Ask a Casting Director

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Ask a Casting Director

I've cast hundreds of computer games and directed thousands of actors. Voice acting is much more demanding than voice overs. Happy to help anyone interested.

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Latest Activity: Oct 29, 2018

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Get Skype, Yousendit and FTP

Started by Lani Minella. Last reply by Lani Minella Jan 31, 2012. 2 Replies

Character demo for games, cartoons etc

Started by Sini Manner. Last reply by Lani Minella Nov 15, 2011. 5 Replies

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Sound better at Voice Over Essentials

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Comment by Bobbin Beam on May 23, 2008 at 5:11pm
Lani,
Thanks for inviting me here. I'm looking forward to being part of this group!
Comment by Julie Williams on May 23, 2008 at 12:22pm
Hi Lani,
Great thread. Thanks for being there!
Julie
Comment by Eric Morgan on May 23, 2008 at 10:22am
Lani,

Thank you for taking the time to answer our questions here. Your input is greatly appreciated. My question is: what is the best way to practice these types of reads? I ask this because, unlike commercials or other things, the scripts are not that easy to come across. This type of work, along with anime, is something that I would love to do, but I don't get auditions for this type of work from any of my agents. Thanks for your help.

Eric
Comment by Amy Taylor on May 23, 2008 at 4:27am
Lani, thanks for the invite. Your first post was very insightful. I think I fall into that "used to getting a lot of copy into a :30" category. I gotta slow down!
Comment by Penny Abshire on May 22, 2008 at 11:32pm
Thanks for the invite to your group! You know, we really need to have lunch some day! Maybe we can arrange that sometime when we have extra time on our hands - Ha!

Penny

Penny
Comment by Joe J Thomas on May 22, 2008 at 10:48pm
Hi Lani,

Thanks much for the invite to your group ;-)

Lots of "golden nuggets" in your post below. Spot on about Acting, Improv, and the presentational radio tone. I know going from presentational to conversational is a tough nut to crack for a lot of radio pros.

There's no substitute for a solid acting background. I keep my edge honed and develop new characters thru weekly improv performances with the LA Connection. It's amazing how often the skills learned there come in handy in a session...

Well, enough babbling from me... Just happy to be here!
Joe J Thomas
JoeActor.com
Comment by Lani Minella on May 22, 2008 at 9:35pm
So often voice people are good at talking but not voice acting. Yes, it helps to have taken an improv or drama class, but there's a lot more to voice acting than reading copy with feeling. In games and other genres which are outside of commercials and movie trailers, our voice has to put the action in an otherwise less detailed representation of our character on screen.
Radio Pukers and Announcers have a hard time breaking their stride and learning how not to over-articulate or sound like a car salesman.
As a voice actor you have to put the action along with all the nuances that one would normally get from subtle mouth twitches or a sparkle in the eye----into the voice without getting as much visual support as you get from watching real actors on screen.
The first thing I notice about people who haven't really mastered voice acting is that they over articulate every word. The rattle things off way too fast, because they are used to getting a lot of copy into a 30 sec commercial.....or they're nervous and out of their comfort zone. The next thing I notice is that some people don't emphasize the right words in the sentence.
If you are voicing a character in a game that is giving the player a hint, remember that the person hearing your voice usually has no text on their computer screen to show them what you are saying. They have to understand you, the hint you are giving them, and be able to execute their mission without being confused by your delivery.
One of the best ways to think of this is as though you are talking to someone who's native language is not English. But don't talk loudly to be understood. Break the sentence up into pieces, like this:
"For some reason, our power generator went off line. (slight pause). I need you to go to the base on the north side of the island (slight pause) and find the power cell (slight pause) located in the basement (slight pause) of command central. Ask the guard at the gates where the building is when you get there."

Hope this helps and there's more where this came from.
 

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