Those of you who know me personally know the exact reasons why I wanted to get into voice acting while those of you who don\’t know me as well might still be a bit in the dark. Yes, you may read my Bio page on my site here which explains my love for voiceover and how I started in the industry, but I never really divulged as to why exactly I wanted to be a voice actor.
Well, simply put, it\’s because of The Joker
Yeah, this grinning bastard right here.
Now when I was first getting interested in voiceover, I was interested in the art, but I never really had an desire yet in learning about all of the famous established VAs already in the industry. People like Steve Blum, Rob Paulson, Jennifer Hale, and of course, Mark Hamill.
Now sadly, when Batman Animated was still airing on Cartoon Network, I never really had an interest in the show. In fact, I really disliked it. I thought the stories were dull and there just wasn\’t enough flashyness in it. I was really young and I just couldn\’t get into it. My shows were Pokemon, Digimon, stuff like that. However, I did like Star Wars back then and at the time, I had no idea that the clown prince of crime was voiced by Luke Skywalker.
Cut to many years later when one of my all time favorites shows was airing, Avatar The Last Airbender. Superb story, wonderful characters, this show is amazing. Now during book 3 of the show was when we all were finally introduced to the character, Fire Lord Ozai.
At the time, I was much more conscious of the voices behind the characters and I thought his voice sounded familiar, so I looked him up. You can imagine my surprise when I discovered that the Fire Lord was voiced my my favorite Jedi. This surprised me, I honestly didn\’t know that Mark Hamill was also an accomplished VA. My girlfriend at the time was surprised that I didn\’t know that, also pointing out that Mark also voiced the Joker back in Batman Animated. Now I was much more geeky at the time and a lover of Batman, so hearing this little VA tidbit gave me shivers.
After that day, I began my research, and by research, I mean I watched clips of Batman Animated all the time just listening to the Joker\’s wonderful performance. I was mesmerized by just how wonderful of an actor Mark Hamill was, but that was just the tip of the iceburg. My real admiration for him and The Joker came from this scene from the Batman Beyond movie, Return of the Joker.
(The actual clip starts at the 20 second mark and and at the 1:36 mark. Sorry, I couldn\’t find a clip of just the monologue)
I got busy when I watched that clip. I wanted to try and do that joker voice and perform that monologue just like he did. I really got into voiceover that day. That\’s when my interest spiked higher than a Gurren Lagann Drill. I had the Joker to thank for giving me such a fire for voice acting, I owe everything to him.
I practiced a lot though I could never really pin the voice down, never really figuring out how to pull it off. Then I actually got to see him pull off the voice in action in a behind the scene clip from a game called Darksiders. I don\’t know, but seeing him in person actually do the voice made something click in my head.
Darksiders is one of my all time favorite games, especially knowing that Mark Hamill voices a demonic black Navi. Seeing him in that clip made me really push myself and thus was born my classic demonic voice. Those of you who know me, you know what voice i\’m talking about!
Ever since then, I\’ve been refining and perfecting my voice nonstop. I\’ve added more voices and personalities to my list, but my demon voice will always been my prime voice since that\’s where I got my start. I have the Mark Hamill AKA Fire Lord Ozai AKA The Joker to thank for that.