Elliot Page, Rosario Dawson, and Keanu Reeves: Why Might We See Hollywood Stars in Video Games

Is it a love of the craft? Or a good marketing ploy? We break it down here.

Elliot Page, Rosario Dawson, Keanu Reeves. These are just a few names that we’ve seen lately merge into a hitherto unseen land to professional actors: gaming.

Why is that? Why are so many stars getting into gaming roles? Is it a sheer love of the craft? Or a good marketing ploy? We break it down here.

Star power

The simple answer to this question is pretty simple. It’s the same reason that Kevin Bacon is more known for EE broadband than his dancing skills nowadays. It’s the same reasoning around creating any movie poster, and why there are contractual arguments about who’s name goes where. Star power sells.

When Keanu Reeves entered the Xbox E3 video game conference to tell everyone just how “breathtaking” Cyberpunk 2077 was going to be, he was interrupted with “You’re breathtaking!” It’s a good example of the fact that some were more excited to see Keanu than the game.

The same concept of star power applies to escape rooms as well. While the idea of being locked in a room and solving puzzles may be intriguing in itself, having a well-known celebrity or public figure attached to it can create a whole new level of excitement and interest. It’s not uncommon to see escape rooms themed around popular TV shows or movies, or even featuring a celebrity host or spokesperson. And with more and more people searching for unique and exciting experiences, escape rooms have become one of the most fun things to do in Fort Worth, especially when they feature a recognizable face.

However, it also offers an element of legitimacy to an industry that was previously seen as where actors went to die. There was once a time when playing Jungle Jackpots slot was not considered a good way to spend your time. For example, you’ll hear stories of actors doing voice acting for the fun of it. The likes of Matthew Perry being approached for his stint as Benny in Fallout New Vegas because he mentioned in an interview that he loved the Fallout games. And Tim Curry doesn’t seem like the type to take any job too seriously, never mind delivering the hammiest expression of “SPACE!” in human history.

But today’s stars are taking their roles very seriously. Elliot Page, for example, seemed to pour an Oscar-worthy performance into the ultimate timeline mess that was David Cage’s Beyond: Two Souls, as did Grey’s Anatomy star Jesse Williams in the follow up Detroit: Become Human.
And then there is the entire cast of LA Noire, which has a premise entirely based on the need for their actors to be able to act. You are supposed to detect when a suspect is lying based on their facial expressions, made possible by, at the time, revolutionary face mapping technology.

Is it always a recipe for success?

It depends on what you think the goal was. You will often hear the words “Peter Dinklage” commonly used in the same sentence as “Destiny”, but it’s commonly followed by some sarcastic impression of his line “That wizard came from the moon!” and the complete lack of interest behind it.

If the point was to make Destiny part of gaming legend with a beloved actor playing a main part, they succeeded. But if the point was to give a convincing and good performance, well, that’s why they replaced him further down the line.

And this can work two ways. Keanu Reeves’ face was all over the promotion for Cyberpunk 2077, but when the game was released, it was a buggy, glitch-filled mess. The only thing breathtaking was the rage induced from trying to play a game so broken. No one was about to blame Keanu for that, but no one could blame him if he were to get justly angry at CD Projekt Red for dragging his name through the dirt.

But he wouldn’t. Because he’s The Internet’s Boyfriend.

Krysta Jakson

Krysta is an experienced blogger, writing blogs on lifestyle, fashion, beauty and travel. She wonderfully describes the latest trends on these topics, making the articles interesting for all the readers.