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Questions for Dominic Armato!

posted by Jake on - last edited - Viewed by 7.3K users

If you see a guy with the username "dmnkly" skulking around, it's probably Dominic Armato, (better known as) the voice of Guybrush Threepwood!

If you've got any questions for Dom or just want to say hello, drop 'em here!

Dom answers! Let's take a look...

[LIST]
[*]First round of answers! June 1st
[*]Second round of answers! June 2nd
[*]Third round of answers! June 2nd -- again!
[*]Fourth round of answers! June 3rd
[*]Fifth round of answers! June 4th
[*]Sixth round of answers! June 4th -- again!
[*]Seventh round of answers! June 5th
[/LIST]

I don't know when this will end, but that's a lot of answered questions so far! Check those to see if your question has already been answered!

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690 Comments - Linear Discussion: Classic Style
  • Further questions! (yeehhhaaarrrr!)

    1. When in the studio recording your lines, do you get to do so in a group with the other voice actors, or is everyone in their own little studio bubble and you have to do your best to make it fit with the how the scene is envisioned?

    2-3. Are you the only returning voice actor for Tales of Monkey Island, the current trailer seems to have a different actor for LeChuck than in the past. I suppose I was expecting that since the cast from Curse was brought back together for the update of Secret that naturally that might have transitioned to Tales?

    4. Off-MI-topic: Mass Effect! Cool... looking forward to 2 I would assume? Did you get a chance to read either of the two novels based around the game? The first one (Revelation) is a prequel to ME1 and there is a inbetween (Ascension), both of which I have found added to the overall experience.

    Thanks again for taking time out of what must be a hectic schedule to answer everyone's questions.

  • okay so my first MI game was CMI and about 5-6 years ago i loaned it to a friend and he lost one of the CD's. THEN, i bought the set with the first 3 monkey island games and loaned them to another friend (only after i beat all three of course)... this was about 3-4 years ago and i still havnt gotten them back yet... meanwhile hes gotten married and is about to pop out his first child. my question is this...

    do you think its a hopeless quest to get them back and how would you suggest i go about getting my copies back from him

    also have you ever played the simon the sorceror series??

  • @ZombieAtPlay said: In Rocket Power you didn't actually say any words, you just kinda mumbled. Was that easier or harder as an actor?


    Unquestionably harder. If you spew gibberish, it just sounds like gibberish. But mumbling something that sounds like actual words but is still completely unintelligible? That's tricky.

    @ZombieAtPlay said: Are you going to make your kids play the whole MI series + Tales of MI

    Has your wife played the whole series


    Despite the loving tableau of family bliss that my children chained to the floor in front of the television, eyes propped open with toothpicks would be, I don't intend to make anybody play anything. But it doesn't appear that my unwillingness to go Clockwork Orange on my kids will be the limiting factor in our household. My two-year-old has already asked to watch the trailer at least 40 times, and my wife -- whose previous gaming experience is pretty much limited to Snood and Bejeweled -- is saying she can't wait to play through them. So it looks like Family Monkey Island night is in the works.

    @ZombieAtPlay said: What other acting or voice acting jobs did you do outside of the Monkey Island games?


    There's a pretty good list over at the IMDB, which includes such highlights as when I mugged Hector Elizondo (complete with video -- shocking even to me!). Those are the big ones, with plenty of commercial work strewn throughout.

    @ZombieAtPlay said: My name is Bobbin. Are you my mother?


    For the right price, I could be.

    @ZombieAtPlay said: Do you own a chicken with a pulley in the middle? If so what uses does it have? ;)


    A tasty one.

    @ZombieAtPlay said: Since you did the voice of Largo in that 2002 April fools joke of soundbytes for the fake Monkey Island 5, I was just wondering do you think Largo could make a return in these new adventures and would you actually do the voice as well?


    No clue, but I'd love to see Largo return. If he did, though, the chances are almost nil that I'd do the voice, and that April Fools joke certainly wouldn't have any bearing on it ('specially since that wasn't particularly good!).

    @ZombieAtPlay said: I've read somewhere that there's only one guy who does like half of all Futurama voices, and many times recording episodes meant that the guy was talking by himself. So is voice acting about the ability to change your voice, or can you have a career with only one voice? Is changing your voice and inventing new voices something you can learn, or something that must come naturally?


    Billy West. Yeah, he does a bunch for Futurama. Not as many as Seth MacFarlane does for Family Guy / American Dad. But this is what I mean when I say that the people who can really do it are Jedi fricking masters. It was like that watching Tom Kane work on CMI. Okay, Tom, we need an Algerian accountant who runs away to join the circus, is 6'4", barrel0-chested, went to college in Wisconsin and had some dental work done last week. *BAM* Nails it. Of course, there are also people who build long and lucrative careers around doing one thing -- Don LaFontaine (the trailer guy), for example. But there's a common misconception that voiceover is about voice. It is, but only as a starting point. With commercial, it's about your read. Can you sell the product without sounding like you're selling the product. Can you emphasize exactly what needs to be emphasized without sounding like you're pushing. Can you convey the spirit of the product through your voice. With character, it's about... character. Take Mel Blanc. One of the classic masters of character VO. Listen to his characters -- Bugs Bunny, Elmer Fudd, Daffy Duck, Sylvester, Yosemite Sam -- their vocal quality is all very, very similar. What distinguishes them is that each one is a distinct character. The ability to bring a character to life -- the ability to act -- is infinitely more important than what that character sounds like. And like anything else, of course you can train and practice and get better at it, but you have to have a certain amount of talent for it to begin with.

    @ZombieAtPlay said: What was the most fun for you this time around, an all new Monkey Island, or recording the audio for Secret?

    Toss-up. Honestly. Bringing new life to an old classic or the excitement of exploring completely new territory? Can't be compared.

    @ZombieAtPlay said: What would you say is your favorite insult from Monkey Island? Aside from the obvious of course.


    Uh... which was the obvious, again?

    @ZombieAtPlay said: So Dom, are you doing any other projects, besides Monkey Island, at the moment?


    At the moment, no. VO's kind of taken a back seat recently, what with the moving and the kids and all that. I'd intended to kind of sit back for a few years and take a hiatus of sorts before jumping back in, and then Monkey Island suddenly reappeared and blew up that whole plan. Just when I think I'm out...

    @ZombieAtPlay said: Quick question, someone already mentioned "Plank of Love" from Monkey Island 3 but there was also a scene cut from the game before the last level, a storyboard exists for this and rumoured is that the script for this scene was done to, some even say that an old promo for Monkey Island 3 briefly shows a clip from this scene. so the question is, what the hell happened to this scene and what really happened, how did Guybrush get on the rollercoaster?


    My memory's a little fuzzy, since it would have been... 1996? 1997?... when I recorded this? But I do recall a cutscene featuring Elaine fighting off a skeletal horde while I kind of stand around, twiddling my thumbs, asking if there's anything I can do. She says no, I kind of meander about, and am then somehow shoved into the roller coaster. And that's as much of it as is still stuck in my brain. I remember thinking after the game was released that it really could have used that material, and based on subsequent interviews it sounds like Jonathan and Larry agree. But the budget's the budget and they didn't want to blow it, I believe.

    @ZombieAtPlay said: 1) Are you the reason that Van Helgin says the tenor that used to be in the barbery coast quartet was called Dominic? Do you sing Tenor at all?


    Nope. The line was written before I was cast. And if we're going to be pedantic about it (and I am), I'm Dominic... he's Dominique. But yes, I am a tenor and did quite a bit of singing. Not that you'd know it from Guybrush's caterwauling.

    @ZombieAtPlay said: 2) Are you getting tired of these questions (because you better not be ;) ), or are you possibly worried about what may be asked?


    Petrified! But game, nonetheless.

    @ZombieAtPlay said: Like probing questions about your dark past?

    What ever happened to your sister anyway? And why have you never been photographed with her suspected killer Donnald Ackart, who shares your birth-date and general description?


    My sister? Similarly married, with kid, coding for Jellyvision and -- last I checked -- still alive and well, so I'm a little confused about the whole suspected killer thing.

    Besides, Donald looks nothing like me. He has an eyepatch.

    @ZombieAtPlay said: do you ever forget yourself in character as guybrush?


    I was going to say no, but then I went and used "I" instead of "Guybrush" in describing the missing CMI cutscene above, so there goes that theory.

    @ZombieAtPlay said: and furthermore, has the wife ever asked you to play him, like say, in bed? x) don't have to answer the last one, just thought it would be a good followup :P


    I'm sure she's relieved.

    @ZombieAtPlay said: I enjoyed MI so much I was inspired to make my own adventure game! There's no question that it will contain tributes to the series. Once its further into its development, would you be interested in doing a short dialogue as Guybrush, Dominic? That would be so epic!


    Epic, yes! Doable, no. Union = red tape.

    @ZombieAtPlay said: Have you played ALL the old Scumm games? Or just monkey island?


    Not all, but quite a few. Loom, MI, Full Throttle, Sam 'n Max, Grim Fandango (was that not SCUMM?), Indy... maybe another one or two that I'm forgetting.

    @ZombieAtPlay said: Being in a lead designer in a big company that has never really used voice actors, are you stealable and bribable (as in can we beat and strike you with frozen tuna) to make voices for our games it the opportunity ever comes? Or do we need to go all the boring way of contacting your agent, poisoning his food and contacting you because you don't have an agent?

    I have nothing in mind, just wondering how easy it is it to communicate with you on those matters?


    I like to think I'm very easy to communicate with! And I'll communicate to you that you need to talk to my agent :-) As mentioned above, there's all kinds of red tape involved, and I prefer not to involve myself with it. That's what they're for.

    If, however, that frozen tuna is to be found at Tsukiji and you intend to fly and put me up in Tokyo for the beating, I'll be on your doorstep first thing tomorrow morning.

    @ZombieAtPlay said: 2-3. Are you the only returning voice actor for Tales of Monkey Island, the current trailer seems to have a different actor for LeChuck than in the past. I suppose I was expecting that since the cast from Curse was brought back together for the update of Secret that naturally that might have transitioned to Tales?


    I know it's a new LeChuck. Earl Boen is apparently happily retired in Hawaii and only working in a very limited fashion. And I know Alexandra Boyd (CMI Elaine) is back. Other than that, I have no clue. I haven't even heard any of the other characters yet. Aside from what's publicly available, of course.

    @ZombieAtPlay said: 4. Off-MI-topic: Mass Effect! Cool... looking forward to 2 I would assume? Did you get a chance to read either of the two novels based around the game? The first one (Revelation) is a prequel to ME1 and there is a inbetween (Ascension), both of which I have found added to the overall experience.


    I'll let you know in a month or two. I've really only just started. Too early to have formed any strong opinions yet. And no, I haven't read the novels. I think I've read one book in the last year, and it was The Soul of a Chef.

    @ZombieAtPlay said: do you think its a hopeless quest to get them back and how would you suggest i go about getting my copies back from him


    Blackmail. Failing that, car battery.

    @ZombieAtPlay said: also have you ever played the simon the sorceror series??


    Can't say that I have!

    Hokay, off to bed... back to the studio in the morning, and you don't want Guybrush sounding like he's been on an all-night bender. Well, not unless he has. (Has he? Hmmmmm......)

  • Okay I actually have a question now. xD

    Since you're recording episode 2 now (dont worry wont ask you details on WHAT - I work for sprint, I'm familiar with an NDA) and thus have seen a bit of whats there, how much back refferencing have you seen in Guybrush's dialogue (I know from telltale interviews Guybrush looks for Murray in skull piles)? I enjoy these strange continuous things so just curious how that is going in a general sense.

  • aren't you getting tired of everybody kissing your Butt in here?

    have fun in the studio!...... .......... :x

  • Is your laptop/pc filled with MI themes

    Why are we trying so hard just to come up with a question which we never wondered about

  • Dominic - thanks a bunch for answering these questions, it almost fells like Im talking to GT himself! You definitely brought the character to life for me and I agree that anyone else doing the voice would just not have been the same.

    My question is - being a fan of the MI series, does being involved in the production kind of take away some of the fun of actually playing the games for you? In particular, already knowing all the Guybrush dialog...

    Do you know the context of lines when you perform them and do you record them in order?

    I started making my own fan version of a MI game a few years ago but stopped after realising that even if I finished it, It wouldn't be fun to play as I knew all the secrets!

    That being said, if I ever resurrected it, what are your rates? :)

  • Dominic - Have you ever played any of the Metal Gear Solid series games?

  • The Monkey Island Series Is my Fav Games of all time 1# My collection of MI Memorabilia is huge lol And i had the biggest crush on you Dominic when i was younger your voice is amazing and so was your pic... anywho glad that your coming back to do Tales of monkey island and MI Special Edition ...wouldn't be MI without you....You ARE guybrush the way Adam west is batman ...lol no one else could do it... anywho have a good one

    Faith

  • Dom, thank you so much for all the advice, and for all the answers to other questions. You have been a real sport about all this. Hope recording goes well... I would have something to say about your demo, but I haven't yet had a chance to listen to it yet

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