Next week, Beyond: Two Souls comes highly anticipated and exclusively to the PlayStation 3. David Cage’s follow-up to the successful and somewhat polarizing title Heavy Rain is the first of its type to star two major Hollywood actors in Willem fucking Dafoe (that’s how he should be billed) and Ellen Page. Thanks to the power of games, you would be damned to tell the difference in their digitized versions from the real human beings, a point Ellen Page was quick to make regarding The Last of Us
This got myself and anyone else with a creative and business sense thinking “who is next?” This being NSFW Gamer, it gives us a perfect opportunity to stare at photos of women with true acting ability and determine exactly who should be the next leading lady in a high profile video game. Try to do all of this while not imagining Willem Dafoe staring at you in condescension and pity.
Getting back to business, once Beyond moves a couple million copies at a relatively modest budget of 20 million Euro (about $27 million), this should open a few eyes at big gaming studios. It is also going to lead to a glut of shit games where big names are attached to games in the hope that the mere mention of Channing Tatum is enough to sell a game. Spoiler: it is not.
That is the reason I am making these suggestions you see below. While everyone’s idea of what “sexy” is will always be subjective and flame-inducing, I am taking into account actresses that can actually, how do you say, act. Motion capture has become something of a standard practice for long form drama in video games, resulting in stealth icons Big Boss and Sam Fisher getting their iconic respective voices of David Hayter and Micheal Ironside replaced with people who can both move and speak the part.
Let’s get down to it, boppers.
My first choice is both an easy one and a longshot. Anyone who watched a single episode of Alias during its five seasons knows that Garner is capable of everything you could possibly need in a game. On top of previously voicing her role in the PlayStation 2 adaptation of the show, she displayed a wealth of emotional range as well as perfectly enunciating foreign accents from around the world in her role as Sydney Bristow.
Alias, however, began in 2001, long before Garner was married and had three children. She has not taken on nearly as many physical roles as of late, but thanks to green screening and the talent of animators and graphic designers, any stage can be transformed into a skyline. If the project were smart and needed a woman capable of pulling off everything at once (and it should), Jennifer Garner would be my number one pick to see as the star of a game.
Word association: Buffy, Catwoman, Wet. Some of you with pre-existing erections will burst at the image you have just created, but it turns out that they all stem from Boston native Eliza Dushku. Best known as blue-collar rogue slayer Faith on Buffy the Vampire Slayer and its spinoff Angel, Dushku moved on to other TV shows as well as voice work in Saints Row 2, Fight Night Champion and the tepidly received shooter Wet. As if those accolades were not enough, she added her name to the list of ladies who have voiced Selina Kyle in the animated Batman: Year One.
More than just playing the part she is given, Dushku has been hands-on in the past with her creative endeavors. She co-created Dollhouse with Joss Whedon and visited Albania to shoot a documentary for the Travel Channel. It is not very difficult to imagine her kicking the shit out of some poor sap in a game, but this time it needs to be a total package.
Odds are you have seen Laura Dern in something. Blue Velvet, Jurassic Park, Wild at Heart, Jurassic Park III and many different guest spots on TV. She has a wide range of abilities and if anything, has only gotten better with age. While it was not renewed due to low ratings, her role on HBO’s Enlightened earned her a second Golden Globe along with her supporting role in Recount.
Truly, though, it is that hellspawn of a facial structure that I want to see in all of its motion captured glory. Dern has the ability to contort her jaw in a way that should only be reserved for the depths of a Diablo III boss battle and were she to be cast in some kind of villainous role inside a game, players everywhere would instantly recognize the lady behind the lecherous lips. Make this happen, Capcom, and it will get you out of financial trouble.
If there is a woman who can pull off everything needed in a AAA video game production and has all the credentials and experience as is, it’s Zoe Bell. A veteran of four Quentin Tarantino films and Fallout: New Vegas, the Kiwi Amazon is easily the most well-known stuntwoman in all of acting. Her climb to the top of the mountain was profiled in the incredible documentary Double Dare.
I would be hard pressed to find a genre that Bell would not excel at when it comes to acting in a game. Hell, if Tarantino ever does retire from filmmaking and decides to make a game, he could easily put Zoe Bell in the lead role and oh my God this is the greatest fucking idea I’ve ever had. Somebody email this to him right now.
So you aren’t a WWE fan, or even a fan of pro wrestling. Not to worry. AJ Lee has the acting chops and geek credentials to win over even the most obnoxious jerkoff who drunkenly spouts “wrestling is fake” at the slightest provocation. Her segments on WWE programming over the past year and a half should have earned her an Emmy nomination, and getting the shit knocked out of you on a semi-daily basis is more than enough to qualify you as being up to the physical task.
AJ also happens to be one of the most avid gamers on the roster and was the first in years to finally beat Mark Henry at their own video game. Still not enough? She’s going to be in the WWE/Scooby Doo crossover next year. If you don’t like Scooby Doo, you are an asshole and dead to me.
If it turns out I have missed a prominent actress, I am sure you can and will let me know in the comments below. Cheers, folks!