Paul Robert Soles (August 11, 1930 – May 26, 2021)[1] was a Canadian actor and television personality. He led the voice cast in such series as The Marvel Super Heroes (1966), voiced the title character in Spider-Man (1967), and portrayed Hermey in the 1964 television special Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer; Soles was one of the last surviving participants of the special's voice cast.

Paul Soles
Born
Paul Robert Soles

(1930-08-11)August 11, 1930
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
DiedMay 26, 2021(2021-05-26) (aged 90)
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
OccupationActor, television personality
Years active1953–2021

Soles first screen appearance was on CFPL in 1953, and he continued to perform over 60 years later, performing as of 2016 in the comedy web series My 90-Year-Old Roommate on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation's online comedy channel, CBC Comedy.[1][2]

CareerEdit

Acting rolesEdit

Soles was the voice of Hermey the misfit elf in Rankin/Bass' Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer from 1964. He also voiced Marvel superhero Spider-Man in the original animated television series also from the 1960s, and he played "The Lawbreaker" on the CBC panel quiz show This Is the Law in the 1970s, and played Costas Stavros on the Canadian soap opera Riverdale. In 2001, Soles took over the role of Shylock the Jew in the Stratford Festival of Canada production of The Merchant of Venice after Al Waxman, who was originally scheduled to play the part, died.[3] Soles played Stanley the pizza shop owner in The Incredible Hulk (2008), and his other film appearances have included roles in Ticket to Heaven (1981), Just the Way You Are (1984) and The Gunrunner (1989) opposite Kevin Costner. He also played Danny, the Montreal Customs House janitor in the 2001 crime thriller The Score.

Soles won a 2006 Gemini Award for his role in the television series Terminal City,[4] and a 2017 Canadian Screen Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Digital Production for My 90-Year-Old Roommate.[5]

Voice workEdit

Soles also did voices on various animated television shows and films such as Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Rocket Robin Hood, The Smokey Bear Show, The Little Brown Burro, King of the Beasts, The Marvel Super Heroes, the original Spider-Man cartoon, The Trolls and the Christmas Express, Take Me Up to the Ball Game, Willy McBean and his Magic Machine, Festival of Family Classics, JoJo's Circus, The Reluctant Dragon & Mr. Toad Show, Noah's Animals, Iron Man, The King Kong Show, and Spider-Woman.

Soles was also the narrator of The Wonderful Stories of Professor Kitzel, the voice of The Commissioner in the 2005 animated television series Funpak and has also supplied the voice of Dr. Reboux in the 2005 animated film version of the Johanna Spyri novel Heidi.

Soles also voiced the Academy Award-nominated animated documentary The Colours of My Father: A Portrait of Sam Borenstein.[6]

In 2011, Soles started voicing the recurring character Maxwell Finnwich on Detentionaire and he voiced a character, Barnabas Dinklelot, in the 2017-2018 animated series, Mysticons.[7]

Television hostingEdit

He was the host of the short-lived CBC Television late-night comedy talk show Canada After Dark, and co-hosted the public affairs show Take 30 for 18 seasons with hosts such as Anna Cameron and Adrienne Clarkson. He also hosted the CFPL television game show Take Your Choice for one year in the early 1960s.[4]

Documentary producerEdit

Paul Soles was also a producer of documentaries while he was an on-air talent at CFPL-TV in London, Ontario. He worked on a series called, The World Around Us, and travelled with film crews in Great Britain in the early 1960s, filming many aspects of British life. He even got on a soap-box in Hyde Park in London to speak his mind. Soles has worked with people like Dennis Goulden (a long-time documentarian who still produces television specials in the States) and Jim Plant and Tom Ashwell and Jon Boynton.

Personal lifeEdit

Soles was born in Toronto, the son of Lillian (Goodfellow) and Arthur L. Soles. His family were Jewish emigrants from Poland and Lithuania.[8] He had two siblings. Soles is cousin of Bernard "Bunny" Cowan, and they both worked on the original 1960s Spider-Man animated series and the 1967 children's series Max, the 2000-Year-Old Mouse.[1][9]

DeathEdit

Soles died in Toronto, Ontario, Canada on May 26, 2021, at the age of 90.[10][11]

FilmographyEdit

FilmEdit

Year Title Role Notes
1965 Willy McBean and His Magic Machine Pablo the Monkey, King Ferdinand (voice)
1981 Ticket to Heaven Morley
1983 The Magic Show Manny
The Gunrunner Leobman
1984 Just the Way You Are Arthur Berlanger
1987 The Last Straw [citation needed]
1988 Family Reunion Morris
1990 Falling Over Backwards Harvey
1991 A Star for Two [citation needed]
1992 Beethoven Lives Upstairs Mr. Schindler
1993 The Lotus Eaters Tobias Spittle
1994 Trial by Jury Mr. Kriegsberg, Juror
1998 Shadow Builder Mr. Butterman
1999 Teen Knight Mr. Percy, Perceval
Hidden Agenda Wilhelm Engelmann
The Five Senses Mr. Bernstein
2001 The Score Danny
2004 Siblings Grandpa
2005 Heidi Doctor Reboux (voice)
2006 My First Wedding Harry
2008 Adoration Passenger, Professor On-Line
The Incredible Hulk Stanley
2016 The Second Time Around Marvin Final film role

TelevisionEdit

Year Title Role Notes
1964 Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer Hermey (voice) Stop-motion TV special
1966 Charlie Had One But He Didn't Like It, So He Gave It To Us Himself
The Marvel Super Heroes Bruce Banner, Attuma, Hawkeye / Clint Barton, Rick Jones, Boomerang / Frederick "Fred" Myers (voice)
1967–1970 Spider-Man Peter Parker / Spider-Man, Vulture, Fantastic Fakir, Ox, Vulture, Attendant, Police officer, Guard, Fozwell, Henchman, Mr. Thompson, Bob, Dean Wilkins, Man, Man at control panel, Bomber pilot, Borer, Black Dog One, News reporter, Dr. Irving Caldwell, Tom, Reptilla, Dr. Curtis Conner, Prison guard, Thug #2 (voice)
1967–1992 Max, the 2000-Year-Old Mouse Max (voice)

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c Wise, Wyndham. "Soles, Paul". The Canadian Encyclopedia. Retrieved 29 September 2016.
  2. ^ Reid, Regan (5 April 2016). "CBC orders 10 episodes of My 90-Year-Old Roommate for Punchline". Playback. Retrieved 29 September 2016.
  3. ^ "Paul Soles (profile)". Northern Stars. Archived from the original on 30 November 2010. Retrieved 30 May 2009.
  4. ^ a b Brady, Bill (30 May 2009). "Indefatigable Soles". London Free Press. Archived from the original on 14 December 2019. Retrieved 30 May 2009.
  5. ^ "CBC web series score wins as Canadian Screen Awards celebrate all things digital". CBC News. 10 March 2017.
  6. ^ "The Colours of My Father: A Portrait of Sam Borenstein". National Film Board of Canada. Archived from the original on 22 February 2012.
  7. ^ "Paul Soles". Behind the Voice Actors. 14 November 2020. Archived from the original on 14 November 2020. Retrieved 14 November 2020.
  8. ^ Ahearn, Victoria (31 May 2021). "Actor Paul Soles, who voiced lead role in 1960s animated Spider-Man series, dies at 90". The Globe and Mail.
  9. ^ Bell, John (2006). Invaders from the North: How Canada Conquered the Comic Book Universe. Dundurn Press. p. 116. ISBN 978-1-55002-659-7.
  10. ^ Perine, Aaron (28 May 2021). "Spider-Man Original Voice Actor Paul Soles Dies at 90". ComicBook.com. Retrieved 29 May 2021.
  11. ^ "Paul SOLES Obituary (1930-2021) - Toronto, ON - The Globe and Mail". Legacy.com.

External linksEdit

Preceded by
None
Voice of Spider-Man
1967-1970
Succeeded by
Ted Schwartz