Kari Wahlgren may not be the first name you think of when you think of Hollywood actresses, but she is big and you’ve likely heard her voice. Called one of the “best voice actresses in Hollywood”, Kari Wahlgren is tackling one project after another and putting her best foot forward every time. We talked with Wahlgren about her upcoming projects and what else she has going on. Check out everything she had to say!
KRISTIN: Tell me how you first got into acting.
KARI: I’ve been singing and doing plays since I was little. I was one of those kids who would start performing for anyone who’d listen! I ended up getting a theater degree at the University of Kansas and acted professionally in Kansas City before moving to Los Angeles.
KRISTIN: You do a lot of voice acting. Why voice acting over traditional acting?
KARI: I always wanted voice over to be part of my career. Even as a child, I’d watch cartoons and know that someone was doing the voices. When I moved to L.A., my hope was that I’d do on-camera work and voice over. I’ve ended up doing both, but the voice over side took off in a way that I didn’t expect!!
KRISTIN: I feel like voice acting can almost be harder because you don’t necessarily have a physical character to get into and you have to create this character’s personality from inside a sound booth. Do you agree or disagree with that assumption?
KARI: There are things about it that are harder…you can’t rely on your face or body to convey emotion. I remember once early in my career, I was working on a cartoon, and I did a line. The director told me to do it again even angrier. I did it again and he said “Your FACE looked angrier, but your VOICE sounded exactly the same.” That was a big lesson for me about the difference of voice acting. You have to really learn how to tell the story through your voice.
KRISTIN: You have a lot of projects. What are you currently working on or have coming out?
KARI: A number of projects have just come out…it’s pretty exciting! “OK KO: Let’s be Heroes” just launched on Cartoon Network…I’m playing Shannon on the show. It’s hilarious and so much fun; I’m having a blast with that one! The entire season of “Niko and the Sword of Light” is also available on Amazon Prime right now. It’s an action-adventure series…a very classic good vs. evil quest…I play Lyra, the young mentor and guide to the main hero. And I’m doing the voices for Dorothy and Ozma on the Boomerang streaming app’s new “Dorothy and the Wizard of Oz” cartoon. Being from Kansas, that one is especially sentimental to me right now.
KRISTIN: I hear you produced and wrote a short film called Girl #2. Where did the idea of that story come from and what process did you go through to bring it to fruition?
KARI: I am so, so proud of that short film! I was at a horror festival with one of my best friends years ago, and I told him I’d always had an idea for a short horror film. I told him what it was, and he said “You have to write it!!” So I went home that night and wrote the first version. The script got passed along to David Jeffrey, who wanted to direct a short film, and he loved it… so we collaborated and made the movie. It’s doing awesome on the festival circuit… we couldn’t be more proud! Our next step is to get it on a platform where more people can see it. Fingers crossed, that will be happening soon.
KRISTIN: You are labeled one of the best voice actresses in Hollywood. How serious is that title to you?
KARI: Oh wow…that’s really cool. I guess I don’t think about it much…I just try to show up and do the very best work I can in every session, and I feel so fortunate to get to do what I love… I don’t take it for granted. If I can keep doing this and keep getting better, I will count myself very lucky.
KRISTIN: Are we going to see you on our silver screen anytime in the future, or do you enjoy sticking to the voice acting?
KARI: I’d love to do more on-camera work in the future…we’ll see what happens.
KRISTIN: Where can fans keep up with you online? Do you maintain a social media site?
Make sure to check out all of Kari Wahlgren’s project now and follow her on her above linked social media sites to stay apprised of her upcoming projects!