If you don’t know the name or the face, you definitely know the voice. I’d guess he was the narration voice on over 85% of the movie trailers over the past 30+ years. You know, that clear, perfect-sounding, booming voice that enticed you into the theater to see a movie.
Unfortunately, that voice has now been silenced. Don LaFontaine passed away today at Cedars-Sinai hospital after being admitted on August 21st with a blood clot on his lung.
Many years ago, I had the opportunity to know Don. It was a crazy time. I was hanging out with the nephew of the owner of the biggest trailer company in Hollywood. They did all the biggest movies and a lot of the smaller ones too. Don worked there a lot. And was also a part of that particular social circle. I’d see him at the uncle’s parties – Oscar, Golden Globes…whatever – and occasionally at his place for various reasons. Yup, it was a crazy time.
I always found Don to be a great guy. He was super-sharp and had a good sense of humor. And there was that voice. Booming. He could scare the shit out of you just by opening his mouth. Didn’t even matter what he said.
R.I.P. Don LaFontaine. Movie trailers will never be the same.