Toon Talk Special: The 101 Greatest Disney Voice Artists - Part 1 of 2 Page 3 of 9

Heroines "I hate spunk!" Lou Grant so famously bellowed at Mary Richards in the television classic The Mary Tyler Moore Show. If that's true, then he must not care to much for the following females, who all share that winning trait.

Irene Bedard

Poca.JPG (6605 bytes) (c) Disney

As the title character in Pocahontas, Bedard brings a noble dignity and a playful innocence to her role as the American legend. She was also the physical model for Pocahontas, whom she returned to play in the video sequel, Pocahontas II: Journey To A New World.

Ming-Na Wen

Mulan.JPG (6065 bytes) Ming.JPG (4794 bytes) (l) Ping - (c) Disney

(r) Ming-Na Wen in One Night Stand (c) New Line Cinema

Wen provided the tom-boy determination to both Fa Mulan and her male alter-ego Fa Ping in Mulan. In addition to House of Mouse, she will return to the role for the upcoming video sequel, tentatively titled Mulan II. She also voices the heroine Dr. Aki Ross in the upcoming non-Disney animation Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within.

Cree Summer

Kida.JPG (9037 bytes) (c) Disney

Like Pocahontas and Mulan before her, Summer's Princess Kida in Atlantis: The Lost Empire is a heroine to admire. She is not afraid to go against her father's wishes and befriend the strangers from the surface, and she can sure take care of herself when the going gets tough. Plus, Summers had to learn a whole new language for the film.

Summers will return as Kida in the upcoming Team Atlantis television series, and has also been heard in Gargoyles, Jungle Cubs, 101 Dalmatians: The Series, Pepper Ann, An Extremely Goofy Movie, Buzz Litghtyear of Star Command and Teacher's Pet.

Minnie Driver

Jane.jpg (10346 bytes) (c) Disney

Embodied in live action by actresses as diverse as Maureen O'Sullivan to Bo Derek, Tarzan's mate Jane is a classic film character. For the Disney animated version, Driver recreated Jane as an independent free spirit, one who obviously has it in her to fall in love with a man in a loincloth.

Kathryn Beaumont

KB.JPG (12825 bytes) Animator Marc Davis and Kathryn Beaumont

(c) Disney

Starting at a mere ten-years old, Beaumont was the voice of two classic British literary figures turned Disney heroines, Alice in Alice in Wonderland and Wendy in Peter Pan. She can still be heard today as Alice in House of Mouse.

Hayden Panettiere

The youngest actress on this list, Panettiere has already voiced Princess Dot ("It's a rock.") in A Bug's Life and Suri ("Look at all the other Aladars!") in Dinosaur. Her enthusiastic line readings bring a youthful energy to her characters.

Joan Cusack

jessie.jpg (10410 bytes) (c) Disney

"Yeee-haaa!" Cusack's spunky cowgirl Jessie is a wonderful addition to the Toy Story universe. She has already become a beloved character, and was recently inducted into the National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame.

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