“Wait a minute… that voice sounds really familiar.” If you play video games you’ve probably said these words at some point or another, and for good reason. More and more often, the stars of the big and small screen are finding their ways into the game screen. As the gaming industry becomes more recognized, it isn’t uncommon to find famous actors behind the microphone. Here are our top five favorite celebrity game cameos.
5. Kit Harington as Salen Kotch – Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare
It looks like Jon Snow might know something after all. Kit Harington shot to international stardom with his role on HBO’s hit series “Game of Thrones” before joining Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare as the villainous Admiral Salen Kotch. He’s certainly not the first celeb to put in an appearance in Call of Duty: everybody from Ed Harris to Ice Cube to Jeff Goldblum has had a role in the series at some point or another. Unfortunately, Infinite Warfare was met with mixed review from critics, but Harington’s performance as Kotch is one of the game’s highlights. The cold, calculating Admiral Kotch is very different from the more heroic Jon Snow, and Harington manages to pull off the tone shift expertly. Perhaps this means we’ll see him putting on his villain hat again in the future?
4. Mads Mikkelsen- Death Stranding
Okay, okay… we know that Death Stranding isn’t out yet, but if the trailer above is any indication, Mads Mikkelsen is going to be one of the best parts of the game. Mikkelsen is an expert at speaking volumes without saying a word; though he doesn’t even speak in the above trailer, we know just by watching him that this is a dangerous man.
Speculation abounds that he’ll be playing Death Stranding’s villain, which seems about par for the course. Fans will know him as the bloody-eyed Le Chiffre from “Casino Royale” and the sinister and elegant Dr. Hannibal Lecter of NBC’s “Hannibal.” It was the later role that caught the eye of Death Stranding’s creator Hideo Kojima, who cast him alongside “The Walking Dead’s” Norman Reedus and French actress Lea Seydoux. Kojima has long been known for blending video games with Hollywood cinema, and we can’t wait to see what else he has planned for Mikkelsen’s mysterious character.
3. Martin Sheen as The Illusive Man – Mass Effect 2
Is that President Bartlet in space? It sure is. Actor Martin Sheen of “West Wing” fame lent his trademark voice to the Mass Effect trilogy as The Illusive Man. Sheen plays the role perfectly as the commanding and assertive leader of Cerberus, and steals every scene he’s in. Sheen’s performance turned The Illusive Man into an iconic Mass Effect character, but he isn’t the only celeb to take to the stars. The Mass Effect cast also features killer performances from the likes of comedian Seth Green and actress Carrie Anne Moss, better known as Trinity in the “The Matrix” and more recently as Jeri Hogarth on Netflix’s hit series “Jessica Jones.” It’s a star-studded cast that will leave any sci-fi fan drooling.
2. Susan Sarandon as Granny Rags- Dishonored
Dishonored’s cast also features a fair amount of star power, but Susan Sarandon’s performance as Granny Rags stands out. Granny Rags is a blind old woman that Corvo encounters several times in his quest for revenge, with each encounter more mystifying than the last. Sarandon is a prolific, Oscar-winning actress known for her movie roles, and her experience shows. Also of note: the late, great Carrie Fisher also has a small appearance as a voice on one of the game’s propaganda loudspeakers. It’s a small cameo, but one that tugs at our heartstrings. You can hear Fisher’s voice at the 6:35 mark in the video below:
1. Ellen Page as Jodie Holmes
Ellen Page’s performance carries Beyond: Two Souls. She plays a young girl named Jodie Holmes, raised from childhood to control the burden of her supernatural powers. The game follows her from toddler to adult as she fights to survive in a world she never asked to be part of. Her chemistry with co-star Willem Dafoe, who plays a sort of foster father for Jodie, is superb and leads to many poignant moments throughout the game. Though the game itself received mixed reviews, Page’s performance stands out. Quantic Dream is known for melding games and movies, and that tradition continues in their latest game, Detroit: Become Human. Like Beyond: Two Souls, the game also features a star cast brought to life with excellent acting, gorgeous graphics, and the fluid motion capture that has come to define their games.
Pull up a chair and grab some popcorn: video games are becoming more and more mainstream, and that means we’ll be seeing some significant star power moving to video games. We can’t wait to see which celebs will turn up next.