Voice actor Kevin Conroy – best known for voicing Batman in cartoons – has died aged 66 after a short battle with cancer.
Conroy voiced the Dark Knight in 60 different productions over three decades, including 15 films such as Batman: Mask Of The Phantasm and 15 animated series, including Batman: The Animated Series, spanning nearly 400 episodes and more than 100 hours of television, as well as video games.
Mark Hamill, 71, who played the Joker opposite Conroy in Batman: The Animated Series, said: “He was one of my favourite people on the planet, and I loved him like a brother.
“He truly cared for the people around him – his decency shone through everything he did.
“Every time I saw him or spoke with him, my spirits were elevated.”
Hamill, best known for his role as Luke Skywalker in the Star Wars film series, added: “For several generations, he has been the definitive Batman.
“It was one of those perfect scenarios where they got the exact right guy for the exact right part, and the world was better for it.
“His rhythms and subtleties, tones and delivery – that all also helped inform my performance.
“He was the ideal partner – it was such a complementary, creative experience.
“I couldn’t have done it without him. He will always be my Batman.”
Conroy was born in 1955 in Westbury, New York, and studied acting at The Julliard School alongside Christopher Reeve and his roommate Robin Williams.
Conroy was also featured as a live-action Bruce Wayne when DC Comics shows Arrow, Supergirl, The Flash, DC’s Legends Of Tomorrow and Batwoman had several crossover episodes.
Diane Pershing, who played Poison Ivy opposite Conroy, wrote on Facebook said: “He really put in a lot of time at the (Comic Con events), to the joy of all of his fans.
“He will be sorely missed not just by the cast of the series but by his legion of fans all over the world.”
Emmy Award-winning casting and dialogue director Andrea Roman, whose work includes Batman: The Animated Series, said in a statement: “Kevin was far more than an actor whom I had the pleasure of casting and directing – he was a dear friend for 30+ years whose kindness and generous spirit knew no boundaries.
“Kevin’s warm heart, delightfully deep laugh and pure love of life will be with me forever.”
Conroy is survived by his husband Vaughn C Williams, sister Trisha Conroy and brother Tom Conroy.