Thursday, September 3, 2009

Modern Warfare 2's Keith David talks voice acting

Thanks to GameSpot, we've got a nice interview with Keith David, who as reported earlier will be lending his voice to Modern Warfare 2.

GameSpot: I guess the first question with Modern Warfare 2 is, how did you get involved in the project?
Keith David: Somebody asked me.

GS: So they wanted Keith David, specifically?
KD: Yeah.

GS: When did you actually record your vocal sessions?
KD: I'm still working on it. We still have one or two more sessions to go.

GS: So you're still recording?
KD: You know, what happens is, we go in, we do some, and then they fit it into the game. Then we go back and, if we have to, do something over. But we save the explosive stuff for last, the heavy battle stuff.

GS: So you kind of start off with your basic dialogue and then get into the actual bloody mayhem Black Hawk Down kind of thing?
KD: Yeah.

GS: So what's the name of the character you play?
KD: I'm playing a commander, but forgive me if I don't remember his name right this second.

GS: So you're playing a US commander?
KD: Yes.

GS: Is it a major role?
KD: Well, I haven't seen the whole game yet. But I believe it's a pretty major role. I start training the player and then we take the player into battle. So, I think it's pretty major.

GS: How many lines do you think you recorded for the game?
KD: Oh, my God. Put it this way, I still have 150 lines more to go.

GS: So how many hours do you think that would translate into?
KD: I'm sure all wrapped and done, it'll be 10 hours.

GS: That's just one character, right?
KD: Right.

GS: Were you a fan of the Call of Duty series before?
KD: My son is.

GS: So you'd seen it before.
KD: As I was telling Keith [Jr.], I am so wonderfully impressed with the quality of the graphics. I have been in animation for a while now, voicing animation. One of the things that made me want to be an actor was cartoon voices and narration. So I've been watching cartoons for over 50 years, and I marvel at the way CGI has come in and turned things around.
Now, you know as well as I do, the gaming industry has surpassed, in some way, the movie-making industry as far as first-day bankability. I don't know of a film yet that has made a $150 million on the first day, as some of these games have. Well, at least one of them, Halo 3, has. I don't know of another film that has even come close to that.

GS: Well, they're already saying Modern Warfare 2 might be the biggest-selling game of all time.
KD: Yeah. It's huge. And as such, what I absolutely adore about [Infinity Ward producer] Keith Arem and his work and his team is that they're painstaking. This game looks incredible. I don't play these games and it makes me want to play because it's so exciting. There's always something happening. I'll watch the situations that the player's getting ready to go in and it's like, "Holy s***!"

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