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RIP Billie Mae Richards Of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer

Illustration for article titled RIP Billie Mae Richards Of emRudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer/em

Richards, grandmother of 12, was the voice of Rudolph in the 1964 TV special. She was often credited as "Billy" Richards, to obscure her gender. Although the specials aired for decades, she only earned residuals for three years.

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DISCUSSION

I'm trying to come up with plausible reasons to "conceal" her gender.

1. They didn't want to emasculate Rudolph

2. They didn't want to piss off male voice actors by revealing that they hired outside the boys club for a male role

That's all I have so far. Anyone else have any ideas? It's such a weird thing to do.