Blizzard Entertainment to cast new WoW voice actors from NYC?

Well, at least according to this YouTube vid-maker, they are:

Normally I wouldn’t take such a piece of video from an account that was created just days before a video is uploaded as truth, but just as I had to click on the April Fools’ Day “black Star Wars” video, I had to check out this story about the World of Warcraft actors because I’ve been a voice actor fan ever since I was a young geek in Southern California.

Living that close to the Hollywood movie and TV machine, I got to attend a lot of voice acting panels when I went to anime conventions and actually got to know some of them better as people rather than “celebrities.” When I moved to New York City, I found that though the scene was a little different, the people were the same: hard workers who had a talent for sounding like something other than what they appeared to be.

And to be perfectly honest, I ended up working with many voice actors from both coasts and Texas in my roles as a journalist and as a guest coordinator for two anime conventions, so my perspective when I see a video like this may be a little different from any other person’s.

The thing that struck me was vid-creator Mr Oilsoap‘s claim that all of the Hollywood voice actors are professional actors who work within a union while actors in New York and Toronto, Canada are not. I can definitely tell you that over a decade of attending anime voice over panels has taught me that even Hollywood has had its variances regarding the employment of union actors versus non-union actors in a production; try getting California voice actors Steve Blum (Spike Spiegel from “Cowboy Bebop”) and David Lucas (Onizuka from “Great Teacher Onizuka”) in the same room at one time.

The other claim was that the Hollywood actors were “recognizable to anyone who watches films or TV,” and I have to add that it’s probably only a voice actor fan or geek like me who would know or care that the voice of Prince Kael’thas Sunstrider in Warcraft III and The Burning Crusade expansion is none other than Quinton Flynn, the voice of Iruka in “Naruto” and “Naruto Shippuden” or that Debi Mae West is not only Maiev Shadowsong in Warcraft III and The Burning Crusade but more importantly, is Meryl Silverburgh from the Metal Gear Solid games.

Still, it was an interesting vid, so I showed it to an old contact of mine… and the response I got surprised me.

My source within the industry wasn’t surprised that I’d seen the vid because it was something that had come to his/her attention as well along with a Playbill.com notice from a reputable casting firm in New York looking for:

Actors ages 25-55 years old to voice various roles for World of Warcraft video game. Actors must be skilled in accents — especially British and New York — among others.

“We’re not entirely sure of the details ourselves, but it just looks like a general WoW casting call. WoW adds content all the time. Everyone has been attempting to reach their various counterparts for confirmation,” my source said, adding, “To be fair, It’s not unusual for the actors to be the last to know.”

Why such a claim would surface when prominent WoW blogs like WoW.com and MMO-Champion.com haven’t picked up this story smacks of something fishy, and you can be assured that I’m going to try and get to the bottom of this.

Special thanks go out to Mattias, a human paladin, and Korixa, a gnome warlock, from the Guardians of Fire on the Elune U.S. server for additional research and support for this article.

Posted on May 6, 2010 at 06:53 by Trisha Lynn · Permalink
In: Games: MMORPGs and Text-Based RPGs, News, The Internet is Wrong—Again · Tagged with: , , , ,

One Response

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  1. Written by FritoKAL
    on 2010-05-06 at 14:48
    Permalink

    WoW's got a big new expansion coming up with a ton of new NPC's. Which would easily explain the casting call. Lots and lots of new content, requiring lots and lots of brand new voices.

    The new expansion is adding two new playable races. One of those – Goblins – have a distinctive New York/Philly accent. The other, Worgen, are basically werewolves with a Victorian bent. Together, they explain the request for accents.

    The video itself seems to be full of a huge amount of speculation. Adding is not the same as changing, and as you noticed, some of the claims in the video are simply ridiculous.

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