Let’s get something straight, the Grand Theft Auto series has never been grounded in true realism. I mean sure, plenty of elements have been borrowed from the real world. In other words, the developers have certainly used realistic influences to create a fictional environment. So, it does come as a bit of a surprise that Rockstar took a more realistic approach when designing the latest title in the series, Grand Theft Auto 5. Of course, there will be plenty of satire and comedy I’m sure. It turns out though, that the company used real gang members as voice actors.
That’s right, they didn’t want some young shmuck from the valley voicing an on-screen gangster. Instead, Rockstar turned to the real thing. It looks like the idea panned out too, because some of the voice actors apparently made the recordings more realistic by lending a more accurate approach.
While speaking to WGN, the game’s lead writer and producer “Lazlow” Jones spoke up about the idea of using authentic gang members. According to him, a lot of the game’s voiceover work was acquired by traveling to various houses and recording subjects who talked like they would in real life.
“We get these guys in to record the gang characters because we don’t want a goofy L.A actor who went to a fancy school trying to be a hard gang member. There’s nothing worse than that, so just go find the terrifying people and say ‘can you come in here please?'”
“They look at the lines and say, ‘I wouldn’t say that,’ so we say, ‘OK, say what you would say.’
“There’s a lot of sessions where we would just throw the script on the floor. ‘This is is irrelevant, let’s just work on something real.'”
Pretty cool shit. If you want to hear the discussion, hit up the WGN link in the sources below.