Laura Bailey on Halo 5 and Tales from Borderlands

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Laura Bailey grew up in the voice acting industry, starting her career as Kid Trunks from 1999’s Funimation’s Dragon Ball Z. As time went on and many amazing jobs came along, Bailey has lent her voice to over 300 projects, including some of the biggest video game franchises of all time. Having started so young with a role in a popular anime series, Bailey has managed to stay on top of the game and has not succumb to the pitfalls that plagued many who grew up in the entertainment industry. I had the pleasure of speaking with Laura Bailey and had the opportunity to ask her what kept her from turning into another Macaulay Culkin.

“I don’t do drugs… I love what I do and voice over in general is a very grounded industry. The community is very, very welcoming. The reason I stopped doing as much on-camera acting is because it can feel very… judgmental,” Bailey said with a laugh.

For those of you who are only familiar with Bailey’s voice-over work, you may not know that on top of being a fantastic voice actress, she is also stunningly beautiful. She has done on-screen acting work early in her career on Walker Texas Ranger, One Tree Hill, and currently, on Geek and Sundry’s Critical Role. She continues,”There is a feeling (about screen acting) that your appearance is all that really matters. There is something very refreshing about going into a voice acting audition. Even if you don’t get the part, you know that you didn’t get the part because you weren’t right for it based on what you did. A lot of times you go in for on-camera stuff and you lost the part because you have brown hair or because you look too similar to another actor on the show”.

More and more the line between voice acting and screen acting is merging together. Games are opting to choose voice actors that double as mocap actors and even go so far as using facial scans to capture the emotion of the voice actor. Laura Bailey has undergone this process for one of her more recent roles as Spartan Vale in the much anticipated Halo 5: Guardians.

“It was a crazy audition process. That was one of the biggest, longest audition processes I have ever done. It was full screen testing for the characters with two or three callbacks for the part and then we went down to do this full face scan where they make you sit in a chair for hours on end making different expressions and you have to hold them for about thirty seconds to a minute.”

Spending nearly half of her life in the spotlight of voice acting, Mrs. Bailey remains a very grounded artist. Perhaps some of her best and more recent work has been done with Telltale Games. Bailey plays the character Fiona in the critically heralded Tales from Borderlands game. Telltale creates interactive video game story books, and according to Bailey, the process they use is pretty unique. She tells us, “The character that you create has to be solid enough that it is universally the same so whoever is playing gets a feel for who that character is, but at the same time malleable enough that whatever the players choose, it makes them feel the character is evolving based off of their decisions.”

She goes on to describe that Telltale’s approach to writing for Tales from Borderlands was special from the beginning, ” I have never seen a more complicated script than Telltale, but they keep track of it so well and the writers and the directors on that game are just phenomenal. I am so happy to be working on that. It’s hilarious.”

Telltale Games: Tales from Borderlands is available now on Xbox, PlayStation, Steam and both Apple and Android mobile platforms.

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