Batman’s Alfred Pennyworth/Efrem Zimbalist, Jr remembered

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“Efrem (Zimbalist, Jr.) was such a gentleman to work with and extremely professional. It was sometimes a hectic shoot yet he always brought a lovely peace with him to the set. ” —Lindsay Wagner

The star of Broadway and television, his credits included “The FBI” and “77 Sunset Strip,” Efrem Zimbalist, Jr. had an amazing star studded career.  In fact, the gun and badge, presented to him by J. Edgar Hoover himself have been long sought items by the Smithsonian Institution.

What many may not realize, except for fans of the Super Hero genre and animation is that Zimbalist was the voice of Alfred Pennyworth, Batman’s trusted butler and mentor, in both the original and following reincarnations of the popular Daytime animated series “Batman: The Animated Series” for six seasons.  Other noted daytime series voice appearances include King Arthur in “The Legend of Prince Valiant”, Mace Malone in the series “Gargoyles”, Justin Hammer and Firepower in “Iron Man”, Dr. Otto Octavius in “Spider-Man” and finally, resurrecting the character of Alfred Pennyworth in both “Superman” and the popular multi-super hero series favorite “Justice League.”

The son of two legendary musical talents, the violinist Efrem Zimbalist and the operatic soprano Alma Gluck, Efrem Jr. grew up surrounded by a love of music.  Eventually, Zimbalist crossed over from music to theatre as a co-producer of Gian Carlo Menotti’s operatic double bill, “The Medium” and “The Telephone,” on Broadway. Their critical and commercial success led to Zimbalist co-producing the Broadway production of Menotti’s next opera, “The Consul,” which garnered many awards including the Pulitzer Prize.

Zimbalist Jr recounted his amazing journey in an acclaimed literary memoir entitled “My Dinner of Herbs.”


Images: Header – Efrem Zimbalist, Jr. as Alfred Pennyworth. Bottom.) Efrem Zimbalist, Jr. with friends and fellow Authors Carl Reiner, Carol Channing and Rose Marie. Clip below: From The New Batman