Movie trailers lose their most famous voice

In a world where movie trailers brazenly promise thrills and chills that the films themselves rarely provide, gravel-voiced Don LaFontaine turned the coming-attractions voiceover into an pop-culture art form. In a career spanning more than 40 years, he ably voiced ads for Coca-Cola, McDonald’s, GM, Geico (appearing on camera in a recent spot) and countless other advertisers, but he literally set the tone for thousands of modern movie trailer. His dramatic delivery and dynamic inflection made Schwarzenegger, Stallone and Willis seem more heroic, pumped up the sex appeal of Angelina Jolie and Sharon Stone, and made countless screen villains more menacing. "In a world … " was his oft-aped catchphrase. Don LaFontaine moved on to the next one yesterday at age 68. If the afterlife turns out to be less than a blockbuster, at least now they’ve got someone who knows how to make it sound divine.