Death of actor Roger Carel, great voice of dubbing

The actor specializing in dubbing Roger Carel, on the set of the show “Vivement Dimanche”, in October 2012. Getty Images / Gamma-Rapho / Serge Benhamou

Text by: Frédéric Charpentier Follow

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Comedian Roger Carel, also a dubbing legend, died on September 11 at the age of 93.

Her family didn't release the news until Friday.

An actor in theater, television and cinema, he is first known for having been the voice of Asterix and of so many other characters.


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If there is one voice that we will remember,

it's Roger Carel


The common point between many Disney characters like Mickey, Winnie the Pooh, Jiminy Cricket, the snake Kaa in

The Jungle Book

, the brave Asterix the Gaul of Uderzo and Goscinny and the wise Maestro of the animated series of the 1980s

Once upon a time


It's his voice.

The eccentric or zany characters such as Benny Hill, Kermitt the frog, the C3PO robot in the Star Wars saga, the alien Alf from the series of the same name, or the famous detective Hercule Poirot played by David Suchet, it's him as well.

The legend of the cinema Charlie Chaplin would have chosen him himself in 1968 to be "his French voice".

He would have declared "

 it is this voice that I would like for The Dictator 

", first film spoken by the master of silent cinema,

tells Roger Carel

to LCI.

Even the giant of British cinema Peter Ustinov, who is however used to dub himself in French, asks the actor to replace him when he cannot ensure the dubbing.

But it is not him who made the approach to enter this universe at its beginnings.

A producer notices him during a performance at the theater.

He accepts the proposal.

It doesn't matter to him not to show his image.

After all, his voice is instantly recognizable and the dubbing activity is just one of the many facets of the acting profession.

This does not prevent him from working on other projects, as he demonstrates so well throughout his journey.

More than 60 years of career

For the first adaptations of Asterix

on the radio in the mid-1960s, Roger Carel was spotted and chosen by Uderzo and Goscinny, the creators of the comic strip.

Over time, very strong bonds are forged between them.


 Uderzo and Goscinny are two old friends that I have kept for so long, I still have a bond with their children

," he confides on the airwaves of Europe 1 in 2013.

We had almost family ties, we have so much worked on these characters! 


Roger Carel at the premiere of the film "Asterix and the Vikings", March 16, 2006. Stephane Cardinale / Corbis via Getty Images

In more than 60 years of career, he multiplies the appearances with about twenty roles in the theater, about thirty on television including

the famous commissioner Guerchard in

Arsène Lupine

, about fifty roles in the cinema, radio dramas and some short films.

He also embraces the music hall alongside Jacqueline Maillan.

In the 1970s, we see him give the answer in the program

Number one

, of Maritie and Gilbert Carpentier.

A pledge of spectacle on the small screen which mixes songs, dances and sketches, where the stars of the time rub shoulders.

Roger Carel also works with famous directors and directors such as Robert Hossein, Claude Zidi, Jean Poiret or Michel Serrault.

But it is when he disappears from the screen or from the boards and lends his voice for French adaptations of foreign works or for cartoons that his career explodes.

“Roger Carel.

It sounds good !


Born in 1927, René Bancharel (real name) developed a taste from his teenage years to have fun with his vocal cords.

Originally destined to become a monk then an engineer, he abandoned this path and wanted to make comedy.

It was his aunt who found him an audition with Jean Marchat, a member of the Comédie-Française.

Roger Carel then takes a first step in the world of theater.

There followed lessons during the Bauer-Thérond course, where he learned his skills with Anouk Aimée, Jacques Ciron or even Michel Piccoli, then during the Simon course.

He got his first role in 1949, at the Renaissance theater.

Only one shadow on the board: his name.

This poses a problem for the actor, because it is very often scratched by his teachers or during meetings "in the middle".

It was the actor René Simon, founder of the eponymous course, who found his stage name at the dawn of his career.

 We're going to cut Bancharel in two.

Charel, no… Carel.

Roger Carel.

It sounds good ! 

», He recalls.

At almost 87 years old, he left the studios and retired definitively to Villemomble (in the Paris region), where he had lived for many years.

He played Asterix one last time

in the animated feature

Asterix, the domain of the gods

in 2014. What was his “magic potion” for having such a prolific career?

He confides: “

 It was this wonderful job that kept me up wonderfully, I had the chance to play a lot.

Theater, TV, dubbing.

When we have happiness, we age less quickly! 


Interactive image: the thousand and one voices of Roger Carel


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