Edward Bernard Collins (January 30, 1883 – September 2, 1940) was an American actor, comedian and singer. He is best remembered for voicing Dopey in Disney’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937) and for portraying Tylo The Dog in the Shirley Temple film The Blue Bird (1940).
He began working in vaudeville in 1905 and started working in burlesque around 1925. An animator for Walt Disney Productions saw him in a burlesque show and suggested that Disney hire him as a live-action reference model for Dopey in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937). In the film, Dopey is clumsy and mute, with Happy explaining that he has simply “never tried”. In the movie’s trailer, Walt Disney describes Dopey as “nice, but sort of silly”. In addition to providing Dopey’s vocalizations, Collins also recorded sneezing sounds for the film’s chipmunk and squirrel characters. After completing his work for the film, Disney wrote a letter to the casting director of 20th Century-Fox and Collins was put under contract to the studio. Collins appeared in twenty-five films.
Next to Dopey, Collins’ most-beloved role is that of Tylo, a dog who is magically transformed into a human, in The Blue Bird (1940). Upon being transformed, Tylo follows his mistress Mytyl (Shirley Temple) on a quest to find the famed “Bluebird of happiness”. Collins’ interpretation of Tylo is that of an easily spooked, but loyal companion who will do anything for those he loves. He died of a heart attack on September 2, 1940, just weeks after the premiere of his last film The Return of Frank James.