The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences (NATAS) has announced that award-winning voice actor Peter Cullen will be the Lifetime Achievement Honoree at the 2nd Annual Children’s & Family Emmy® Awards. His prestigious honor will be presented during the gala celebration on Sunday, December 17. Cullen is being recognized for his enduring contributions as a voice actor in television and film over his expansive career.
Adam Sharp, President and CEO, NATAS, said: “We are thrilled to recognize Peter Cullen, who has voiced so many iconic characters over a lifetime of true achievement. His remarkable career in many genres of television and film make him an exemplary honoree.”
Peter Cullen said: “Are you sure they have the right Cullen? I spell it C-u-l-l-E-n. Seriously though, I am humbled to be recognized by the Academy with this great honor.”
Peter Cullen is known throughout the world as the voice of the wise and heroic leader of the Autobots, Optimus Prime, on the popular 1980s cartoon series “The Transformers,” and as the voice of various other robots, including Ironhide, Slugslinger, Streetwise, Wingspan, and Nightstick. In 1986, he reprised the voices of Optimus Prime and Ironhide in the animated film, “The Transformers: The Movie.” He voiced Optimus Prime in the blockbuster live-action motion picture franchise “Transformers,” and in all the subsequent installments, including “Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen” and “Transformers: Dark of the Moon,” as well as for “Bumblebee” and last summer’s “Transformers: Rise of the Beasts.” Cullen was nominated for an Emmy Award for his voice-over performance as Optimus Prime in the animated series, “Transformers Prime.” He also appeared in character in “Rescue Bots,” the pre-school animated “Transformers” series. He has portrayed this character in countless video and online games and toys and on the Calm Meditation app for children. For his years of service and devotion in creating this iconic character, Cullen was inducted into the Hasbro Hall of Fame as one of the first inductees and the first voice-over actor to be so honored. Cullen also lent his talents to the sad but sincere voice of Eeyore, the eternally pessimistic donkey from Winnie the Pooh who views the world through morose-colored glasses. Cullen’s voice has been heard in everything from cartoons and television commercials to theatrical promotions, beginning with the popular T.V. series, “The New Adventures of Winnie the Pooh,” to the “House of Mouse.” In addition, he is featured on “Disney’s Duck Tales” and plays Monterey Jack on “Chip ‘n’ Dale’s Rescue Rangers.” Earlier in the 80s, Cullen was the voice of K.A.R.R., the evil incarnation of K.I.T.T., the talking Pontiac Trans-Am, in the David Hasselhoff series, “Knight Rider.” He was also the voice of Mantus in “The Pirates of Dark Water,” Hägar in “Hägar the Horrible,” Cindarr in “Visionaries: Knights of the Magical Light,” Venger in “Dungeons and Dragons” and the narrator in the “Voltron” series, in which he also played Commander Hawkins. Other television credits include “Johnny Quest,” “Spider-Man,” “G.I. Joe,” “My Little Pony and Friends,” “Rainbow Brite,” “Scooby and Scrappy-Doo” and “The Jetsons.”
The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences (NATAS) is a service organization dedicated to the advancement of the arts and sciences of television and the promotion of creative leadership for artistic, educational, and technical achievements within the television industry. It recognizes excellence in television with the coveted Emmy® Awards for News & Documentary, Sports, Daytime, and Children’s & Family programming, as well as achievements in television Technology & Engineering.
NATAS membership consists of more than 18,000 broadcast and media professionals represented in 19 regional chapters across the country. Beyond awards, NATAS has extensive educational programs including regional student television and its Student Award for Excellence and the National Student Production Awards for outstanding journalistic work by high school students, as well as scholarships, publications, and major activities for both industry professionals and the viewing public.