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[Updated] Christopher Evan Welch did not voice Tails in “Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog”

Posted by Barry the NomadFollow Barry the Nomad on Twitter! on Dec 5th, 2013

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Update: a friend of the family replied to my inquiry stating “I believe this is a miscredit”, and I was directed to his agents who could potentially give me a solid answer. At the moment, it looks like Christopher Evan Welch did not voice Tails.

UPDATE 2: I have reached out to Christopher Evan Welch’s talent agency Paradigm in New York and the credit of Tails attributed to Christopher Evan Welch is “not accurate”. Thank you to Courtney of Paradigm for her help.

UPDATE 3: Another confirmation, this time from Christopher Evan Welch himself. A friend of his contacted me and told me “I asked Chris about it a couple of years ago and he said it was a mistake.” Also the voice of Coconuts, Ian James Corlett, informed us that the recording for the show took place in British Columbia, meaning Christopher Welch was likely a young boy from that area much like his 1996 replacement.

UPDATE 4: Ian James Corlett tweeted some more information to us, stating that the voice of Tails was from Seattle, which is quite a coincidence as that is the city where Christopher Evan Welch was working. While Christopher (not Evan) Welch was close to Vancouver, it’s possible he recorded his lines in Los Angeles. Jaleel White recorded in Los Angeles, and given the chemistry needed between Sonic and Tails, it is possible Christopher Welch recorded in LA.

This means that the voice actor for Tails, Christopher Welch, is a different person entirely and may still be out there.

Since the news broke that the voice actor for Tails in Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog had passed away, 90′s era Sonic fans such as myself were heartbroken to learn that we lost another actor from the iconic show. However, as I spoke with Sonic fans in various forums and instant message conversations, several red flags went up regarding Christopher Evan Welch’s participation in the cartoon series. For starters, there was the age. Christopher Evan Welch was 48 at the time of his passing, which means he was 28 in 1993. Several sources back this age up, including friends and family on Chris’s Facebook memorial page, comments on Variety.com’s story, and a photo on The Seattle Times which shows Christopher Evan Welch in 1993. He was definitely not an 11 year old in 1993.

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In the early ’90′s, Christopher Evan Welch (a Dallas native) was an up-and-coming Seattle stage actor. According to The Seattle Times, Christopher made his professional debut in 1991, starring in “The Illusion” at ACT Theatre. During 1992 and 1993, when Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog was in the midst of production, Christopher Evan Welch was performing major roles at Shakespeare festivals, and he worked at the Seattle Repertory Theatre appearing in the plays “She Stoops to Conquer”, “Buying Time”, and “Harvey”. Suffice to say, Christopher Evan Welch was a very talented and busy man between 1991-1993. The Seattle Times story never mentions a 26-28 year old Christopher taking a break from a busy acting career to voice a cartoon character in a video game adaptation.

In 2010 a 45 year old Christopher Evan Welch was interviewed. Going simply from the voice, there is nothing there that says this man can execute a pitch-perfect 11 year old voice. At best, Christopher Evan Welch’s voice in 1993 would be a bit higher pitched, but still very much the voice of a man. Speaking of interviews, from my research there is no interview available which has Christopher Evan Welch mentioning or referring to voicing Tails. Granted, he was never asked about it, but he also never spoke of the role. Even vintage articles do not mention the cartoon series. The only time Christopher Evan Welch and Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog have been mentioned in the same place are on IMDB and on SEGA and Sonic fan wikis, which surely got their information from IMDB.

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Here is my theory: Christopher Evan Welch and the Christopher Welch credited as the voice of Tails are two different people. One, Christopher Evan Welch, is an esteemed stage actor with an impressive career that began in Seattle in the early 90′s and moved to New York City in the late 90′s. From there, Christopher Evan Welch made his screen debut in the 1999 series Third Watch, playing the character Tom in the episode “History of the World”. From there, he grew as a film and television actor and has left an impressive legacy as an actor. A legacy, however, that does not include voicing Tails in 1993′s Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog.

Christopher Welch, meanwhile, was around the age of 11 in 1993. He is either from around Burbank, California or the British Columbia area. He landed the role of Tails and recorded the voice in either 1992 or 1993, received his paycheck, and went on with his life. Like many child actors who had few roles, he has since left acting and is doing something else entirely. Christopher Welch likely does not remember much from playing the role of Tails, and if he does it is nothing more than a fuzzy funny memory of his childhood past. He doesn’t care enough to update IMDB or reach out to fans. In 1995/1996 DIC Entertainment produced Sonic Christmas Blast, and due to a three year difference and puberty, the voice of Tails was taken over by Chris Turner. Interesting to note, Chris Turner as well as several other DIC actors and staff were from British Columbia. Chris Turner was a boy around the age of 11 at the time of recording Tails.

An IMDB page for Christopher Welch was created, likely by a fan or the creator of the Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog IMDB page, crediting the name to the series. When Christopher Evan Welch began acting in 1999, Christopher Evan Welch’s IMDB page mistakingly used Christopher Welch’s page and began adding the (at the time) smalltime screen actor’s roles. Given Christopher Evan Welch’s first role was in Third Watch, the actor’s page may have been made when Third Watch appeared on IMDB. As evidenced by Christopher Evan Welch’s IMDB page, he and his agent did not update the profile information, which leads me to think he did not pay much attention to the page. Details like birthdate, birthplace, and a bio were lacking before Christopher Evan Welch’s passing. As such, a credit for a kid’s cartoon series in 1993 remained attached to Christopher Evan Welch’s name.

I’ve tastefully reached out to several people who knew Christopher Evan Welch asking if he played the role, and should I hear anything I will update accordingly. As for now, I’ll leave the original news post in place and leave this speculation as speculation. Regardless, a talented man passed away. The question is, does his work include a role notable to SEGA fans?

Comments:

  • Shigs says:

    Great sleuthing Barry!

  • furrykef says:

    Thank you for this. I had independently come to the same realization but I had no obvious means of proving it, and it was driving me crazy. Now I have somewhere to point to.

  • mercatfat says:

    “Here is my theory: Christopher Evan Welch and the Christopher Welch credited as the voice of Tails are two different people.”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Screen_Actors_Guild#Unique_stage_names

    If you’re in the actors union, you cannot use the exact same name as another union actor. Living or dead. Hence why Michael J. Fox has that middle initial. It isn’t just to sound cool.

    It’s also almost certainly why there’s that “Evan” in Christopher Evan Welch. Christopher Welch was simply already in the registry of names.

  • TheGameCollector says:

    Perhaps someone could ask Jaleel White if he remembers who the other Chris Welch was? I mean people in the Sonic community have been able to reach out to all kinds of people with questions.

  • Billy Bittner says:

    Hey guys, you should thank me for pointing this out in The Sonic Stadium.

  • Damien says:

    The voice of Tails was recorded in Vancouver by a then 10 year old actor named Christopher (Steven) Welch. He had a short but prolific career working mostly in commercials. He stopped acting around the age of 13 and is now a sales rep for a food distributor in Vancouver, BC.

    • Barry the Nomad says:

      Hi Damien, very informative stuff! If I may ask, how did you come across this info? We’d be interested in reaching out to Christopher for an interview or a comment.

    • Damien says:

      Hi Barry, He’s been a close friend of mine since we were kids. We have been aware of the mistake in crediting Christopher Evan Welch for quite some time. He is amazed there is so much interest here. Not sure if he would want to do an interview. Maybe a comment here though…..Chris?? Anything to add?

    • Barry the Nomad says:

      Thanks for following up Damien, if Chris wants to leave a message here or via email at http://segabits.com/contact/ we’d love to hear his thoughts on recording the voice, thanks!

  • Christopher Welch says:

    Hi Barry,
    My name is Christopher Stephen Welch and I was indeed the voice of tails for 65 episodes back in 1993.
    I did a lot of television commercials as a child and went to an audition for this part and landed it.
    It was the only voice work that I ever did.

    It was recorded in Koko production and sound studios in vancouver BC.
    I never worked side by side with Jaleel white but I did work with Gary Chalk (grounder) and Philip Hayes (scratch) as well as Long John Baldery (dr robotnic)
    Paul Quinn directed us in the vancouver studios.

    It was a great opportunity and something that I remember fondly. I was 10yrs old when we worked on and recorded these episodes.

    As mentioned above Damien is a friend of mine and we always found it strange that everywhere online Christopher Evan Welch was credited with this work.

    I am shocked that there is so much interest in this and was shocked at the length and depth of this article that you wrote.

    Thanks for your interest!!
    It brought a smile to my face!

    -Chris

    • Barry the Nomad says:

      Hi Chris, I really appreciate the speedy and detailed reply!

      Very interesting to learn more about the recording process, I knew Jaleel recorded separately but never knew much from the Vancouver side of things. Great to hear it was such a positive experience and that you are well!

      I’ll admit, this article was far more in depth than I initially planned. The crediting of Christopher Evan Welch didn’t seem correct at the time, and I guess it took me down the rabbit hole. Your appearance here really helps tie up the loose ends though, and again thank you for replying.

      I was 9 at the time the series aired, so Tails and Sonic were among my childhood heroes (along with the Ghostbusters and local sports stars), so I really mean it when I say thank you for your work on the series! It meant a lot to 9 year old me, and it’s even cooler knowing Tails was voiced by somebody around my age at the time.

      Take care!
      -Barry

  • Billy says:

    Well guys, it seems the theory I had before SEGAbits posted this is actually true……

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