Helen Mirren 'hopeless' at voice acting

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Complete coverage of The Voice television show. Four famous musicians search for the best voices in America and will mentor these singers to become artists. America will decide which singer will be worthy of the grand prize.
June 10th, 2013

Dame Helen Mirren is ''hopeless'' at voice acting.

The actress, who lends her voice to Dean Hardscrabble in Disney-Pixar's 'Monsters University', is known for her incredible presence on the stage and screen and found it a difficult challenge to express herself through just her speech in the new animated film.

She said: ''I'm actually hopeless at voice acting. I'd loved to have been in the room with Billy [Crystal] and John [Goodman] and watched the masters at work and learned from them. Americans are brilliant at voiceovers. I don't think Brits are as good at it, weirdly.''

The 67-year-old actress - who earned an Oscar for her powerful portrayal of Queen Elizabeth in 'The Queen' - credits the film's director, Dan Scanlon, for helping her perfect her vocal role as the hard-nosed university principal.

Speaking at the 'Monsters University' press conference in London, she said: ''I had Dan guiding me, telling me what worked and what didn't work. It's a learning process. I did learn to be more present; just to put it in the voice is quite different from being expressive [with your body].''

'Monsters University' sees Crystal and Goodman reprise their roles as loveable monsters Mike and Sulley from 'Monsters, Inc.' and tells the story of how they first met at a special school for wannabe scarers - the creatures who frighten human children and use their screams to power the city of Monstropolis.