Tristan D. Lalla is a star of stage, screen, and game. His video game voice-acting portfolio includes Far Cry 2, Deus Ex Human Evolution, Rainbow Six: Siege — and, most notably, the slave-turned-pirate Adéwale in Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag and its sequels and DLC. But both Tristan and Adéwale had to grow into their roles: Tristan overcome both a speech disorder and shyness to become an actor, and Adéwale was originally from Martinique until Tristan invested his Trinidadian heritage into the character.
In this interview, Tristan shares family and teachers helped him overcome his personal challenges and become an actor; how a stage actor broke into the video game industry, and how being a gamer himself informs his performances; what it’s like to be motion-captured into a game and then to play a game that he’s in; the importance of representation in games, even when gamers can’t see the voice actors; whether directors should take an actor’s personal history and experiences into consideration when casting; and why video games should tackle difficult topics such as slavery.
Stream the audio edition of this interview below or from Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Amazon Music, Overcast, Pandora, Pocket Casts, iHeartRadio, TuneIn, RadioPublic, or the Internet Archive. Click past the jump for his demo reel and for links to resources mentioned in this episode.
Links mentioned in this episode:
- Tristan D. Lalla
- Assassin’s Creed’s Adéwale wiki entry
- Zoom H4n Pro recorder
- 10 awesome black voice actors in video games (hat tip to Spawn On Me)
- Other interviews:
- Ubisoft interviews Tristan about Adéwale (Dec 2013)
- Loomer’s Assassin’s Creed channel interviews Tristan (Jan 2014)
- Vibe interviews Tristan (Mar 2014)