Who Does the Voice of Shrek? Everything You Need to Know About Mike Myers

Legendary actor, comedian, and filmmaker Mike Myers was one of Hollywood’s most successful comedians in the 1990s and 2000s. His illustrious acting career saw him dominate screens in movies and television. His unique style of comedy endeared him to many comedy fans and helped him carve a niche for himself in the genre.

Unsurprisingly, Mike Myers was cast in the title role when DreamWorks sought a cast lead for its animated fantasy comedy series. Since the Shrek film series began in 2001, Mike Myers has voiced the bad-tempered but good-hearted ogre, Shrek, in four feature films and two television specials. Here’s everything to know about Shrek’s voice actor Mike Myers.

He Shortened His Name To Avoid Confusion With The Movie Serial Killer

Michael Myers in Halloween

The actor was born Michael John Myers in the Scarborough district of Toronto on May 25, 1963. Throughout his growing years, Myers had always used his full name. However, with the release of John Carpenter’s 1978 independent slasher film Halloween, Myers’ name became synonymous with the franchise’s serial killer, Michael Myers. Interestingly, the actor hadn’t watched the 1978 Halloween movie. However, after several jokes and references to the serial killer, Myers chose to shorten his name to “Mike.”

Mike Myers Has Multiple Citizenship

Mike Myers in The Pentaverate

Born in Toronto, Canada, Mike Myers is a citizen of the country. His parents, Alice “Bunny” E. (née Hind) and Eric Myers, were British immigrants from London, England, and World War II veterans. This also makes the actor British by parentage. In addition to his Canadian and British citizenship, Mike Myers is also a citizen of the United States. So far, Myers has been able to balance his love for each country, depending on his area of interest. 

Mike Myers’s favorite sports team is the Toronto Maple Leafs (NHL), and he is open about being a loyal fan of the hockey team. However, when it comes to soccer, Myers supports Liverpool Football Club. Besides enjoying their gameplay, both his parents were born in Liverpool, and several generations of his family have lived in the city. He has also admitted he supports England during the FIFA World Cup.

He First Appeared Onscreen At Age 2

Mike Myers in Wayne's World

Mike Myers’ career can rightly be said to have begun at age 2. Although his earliest screen appearances were in TV commercials, it gave him the confidence and composure to pursue acting as a career. Besides his TV commercial appearance at 2, he shared the screen with the late actress and comedian Gilda Radner in a commercial for British Columbia Hydro at age 12. 

He Joined The Second City After Graduating High School

Mike Myers in The Love Guru

Myers had completed his final papers around 9 AM and went in for the audition at noon. His talent and performance thrilled the casting director that Mike Myers was hired to be a member of the Canadian touring company The Second City by 3 PM on the same day. From The Second City, Myers developed an immeasurable love for improv comedy. In 1985, he moved to the UK and continued performing improv comedy at clubs. Myers later co-founded London’s The Comedy Store Players.

Mike Myers Made His Saturday Night Live Debut In 1989

Mike Myers in Saturday Night Live

With his success, talent, and experience in improv comedy, Mike Myers auditioned for the NBC sketch comedy variety show Saturday Night Live in 1988. He was hired and made his first appearance on the show on January 21, 1989. Myers quickly rose in popularity among the show’s viewers and co-stars. He has a natural gift for creating and playing oddball characters. Besides his impersonation characters, Myers had several long-running, original characters on SNL

Mike Myers’ Made His Feature Film Debut debut In 1992

Mike Myers in Wayne's World movie

By 1992, Mike Myers was already a well-known figure on SNL. One of his favorite SNL sketches was Wayne’s World. The sketch was adapted into a comedy movie of the same name. Co-starring alongside his SNL colleague, Dana Carvey, the actors led the cast of the 1992 Wayne’s World. The movie also co-starred several other SNL stars and grossed $183.1 million from a $20 million production budget. Its 1993 sequel, Wayne’s World 2, did not gross as high as its predecessor but was moderately successful at the Box Office.

Universal Pictures Sued Mike Myers For US$3.8 Million

Mike Myers in The Cat in the Hat

The lawsuit was initiated in 2000, with Universal Pictures suing for damages after Mike Myers backed out of a contract. Throughout the 1990s, after Myers’s 1992 feature debut, most of the movies he had starred in were commercial successes. With the success of the SNL-based Wayne’s World, Universal Pictures signed a US$20 million contract for Myers to make a movie about another of his SNL characters, Dieter. 

Although initially committed to the contract and had written the screenplay for the movie, Mike Myers chose it was best to abandon the movie than give audiences a half-baked film. I’m an interesting turn of events; Mike Myers countersued Universal Pictures. Several months later, both parties settled. Myers made the 2003 fantasy comedy The Cat in the Hat for Universal Pictures but it was a critical and commercial flop

He Based The Shrek Voice On His Mother’s Bedtime Story Voice

Mike Myers as Shrek

Unknown to many movie audiences, Mike Myers had earlier voiced Shrek in an accent-free voice. After it was test-screened, Myers didn’t like the character’s voice. He opted to re-record all of Shrek’s lines with a Scottish accent. Interestingly, it is the same accent and voice Mike Myers’s mother used to read bedtime stories to him as a child. While audiences would never know Shrek with an unaccented voice, there’s no denying the character’s Scottish accent makes him more adorable.

Mike Myers Has A Star On the Hollywood Walk of Fame

Mike Myers in Austin Powers

Mike Myers was presented with his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on July 26, 2002. Myers was honored in the Motion Pictures category for his contribution to American cinema. Mike Myers’ Hollywood Walk of Fame star is located at 7046 Hollywood Blvd. Similarly, he received a star on the Canadian Walk of Fame in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The actor received his star a year later, on June 25, 2003. Myers was also named an Officer of the Order of Canada in 2017 by Governor General David Johnston.

He Has Been Married Twice

Mike Myers was first married to actress and comedy writer Robin Ruzan. The couple had met in Chicago at a hockey game. They married on May 23, 1993. They were married for 13 years before their divorce on August 9, 2006. The marriage did not produce any children. In the same their divorce was finalized, Myers began dating Kelly Tisdale. The couple dated for four years before getting married in a secret ceremony on November 22, 2010. Mike Myers and Kelly Tisdale have three children, with Myers becoming a father at age 48. If you enjoyed reading about Mike Myers, read about the acclaimed director Yorgos Lanthimos.

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