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Don LaFontaine Net Worth, Biography & Wiki 2017
Donald Leroy LaFontaine was born on the 26th August 1940 in Duluth, Minnesota, USA, and was a famous voice actor who lent his voice to more than 5,000 film and video game trailers, as well as hundreds of thousands of television advertisements, and various internet promotions. His career was active from 1962 until 2008, when he passed away.
So, have you ever wondered how rich Don LaFontaine was? It was estimated by authoritative sources that LaFontaine’s net worth was over $80 million, the result of his successful involvement in the entertainment industry mostly as a voice actor.
Don LaFontaine Net Worth $80 Million
Don LaFontaine was raised by his parents Alfred and Ruby LaFontaine. In 1958, he matriculated from Duluth Central High School, and immediately joined the United States Army; he was stationed at Fort Meyer, Virginia, and worked as a recording engineer for the US Army Band and Chorus.
Shortly after his discharge, he moved to New York and began his career as a sound editor and engineer at National Recording Studios. In 1962 he started working with radio producer Floyd L. Peterson on radio advertisements for Stanley Kubrick’s “Dr. Strangelove”, and the two worked so well together that they went into business in 1963, producing advertisements exclusively for the motion picture industry, which added a considerable amount to his net worth. In the following years, their company became successful enough to employ more than 30 people. LaFontaine and Peterson are often credited as the creators of many famous catch phrases that can still be heard in trailers, such as “In a world…”, “A one man army”, and “Nowhere to run, nowhere to hide, and no way out”.
LaFontaine’s professional voice acting career began in 1965, after he had to replace the unavailable voice actor for the trailer of the western film “Gunfighters of Casa Grande” in order to have something to present to their client, MGM. To his surprise, MGM bought the spots, thus LaFontaine continued to work as a voice over artist for the next 16 years.
For a number of years he worked for, and eventually became the head of Kaleidoscope Films Ltd., a film trailer production house. In 1976, he decided to become independent, and started his own production company called Don LaFontaine Associates, with his first work being the trailer for “The Godfather, Part II”, increasing further his net worth. Two years later, he was asked to join Paramount Pictures as the head of their trailer department. He became the Vice President of the company, but decided to leave and move from New York to Los Angeles in 1981, as he missed being involved in the active production.
Over the following years in Los Angeles, LaFontaine was at his peak, voicing over 60 promotions a week, sometimes as many as 35 per day. Most studios were willing to pay high fees for his services, which significantly increased his net worth. He was nicknamed ‘Thunder Throat’, and ‘The Voice of God’.
During his lifetime, LaFontaine cemented his position as the ‘King of Voiceovers’. He worked on nearly 5000 films, such as “Terminator 2: Judgment Day”, “Shrek”, “Law & Order”, “Batman Returns” and many others, and lent his voice to various programs on NBC, CBS, ABC, Fox, UPN, Cartoon Network, and others. Additionally, he voiced hundreds of thousands of television and radio advertisements, for companies such as Chevrolet, Ford, Budweiser, McDonalds, Coke, etc. All of these projects increased his net worth to a large degree.
Regarding his personal life, Don LaFontaine was married to Joan Studva from 1967 until 1988. In 1989, he married singer and actress Anita Whitaker. He was the father of four children. Don passed away of complications from a pneumothorax at the age of 68, on the 1st September 2008 in Los Angeles, California.