go outside the box and they have interfaces with a lot more people. Sometimes in Futurama it's a whole... I'm not sure; I know there's differences, like uh... I don't know, what's the word... Like flow, the type of writing.

    • Billy: (on going into audition for Futurama and the writing of the show) They had pieces of dialogue. And once I got into it and got that part of the show, I began to see what he was all about. And I loved the writing; the writing had more layers than an onion.

    • Billy: (talking about the reasons John Kricfalusi got fired from The Ren and Stimpy Show) It was a bunch of things, but you know, it was non-delivery of episodes... but he did fight like hell, because they (Nickelodeon) would approve storyboards and then they'd renege on it, I mean that's what I heard.

    • Billy: (talking about Queer Duck: The Movie) It's from Mike Reiss, he was one of the creators of The Simpsons, for getting it on TV and everything, and he decided he was going to do this project, and he called me up. I used to do webisodes for the Queer Duck webisode site, and it was extremely funny, it was a riot. So they finally decided to make a movie. And I play a character in it called Bi Polar Bear.

    • Billy: (talking about The Ren and Stimpy Show) Originally, I was chosen to do both voices before the show started and then they dropped that idea, and John was going to do the character (Ren) and I was going to do Stimpy. And then he got fired after the first season, and they went out and had this huge casting call, and they remembered that "Hey, wasn't Billy supposed to do it?", and then they went and fished out my old audition tape and gave it (the part of Ren) to me. I never lobbied for it.

    • Billy: (after being asked how it feels to be part of shows that are classics) It feels great, but after all these years, I've come to discover that it's not about how great it was – it was about the experience personally, on a human level.

    • Billy: (on his scare with prostate cancer) I didn't even tell my mom about this junk until I was out of the woods. The whole thing just snuck up on me but never, ever did I play the victim or bemoan my fate. Life is for the living. I was a little scared before surgery 'cause of the release you sign that says there's always a very small percent chance that you'll die during the operation.

    • Billy: (On why he didn't continue the voice of Doug, when it moved to ABC) I pretty much felt I did all that I could with the character. I was ready to move on to different projects and opportunities.

    • Billy: (summing up his expierence on Futurama) I thought the whole experience – from top to bottom – was totally professional and really cool. I never had anybody bugging me for anything – no directors standing on my throat while they're directing me. That kind of abuse came with Ren & Stimpy... just being battered, and where other actors were beaten down. Just emotional wrecks, where they had to come in with a tow truck and pick up the bodies and get them out of there. That's what I was told by Nickelodeon – they were saying, "You've gotta watch out – this guy wears actors out." And I said, "Bring it on! I had the worst things that can happen to a human being happen in the first 10 years of my life happen to me, so I was tailor-made for abuse." But I didn't know how long I would last with all the screaming and yelling – but not just screaming and yelling, it was particular screaming and yelling.

    • Billy: (talking about going in and auditioning for Futurama, while meeting Matt Groening) I was thrilled out of my mind! Because I came in and I shook hands with him, and I said, "It's really nice to meet you…" He says, "I'm a big fan…" And I go, "And I sort of know who you are, too!"

    • Billy: (Talking about his role of 'Fry,' on Futurama.)It's basically just a twenty-five year old version of me.

    • Billy West: If celebrities that are schnoring in on our field started out trying to do what we do and were held to the standards we started out upholding, a great many of them would've never made it.

  • This man is amazing

    I thoroughly enjoy Billy's voice-acting and the characters that he portrays! He can switch his voice at the tip of a hat, and not a whole lot of voice actors are able to do that. I mean, the guy plays almost all of the main male protagonists on Futurama, and he voices BOTH Ren and Stimpy.

    He's a voice-acting legend, and I'm honored to have him play characters from my childhood.moreless
  • Nicktoon's verson of Jason Griffth

    Why is it that CatDog still airs I mean Billy is the reson why nicktoon network is Nicktoons Crap work

    & he also did Mushu from House of Mouse thats so sad for him

    Billy isn't allow to voice Rancid, Sunshine, Mushu, Kyle, or any negitive role what so ever.

    Beat Billy we hate you.