Janet Waldo, Voice of Daughter Judy Jetson on 'The Jetsons,' Dies at 96
The actress also starred as Penelope Pitstop and as the title character on 'Josie and the Pussycats.'
Janet Waldo, who supplied the voice of the hip teenage daughter Judy Jetson on the space-age cartoon The Jetsons, died Sunday at her longtime home in Encino, her daughter told The Hollywood Reporter. She was 96.
Waldo's daughter Lucy Lee said that her mother had been diagnosed with a benign brain tumor in 2011 and "had been bed-bound for many months."
Waldo voiced scores of cartoon characters during her long career, including guitar-playing frontwoman Josie McCoy on Josie and the Pussycats, the always-in-danger Penelope Pitstop on The Perils of Penelope Pitstop and Wacky Races, Granny Sweet on the Precious Pupp segments of The Atom Ant Show, Morticia Addams on The Addams Family, the witch Hogatha on The Smurfs, Lana Lang on Superman and several characters on The Flintstones.
Waldo also voiced teenager Corliss Archer on the Meet Corliss Archer radio program that ran from 1943-56 and was Princess, one of the young members of G-Force, on Battle of the Planets, a U.S. adaptation of a Japanese anime series that aired in the late 1970s.
On a first-season episode of I Love Lucy, “The Young Fans,” which premiered in January 1952, Waldo portrayed a teenager who is infatuated with Ricky Ricardo (Desi Arnaz). She later appeared on The Adventures of Ozzie & Harriet and The Andy Griffith Show.
A native of Yakima, Wash., Waldo was discovered by Bing Crosby after she won a talent contest and appeared on the big screen in small roles starting in the late 1930s. She then starred opposite Tim Holt in the Westerns The Bandit Trail (1941) and Land of the Open Range (1942).
Waldo voiced Judy, the Orbit High School daughter of George (George O'Hanlon) and Jane Jetson (Penny Singleton) and the older sister of Elroy (Daws Butler), on Hanna-Barbera's The Jetsons, which played on ABC in primetime in 1962-63 and then returned for new syndicated episodes in 1985-87.
She also starred as the teenager in the 1988 TV movie Rockin' With Judy Jetson. For 1990's The Jetsons: The Movie, she voiced Judy again but was replaced by the pop singer Tiffany, which did not go over well with fans of the cartoon.
Waldo was married to the late playwright Robert Edwin Lee (Inherit the Wind, Auntie Mame).
Survivors also include her son Jonathan.