Howie Nave, Lake Tahoe Action

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August 23, 2012
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Who booked the voice of Roger Rabbit?

Think you're too much a part of your work? Try being Charles Fleischer.

"I am unable to get outside of my work," he said. "It is intrinsically linked to all of my actions."

That sounds more like a man trapped because of his work doesn't it? He's funny and very quick on his feet but he's also one of the more brilliant minds I've ever met.

Oh sure he's a great comic and also has appeared in a ton of movies, television done voiceover work in addition to being an incredible artist (which he sells prints after the show) but if you can get him to start talking about the vastness of space and science you'll discover yet another facet of Charles that seems unbelievable.

He once told me, "I'm thinking the universe is either a dodecahedron or a cheeseburger and for me, that's a win-win."

He introduced me to the concept known as Moleeds and how it relates to all things numerical in the universe. He's fascinated by the relationship between the numbers 27 and 37. As Charles puts it, "The numbers between those two - 27 and 37 - affect everything from protons, neutrons to croutons." That is the "blueprint for infinity" called Moleeds. Yeah, I know I too am scratching my head.

Fleischer has had (and continues) one of the most amazing careers ever. He made his TV debut with an appearance on "Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In" back in 1972 followed by appearances on a number of short-lived variety and sketch comedy programs and sitcoms that included "Keep on Trucking" (on ABC in1975), "The Richard Pryor Show" (on NBC in 1977) and as a sweathog during the 1978-79 season of "Welcome Back Kotter." Yes! "Welcome Back Kotter!"

In 1983 Alan Thicke tapped Fleischer to be part of this comedy troupe performing sketch segments on his late-night program, "Thicke of the Night." There are so many other TV credits but it would take forever to list them here.

On the big screen (again, too many to mention here) he did a wide variety of flicks such as "Die Laughing" (1980), "Night Shift" (1982) and "Bad Dreams" (1988) before hitting pay dirt with his next project voicing the title character in the groundbreaking movie, "Who Framed Roger Rabbit?"

He was so good in this flick that director Robert Zemeckis used Charles to voice several other characters in the film that included Benny The Cab and the two sinister weasels, Greasy and Psycho. Fleischer appeared in countless other motion pictures including 2004's "The Polar Express" (also directed by Zemeckis) as the voice of Elf General and in 2007's "Zodiac" playing the creepy in-the-basement character of Bob Vaughn. Some of my personal favorites include his character in "Back to the Future II" and as one of the medical professors in "Gross Anatomy" which also starred Mathew Modine, Daphne Zuniga and Christine Lahti. He just wrapped staring in the apocalyptic thriller, "Dystopia" which should be out by year's end.

Charles Fleischer is the only comic that we've ever had booked just by himself. I come out and do a few minutes and then Charles comes out and does over an hour of the funny! You don't want to miss the show because it's more of an experience where, if you're lucky you get to actually become part of the show as well and I'll just leave it at that.


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Tahoe Daily Tribune Updated Aug 23, 2012 12:27PM Published Aug 23, 2012 12:24PM Copyright 2012 Tahoe Daily Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.