Children's Television Loses a Beloved Voice

William Dufris has died of cancer at age 62
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 25, 2020 5:15 PM CDT
Children's Television Loses a Beloved Voice
William Dufris.   (YouTube)

"Can we build it?" "Yes we can!" Anyone familiar with the beloved Bob the Builder catchphrase will care about this. Voice actor William Dufris, who handled the show's title character and four others, has died of cancer at age 62, Entertainment Weekly reports. "We are heartbroken to announce that the co-founder of @pocketplot and the director of 'EC Comics Presents ... The Vault of Horror,' William Dufris, has died from cancer," Pocket Universe Productions tweeted Tuesday. "There is a hole in a lot of people’s hearts right now. We will have more to say later. Bless you, Bill."

Born in 1958 in Maine, Dufris became a voice actor in his 20s after moving to London, where he performed in BBC Radio plays with luminaries like Kathleen Turner, Helena Bonham-Carter, and Stockard Channing, Deadline reports. His big break came with the US/Canadian version of Bob the Builder, a kids' show that ran from 2001 to 2018 and followed the life of carpenter Bob and his team of building vehicles. He also played Peter Parker in the audio drama The Amazing Spider-Man. "From doing animation I learned to breathe in character," he once told Audio File Magazine. "It enables me to switch quickly to the next character." He also said that "I learn from and listen to other narrators all the time." (Read more obituary stories.)

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