Monday, May 26, 2008

"Niko" Cries About Unfair Pay

Michael Hollick, the actor who voiced Niko Bellic in GTA IV and did some motion capture work for the game, is upset that he is not getting royalties and residuals from the top-selling game. He "only" got paid $100,000 for about 15 months of work.

He's not mad at Rockstar or Take Two in specific but feels like the industry itself needs to change. The problem is that the Screen Actor's Guild doesn't really deal with residuals and royalties for video games. It's a gray area for them. There probably will be changes to this in the future, but for now, video game companies only have to pay for work rendered. Whether the game does well or not, the actors are paid the same.

Now, Hollick was paid about 50% more than the standard daily fee. And honestly, he did a great job. But he's not the reason people play the game. They could have found someone else to read the lines and it would most likely be the same. After all, you never heard the voiceover guy for the main character in Saint's Row complain. (<-joke) I believe this is the reason that video games are such a gray area for SAG. The game drives consumers, not who the star is.

Meanwhile, Jason Zumwalt, the guy who voiced Roman, has his own little parody about not getting paid on YouTube.


aplusj said...

The Youtube thing is actually pretty funny. So how many people would have bought Halo 3 if Ben Affleck or Tom Cruise had voiced the Master Chief? This guy is just pissed because he didn't see the writing on the wall that said "hey ask for more money because GTA has had a history of making lots of money." I can do Niko's voice for cheap if Rockstar is looking.

Jester013 said...

If he didn't do any research and realize that GTA IV was going to be one of the biggest games of all time shame on him anyway.