Keith David’s 5 Greatest Roles Behind the Scenes


While celebrities playing roles in animated films and TV shows have been commonplace since the 90s, it is much rarer for a performer to become more famous for his voice acting career than for his appearance in front of the camera. However, this is exactly the case when it comes to the legend of voicing Keith David.

Keith David has starred in a large number of live action films, from “Something” and “Platoon” to “The Riddick Chronicles” and “Cloud Atlas”. However, he is arguably more iconic thanks to the various animation projects and video games to which he lent his famous resonant voice, including the likes of Mass Effect, Princess Mononoke, Coraline, Adventure Time, Rick and Morty and even Dissidia Final Fantasy. But of all the many voice roles in David’s prolific career, these five stand above all others.

Goliath (gargoyles)

One of Keith David’s first roles behind the scenes was the role of Goliath, the main character of the 1994 Disney cartoon “Gargoyles”. Created by Greg Weisman, Gargoyles tells the story of a clan of mythical gargoyles who turn to stone during the day and protect New York from meanness at night. Goliath is the leader of the Manhattan clan, who earned his name centuries ago due to his tall stature and impressive strength. Despite the fact that he is the main character of the Saturday morning cartoon, Goliath, as a rule, behaves stoically and with dignity, however, he is really a kind soul, despite his intimidating appearance, and he will do everything to protect both his family and the city to which he came. call home.

Goliath is a truly multifaceted character, capable of being thoughtful, compassionate, intelligent, determined and terrifying — all within the framework of one episode. And true to form, Keith David’s game masterfully brings it to life. David’s rich and rumbling voice gives Goliath exactly the kind of regal, domineering presence he needs. However, Goliath is not always so serious — he is also known for showing wit when the moment demands it, and David catches these moments in the same way. And, of course, no gargoyle can forget Goliath’s overreaction to the fact that he tasted jalapeno pepper for the first time.

Almost 28 years after “Gargoyles” first aired, it’s still a cult classic among animation fans, and Goliath remains one of the defining roles in Keith David’s career. In fact, David became a mainstay of Greg Weisman’s later productions, voicing Tombstone in the first episode of The Thrilling Spider-Man, as well as Mongul in Young Justice. And as for Goliath’s own legacy, David recently appeared in the series finale of the 2017 reboot of Duck Stories, portraying a lighthearted parody of his original Disney role.

Dr. Fasillier (“The Princess and the Frog”)

But while Goliath may be Keith David’s most iconic Disney character, he’s not the one who got the most fame. This is Dr. Fasillier, the main villain of the 2009 film The Princess and the Frog. These days, this movie is mostly known as one of Walt Disney Animation Studios’ latest forays into traditional animation, rather than as the actual content of the movie. However, the main exception to this is none other than Dr. Fasillier, also known as the Shadow Man, a cunning and charismatic witch doctor who is plotting to gain control of New Orleans.

Or, of course, every great Disney villain needs a musical number, and Dr. Fasillier is no exception. David shows off his singing skills in “Friends on the Other Side,” a classic villainous song as catchy as it is sinister. “The Princess and the Frog” may not be Disney’s most beloved movie, but “Dr. Facile” is undoubtedly one of its highlights, thanks in no small part to David’s acting.


However, not all of Keith David’s animated roles are so suitable for children. One of the biggest comic book antiheroes of the 1990s was Spawn Image Comics, created by Todd MacFarlane. Despite being better known for his 1997 live action film starring Michael J. White, Spawn made his debut in another media in the same year. Spawn’s own animated series under the simple name “Todd MacFarlane’s Spawn”, which aired on HBO from 1997 to 1999, a total of 18 episodes. And, of course, Keith David voiced the titular antihero.

David’s bone-chilling performance style gave Spawn the ruthless seriousness he needed, and fans of the character still admire his performance to this day. In fact, David’s performance of Spawn proved so popular that he recently reprised the role in Mortal Kombat 11 2019, which was his first portrayal of the character in a video game. He may not be the only actor to bring Spawn to life, but he may well be the greatest.

Referee (Halo)

Any list of Keith David’s greatest roles would be incomplete without mentioning Tela’Vadami, also known as the Referee from the Halo video games.