Have you ever wondered who actually voices those strange, yellow-skinned characters? The Simpsons was cast in 1987; many of the actors worked on The Tracy Ullman Show, where the Simpsons shorts first appeared. Julie Kavner and Dan Castellaneta were approached first to voice the roles of Marge and Homer Simpson. Both Smith and Cartwright originally auditioned for Bart and Lisa respectively; however, the producers ended up giving each the opposite role they had auditioned for. Shearer and Azaria eventually joined the cast full time when the show was eventually commissioned as a series. Throughout the series' run, numerous pay disputes between the actors and the producers has put the future of the show at risk (see below).


See below for photo references
Dan Castellaneta
Julie Kavner
Nancy Cartwright
Yeardley Smith
Hank Azaria
Harry Shearer
Homer Simpson, Barney Gumble, Krusty the Clown, Grampa, Groundskeeper Willie, Mayor Quimby, Sideshow Mel, Itchy, Hans Moleman, Kodos, Gil, Poochie, Squeaky-Voiced Teen, Blue Haired Lawyer, Mr. Teeny
Marge Simpson, Patty and Selma Bouvier
Bart Simpson, Nelson Muntz, Todd Flanders, Ralph Wiggum, Kearney
Lisa Simpson
Apu Nahasapeemapetilon, Moe Szyslam, Chief Wiggum, Lou, Carl, Dr. Nick, Comic Vook Guy, Snake, Kirk Van Houten, BUmblebee Man, Superintendent Chalmers, Cletus, Professor Frink, Dredrick Tatum
Mr. Burns, Waylon Smithers, Ned Flanders, Princiapl Skinner, Reverend Lovejoy, Otto, Dr. Hibbert, Kent Brockman, Jasper, Lenny, Rainier Wolfcastle, Scratchy, Kang, Herman, Judge Snyder
Information retrieved from: http://animatedtv.about.com/od/voiceactors/tp/The-Simpsons-Voices.htm


Each actor was initially paid $30,000 per episode. However, in 1998 the actors demanded a pay increase which put stress on the relationships between Fox executives and the actors. In fact, Fox even cast new voices to replace the original actors before the dispute was eventually ended with each actor earning $125,000 per episode. Further pay disputes occurred frequently throughout the series in 2004, and then again in 2008. The most serious pay dispute occurred in 2011 when Fox announced that, at the actors current salary, the show was no longer profitable and the continuity of the series was in jeopardy. As a result, all cast and crew members agreed to a 45% pay cut, which ensured the series would continue for another two seasons. (Information retrieved from:http://www.guardian.co.uk/tv-and-radio/2011/oct/05/future-simpsons-doubt-pay-dispute)

Photo References

Dan Castellaneta - http://muppet.wikia.com/wiki/Dan_Castellaneta
Julie Kavner - http://www.starpulse.com/Actresses/Kavner,_Julie/gallery/SGG-073053/
Nancy Cartwright - http://www.tvrage.com/person/id-214/Nancy+Cartwright
Yeardley Smith - http://prowrestling.about.com/od/photogalleries/ig/The-Chaperone-Photo-Gallery/Yeardley-Smith.htm
Hank Azaria - http://www.fandango.com/hankazaria/filmography/p3056
Harry Shearer - http://siyanor.com/682_Harry-Shearer/