Charles Fleischer has garnered more fame for a role in which he was heard but not seen rather than for his often manic comedy and comedy-with-music acts. While such performances have made him a favorite of other comedians, they did not gain him top-rung status with the general public. But audiences loved him as the voice of the animated Roger Rabbit, the frenetic movie star Fleischer inhabited for "Who Framed Roger Rabbit" (1988) and several subsequent cartoon shorts. He also did other voices for the films, including Benny The Cab and the two sinister weasels, Greasy and Psycho. Additionally, Fleischer has provided voices for other animated films and TV programs as well.
Fleischer moved West to Los Angeles in the early 1970s where he began performing in comedy clubs. He made his TV debut with an appearance on "Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In" in 1972. Fleischer then spent much of the decade as a regular on a number of short-lived variety and sketch comedy programs and sitcoms. Among the more notable were including "Keep on Trucking" (ABC. 1975), "The Richard Pryor Show" (NBC, 1977) and as a sweathog during the 1978-79 season of "Welcome Back Kotter." In 1983, Alan Thicke tapped Fleischer to be part of the comedy troupe performing sketch segments on his late-night "Thicke of the Night"
Fleischer's feature film career was slower in getting started. He had a supporting role in "Die Laughing" (1980), a Robby Benson vehicle, and also appeared in "Night Shift" (1982), but it was "Roger Rabbit" that gave Fleischer a name, although on-camera feature work remained elusive. One instance was a turn as the cab driver of Anna Chlumsky and Austin O'Brien in "My Girl 2" (1994). But the "Roger Rabbit" connection did snare Fleischer frequent spots on TV variety specials, including "The Prince's Trust Gala" in 1989, and numerous Disney specials, including "Mickey's 60th Birthday" and "Disneyland's 35th Anniversary Celebration." In the 90s, Fleischer contributed humorous segments under the umbrella "The Fleischer Files" to the futuristic cable series, "Next Step" (The Discovery Channel, 1992). He has also performed comedy on many pay TV and cable programs, including HBO's "One Night Stand."
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Made TV debut with an appearance on "Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In"
Was series regular on short-lived "Keep on Trucking" (ABC)
TV-movie acting debut, samll role in "The Death of Richie" (NBC)
Was member of repertory company, "The Richard Pryor Show" (NBC)
Appeared on the ABC sitcom "Sugar Time"
Joined the cast of "Welcome Back, Kotter" (ABC)
Feature film debut, small role in "Die Laughing"
Was member of the comedy troupe for the syndicated late night variety series, "Thicke of the Night"
Provided the voice of Roger Rabbit, "Who Framed Roger Rabbit"
Was segment host of "The Fleischer Files" on "Next Step"
Had regular role on the ABC Saturday morning show "Bone Chillers"
Voiced Elf General in the animated feature "The Polar Express" directed by Robert Zemeckis