Samuel E. Wright, Voice of Sebastian in ‘The Little Mermaid’, Dies Aged 74

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The tragic news has just come in that Samuel E. Wright, the man who performed the voice of Sebastian in Disney’s The Little Mermaid, has died at the age of seventy-four…

And already, so many heartfelt tributes and condolences have been pouring in for the late actor.

Samuel E. Wright was born in Camden, South Carolina, in 1946…

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And he eventually made his way into the entertainment industry when he landed on Broadway in the original 1971 cast of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Jesus Christ Superstar.

He went on to originate the roles of William in The Tap Dance Kid and Mufasa in The Lion King

Both of which he was nominated for a Tony Award for best featured actor in a musical.

In between, Wright made a slew of appearances on TV shows over the course of the ’70s and ’80s…

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Which included his television debut on 1976’s Ball Four, All My Children, and The Cosby Show.

​But his most prolific role came in 1989.

He voiced Ariel’s trusty sidekick and voice of reason, Sebastian, in Disney’s The Little Mermaid – quickly becoming a staple in the world of Disney voice actors.

He would continue to lend his talents for the role in numerous video games…

As well as the TV series House of Mouse and The Little Mermaid 2: Return to the Sea.

The actor then starred in Disney’s Dinosaur in 2000…

And went on to pick up roles in popular shows such as Law and Order and Johnny Zero.

But today, on May 26th, some terribly sad news was brought to us by the town of Montgomery in New York – which is where Wright has resided for many years.

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Writing in an emotional Facebook post, the town confirmed the seventy-four-year-old’s death.
“Today, the Town of Montgomery mourns the loss of Sam Wright. Sam was an inspiration to us all and along with his family established the Hudson Valley Conservatory.”

It went on:

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“Sam and his family have impacted countless Hudson Valley youth always inspiring them to reach higher and dig deeper to become the best version of themselves. On top of his passion for the arts and his love for his family, Sam was most known for walking into a room and simply providing PURE JOY to those he interacted with. He loved to entertain, he loved to make people smile and laugh and he loved to love.”

“As we say goodbye to a pillar in our community and ask everyone to share a memory and help us celebrate the life of this great man.”

The actor’s cause of death has not yet been confirmed.

Rest in Peace, Samuel E. Wright.

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Our deepest thoughts and condolences go out to his family during this terrible time.