Walker Edmiston: Voice of Ernie the Keebler Elf and Much More

Voiceover actor (and actor actor) Walker Edmiston (1926-2007) was born on this day.

I’m not sure if I would have done a post on him, but for one cool fact: his voice for Dr. Blinky on Pufnstuff (1970) was an Ed Wynn impression and thus surely this was my first exposure to Wynn of any sort, for Wynn had died in 1966 when I was less than a year old. Later, of course, I encountered Wynn in Disney movies like Mary Poppins and Alice in Wonderland and many other places, but the way was paved by Edmiston’s impression as Dr. Blinky.

Edmiston did voices and characters on all the seminal, Sid and Marty Krofft shows, not just Pufnstuff but also The Bugaloos, Lidsville, Sigmund and the Sea Monsters, and Land of the Lost. He was never a main character, which is why I’m not certain I would have done a post on him. But he had crucial roles in other stuff.

His biggest, most widely known roles was undoubtedly Ernie, the Keebler Elf in cookie commercials.

He did the voice of Balok in the 1966 Star Trek episode “The Corbomite Maneuver”. (Child actor Clint Howard was Balok’s body). He also did the voice of Milo, the baby of Zira and Cornelius in Escape from Planet of the Apes (1971)

And he was the voice of the Zuni fetish doll that terrorizes Karen Black in Trilogy of Terror (1975).

Edmiston had hundreds of guest starring roles on tv, and other voice over credits before and after my time, through 2006.

Edmiston was from St. Louis. In the late ’40s he studied acting Pasadena Playhouse, and got his first professional credits providing voices on the kid show  Time for Beany  (a.k.a “Beany and Cecil”) starting in 1949. For a time in the 1950s and ’60s he also had his own local kids tv show in L.A.: