About "These Are Their Stories"

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Steve Zirnkilton: The “Voice” of Law & Order

photo imdb.com
Have you ever wondered about the guy who voices all the introductions for all of the Law & Order franchise episodes? You know, “The Voice” that announces, for example, “In the criminal justice system, the people are represented by two separate yet equally important groups: the police, who investigate crime, and the district attorneys, who prosecute the offenders. These are their stories.”

That is the voice of Steve Zirnkilton, the guy who has the distinction of being listed in as “narrator” for every single episode in the franchise. His voice is heard in every episode, and there isn’t any one else in the entire Law & Order universe that can make that claim.

“The Maine Campus” (A University of Maine student publication) recently conducted an interview with Steve, titled Steve Zirnkilton: The man behind the voice. Some excerpts:

MC: What would the big break in your voiceover career be?

Zirnkilton: Well, anyone who knows anything about my career would know there's only one answer to that. That's when I had the opportunity to do "Law & Order." I played an on-camera detective in the pilot episode, and then I got a call from a big time producer who said he had something he wanted me to record. I had no idea what it would be, and he stood next to me as it was read, and he told me how he wanted it done. And that was that.

MC: You were on-screen for the pilot episode?

Zirnkilton: That's right, the first episode, actually the only episode that didn't have my intro. So that's the trivia part of it. I'm the only one who's been in every episode.

MC: The only "Law & Order" person to be on every episode? That's a pretty good claim to fame.

Zirnkilton: [laughs] Yeah, it's a good trivia question.

MC: Is that something you want to get into again, making more on-screen appearances?

Zirnkilton: It's something I've always enjoyed. I've had the opportunity to do some theater since then. It's been very enjoyable and it wasn't something our kids were interested in, so I got away from that. I did some on-camera commercials for "Law & Order," which people can see on TNT's Web site. But it's fun, and you never know.

You can read the full interview here. It's interesting to learn about the man behind the voice!

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