Rockstar Uses Actual Gang Members for GTA V Voice Acting

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Father Time:

Baldr:
As a game developer I don't think it a great idea/ethical to support criminal gangs. Reformed gang members I would probably be ok with, but taking actual criminals is another.

Wouldn't this apply to anyone who wants to give gang members a job?

Hey you know that guy who played Machete? The big Mexican guy who's been in a bunch of movies (he was the bartender in Anchorman). Well he's an ex-con and now he's an actor.

Yes. He was a former con man. He turned his life around. Now he is an actor.

However based on this article these people aren't "ex" anything. They are still gang members, and chances are, most of them will still be gang members after the fact. The only difference now is that they are thugs with money.

Wolf In A Bear Suit:
I doubt they're active gang members. Otherwise the police will be looking very eagerly at the credits. Also funny how easily some Rockstar researcher can find gang members but the police can't.

Being in a gang doesn't automatically make you a criminal.
However people in gangs tend to do crimes. Finding those gang members are the problem.
You can be in a gang and miraculously not do any sort of illegal crime, and it ends up being more of a brotherhood then a "hey let's beat that fucker up" kind of deal.

Dragonbums:

Father Time:

Baldr:
As a game developer I don't think it a great idea/ethical to support criminal gangs. Reformed gang members I would probably be ok with, but taking actual criminals is another.

Wouldn't this apply to anyone who wants to give gang members a job?

Hey you know that guy who played Machete? The big Mexican guy who's been in a bunch of movies (he was the bartender in Anchorman). Well he's an ex-con and now he's an actor.

Yes. He was a former con man. He turned his life around. Now he is an actor.

However based on this article these people aren't "ex" anything. They are still gang members, and chances are, most of them will still be gang members after the fact. The only difference now is that they are thugs with money.

Everyone has to start somewhere, there had to be someone who took a chance on a criminal and gave him his first acting job.

A thought occurs, why does everyone assume they will use the money to do bad things?

What if it leads to him thinking "well I just got some money so now I don't need to rob someone tonight/sell as many drugs".

Dragonbums:

BernardoOne:

Raggedstar:
Is that...is that even legal? I'm not sure.

It's one thing to have authentic delivery and feeling for people that have lived the life, but why not reformed gang members as mentioned previously?

Of all the things the non-gaming public can get pissed off at games about, this is one of the more valid ones (if it's true in the way I'm thinking). The violence and actions in this and all other games is fake. Fantasy. But this kinda steps passed that line and has a more direct impact on real life. GTA4 didn't force that kid or anyone else to shoot people, but where are the dollars from Rockstar going to after they pay these dudes?

I'm with the sentiment of the other posters. I hope this is a joke, lie, reformed gang members, some elaborate stunt, or something else that isn't being told in this story. Not like I was going to buy GTA5 anyways, but I don't think I'm ok with this.

Of course its legal, why the hell wouldnt it be? As far as I know, voice acting is a legal job.

He meant in terms of hiring suspect criminals of varying degrees of law breaking for video game voice acting.

Again...yes. Its not illegal to employ criminals.(well, as long as they are doing non-criminal things, of course)

Strazdas:
Argument 1 agasint this:
remmeber what happened when rockstar went for realism? GTA4. yeah, i dredd this.
Argument 2 agasint this:
They may put the dialogue thats authentic there, but it would be like listening to gang members in The Wire - your hoping they shut up ASAP.
Argument 3 against this:
They are basically giving money to known criminals.
Argument 4 against this:
they are not voice actors and yet they voice act. we will have silent hill voice acting problems in a GTA game now.

Capcha: smellnig salt.
really? were throwing cocaine references already?

I know I should read the entire thread, but did some jackass really insult The Wire? That's sacrilege.

Boo friggin hoo. After reading Jacked: The Outlaw story of Grand Theft Auto, and finding out about their previous casting sessions, this is nothing. You could raise more issues about criminal Bloods ties with Death Row records, and those who were in the LAPD at the time, that's an actual entertainment based conflict of interest that you can measure the dangerous impact of. Business influence that inspired hits and killings of hip hop artists and locals or family of rivals.

Filmmakers and documentary filmers on topic have no qualms about speaking with gang members if they want the data for their works, and the houser bros cast Jenna Jameson in Vice City. This is not some major blip on the ethics radar.

yundex:

Strazdas:
Argument 1 agasint this:
remmeber what happened when rockstar went for realism? GTA4. yeah, i dredd this.
Argument 2 agasint this:
They may put the dialogue thats authentic there, but it would be like listening to gang members in The Wire - your hoping they shut up ASAP.
Argument 3 against this:
They are basically giving money to known criminals.
Argument 4 against this:
they are not voice actors and yet they voice act. we will have silent hill voice acting problems in a GTA game now.

Capcha: smellnig salt.
really? were throwing cocaine references already?

I know I should read the entire thread, but did some jackass really insult The Wire? That's sacrilege.

Your puny TV gods does not amuse me. The wire has one thing and one thing only going for it - realism. and since i dont care much for drug dealers realism, the first two seasons were quite a bore. didnt bother watching further.

Strazdas:

yundex:

Strazdas:
Argument 1 agasint this:
remmeber what happened when rockstar went for realism? GTA4. yeah, i dredd this.
Argument 2 agasint this:
They may put the dialogue thats authentic there, but it would be like listening to gang members in The Wire - your hoping they shut up ASAP.
Argument 3 against this:
They are basically giving money to known criminals.
Argument 4 against this:
they are not voice actors and yet they voice act. we will have silent hill voice acting problems in a GTA game now.

Capcha: smellnig salt.
really? were throwing cocaine references already?

I know I should read the entire thread, but did some jackass really insult The Wire? That's sacrilege.

Your puny TV gods does not amuse me. The wire has one thing and one thing only going for it - realism. and since i dont care much for drug dealers realism, the first two seasons were quite a bore. didnt bother watching further.

The first two seasons probably were the "boring" parts for those who aren't familiar with the subject matter. But what makes the authenticity matter to me in a sea of shit "gangster flicks", is probably the fact that I grew up in Baltimore and around that culture, haha.

Jesus, this thread took off.
I'm surprised at how buttmad some people have gotten about gang members earning some honest money.

yundex:

Strazdas:

yundex:

I know I should read the entire thread, but did some jackass really insult The Wire? That's sacrilege.

Your puny TV gods does not amuse me. The wire has one thing and one thing only going for it - realism. and since i dont care much for drug dealers realism, the first two seasons were quite a bore. didnt bother watching further.

The first two seasons probably were the "boring" parts for those who aren't familiar with the subject matter. But what makes the authenticity matter to me in a sea of shit "gangster flicks", is probably the fact that I grew up in Baltimore and around that culture, haha.

So you have a personal bias. Good for you. Personally i find the "culture" as depicted in the wire ugly and think it should go away.
I keep hearing how "5th season is the best and stuff" but going though 4 years of crap for one season? may not be worth it.

MrGalactus:
Jesus, this thread took off.
I'm surprised at how buttmad some people have gotten about gang members earning some honest money.

The money is the least problematic part of this thing.

I could get behind giving former gang members the job. They've proven they want to change, and they deserve the chance.

Active gang members on the other hand, have not. By giving those people the job, which they are being given because they are in a gang I might add, you are not giving them any incentive to leave. You are giving them incentive to continue being in a gang for the chance that further possibilities like this arise.

And for those who are asking how a gang member is supposed to make money if they leave, you do realise that the money a gang member makes is almost certainly through illegal, or at least unethical means right? No money is better than ill-gotten money.

Iron Criterion:
This thread is hilarious. Hold on, I'm off to make some popcorn.

Agreed, dear sir!! Save some for me :p

The GTA games went to shit when they started trying to rationalize their game with serious messages like, "Life is hard, sometimes you have to murder people to get anywhere in this world. It's unavoidable." Using gang members instead of professionals makes it seem like they're heading down that same road of "realism."

At least the guys at Volition get it. We just want to blow shit up with a panda bear tank.

ticklefist:
Using gang members instead of professionals makes it seem like they're heading down that same road of "realism."

If you want to make it believable that your character cleans up shit for a living, its better to hire someone who actually cleans up shit for a living.

I don't get why this is a bad thing, a gangbanger voicing a gangbanger makes sense. But i don't think we should get caught up in the ethics, its only a voice they're selling

Well, I have to give them points for trying to be authentic. And how knows? Maybe some gang member will use this as an opportunity to turn their life around?

...What? I can't try to be optimistic?

I'm fine with gang members making an honest buck and contributing to an artistic venture. Win-win.

Ummm, but that's the job of the professional VAs... I guess Tara Strong should stop being hired to voice kids' roles? I don't have a problem with the gang members' providing voices for GTA V, I just think the justification makes no sense.

GoaThief:
Why shouldn't they offer a legal alternative to making money? How is a person supposed to change if you don't provide a means for them to do so?

Stars like Danny Trejo seem to indicate that offering legitimate employment is potentially life changing and/or saving.

There is offering a job and there`s reinforcing their behavior. Without knowing the exact circumstances it is difficult to tell what really happen. But the whole thing really seems to be all about authenticity and not really about opportunity.

Montezuma's Lawyer:

ticklefist:
Using gang members instead of professionals makes it seem like they're heading down that same road of "realism."

If you want to make it believable that your character cleans up shit for a living, its better to hire someone who actually cleans up shit for a living.

That`s actually not true at all. If that were the case you would need a president to portray a president, a dad to portray a dad, a cop to portray a cop, an alien to play as an alien, a general to play a gener... you get the idea. Authenticity can be achieved in many ways. Using real people as actors is actually quite risky. It sometimes pays off big but can easily lead to B performances at best.

ticklefist:

At least the guys at Volition get it. We just want to blow shit up with a panda bear tank.

Who's this collective "we" you are referring to?

Also claiming that Rockstar employees endorse and even commit murders to get where they are is one of the most out there comments I've ever read on this website. Especially when simultaneously singing the praises of Saints Row.

Maiev Shadowsong:
Yeah, no.

I'd rather drug pushing pimps and thugs don't get paid out of my pocket. I'd rather they end up in prison (something I am happy to pay for) and rethink their life. Many a person lives in poverty and claws out of it without holding up cashiers or selling women into sexual slavery.

Gang members can get fucked.

When people get sent to prison in Australia, it's occasionally referred to as 'being sent to college'. Mainly because by and large, the only thing people learn in prison is how to be better criminals. Of course there are about a million different factors in this equation as there is for anything but just locking a person up and calling them naughty is a pretty poor way to fix the problem. If Rockstar hiring these guys for a couple of hours makes one of them try and quit the life; then I consider it a win.

I understand a desire to punish criminals, after all they have done wrong, but you need to temper it with programs or initiatives to give them some life skills so that despite their background they can get a job to live on. The punishment begins and ends at the prison gate.

Maiev Shadowsong:
[quote="maddawg IAJI" post="7.827502.20119413"][...]

You do a lot of crime sympathizing and not much else. If for some reason you can't find any work at all, you eat out of the bin, beg for money and find home where you can. What you don't do is steal, sell drugs and murder people. You act like it's suddenly not so bad that these people are gang members because they might have it rough. No. Living on a dollar or less a day is entirely possible (and done by many millions of people). It's difficult and as close to rock bottom as it probably gets. But it's 100% possible. If you turn to crime, you are a weak coward.

Okay, show me how. How do you live on a dollar a day? I mean, holding down a house isn't going to be possible with that sort of money, and if you're homeless in a gangland area then good luck surviving without joining one group or another pretty damn quickly.

Maiev Shadowsong:
You do a lot of crime sympathizing and not much else. If for some reason you can't find any work at all, you eat out of the bin, beg for money and find home where you can. What you don't do is steal, sell drugs and murder people. You act like it's suddenly not so bad that these people are gang members because they might have it rough. No. Living on a dollar or less a day is entirely possible (and done by many millions of people). It's difficult and as close to rock bottom as it probably gets. But it's 100% possible. If you turn to crime, you are a weak coward.

Okay, show me how. How do you live on a dollar a day? I mean, holding down a house isn't going to be possible with that sort of money, and if you're homeless in a gangland area then good luck surviving without joining one group or another pretty damn quickly.

They're doing this to be controversial. There is no need to get "real" gang members. There are enough documentaries and films and shows about gangsters for the writers to know what they would say and for the voice actors to mimic. Are they saying that the "voice of the gangs" is impossible to imitate? Then they aren't hiring the right actors. A good enough actor can mimic any background.

What's next? "For our next game, which features Russian Soldiers, we travelled to Russia to get real Russian Soldiers to record lines for us!" "Our next game has prostitutes - we tracked down some real prostitutes and got them to do voice acting!"

Their argument makes no sense at all.

Gordon_4:

Maiev Shadowsong:
Yeah, no.

I'd rather drug pushing pimps and thugs don't get paid out of my pocket. I'd rather they end up in prison (something I am happy to pay for) and rethink their life. Many a person lives in poverty and claws out of it without holding up cashiers or selling women into sexual slavery.

Gang members can get fucked.

When people get sent to prison in Australia, it's occasionally referred to as 'being sent to college'. Mainly because by and large, the only thing people learn in prison is how to be better criminals. Of course there are about a million different factors in this equation as there is for anything but just locking a person up and calling them naughty is a pretty poor way to fix the problem. If Rockstar hiring these guys for a couple of hours makes one of them try and quit the life; then I consider it a win.

I understand a desire to punish criminals, after all they have done wrong, but you need to temper it with programs or initiatives to give them some life skills so that despite their background they can get a job to live on. The punishment begins and ends at the prison gate.

I agree with you to some extent - reform should be a goal for some prisoners who are young and want reform. However, some don't want to reform. Some can't be reformed. Locking people up may not "help them" but it keeps them off the street. Sure, they'll have to be let out one day, but while they are in jail they can't commit crimes. Also, give them a long enough jail sentence, and they'll be old by the time they come out and probably not up to being in a gang (hard to be in a street gang when you're, what, 60 years old).

In the US, Crime rates are going down. They are - they're at their lowest since the 1950s and dropping all the time. One of the reasons why - hard jail time. Give a criminal 30 years in prison, and they are going to be off the street for 30 years, not committing crime for 30 years. The hard jail sentences being handed down in the US aren't helping the criminals and they are probably too harsh - but they get results. Crime is dropping, and its dropping because they're simply taking them off the street and locking them up for decade upon decade.

It's not the way I'd do it. For one, it costs way too much. It places too much power in the hands of the correctional facility. It's inhumane. But it's a solution that works, if all you care about is the reduction in crime stats. Which is what the politicians care about.

I kind of like this though. Make them work for their money rather than, I dunno, gang it away. Maybe there's a future in that. In any case I'm mostly amused by the decision and would love to hear some of these "authentic" recordings.

Psychobabble:
Sigh. Great. So Rockstar continues to support the fall of Western Civilization. Why does this not surprise me.

Simply hilarious. Because employing gangsters to do honest, paid work - when they could be out robbing houses - is supporting crime and degeneracy.

To the contrary, it is these sorts of asinine statements that we should be worried about.

...Criminals.

They are now giving criminals work for no reason.

What is wrong with you Rockstar?

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