Actor Jared Padalecki Steps Into The Vocal Booth
About a week ago I was fortunate to have a phone interview with film and television actor Jared Padalecki. Jared is best known for starring in the hit shows Supernatural and Gilmore Girls, as well as having major roles in films such as House of Wax and the upcoming Friday the 13th remake. In Jared’s latest film, Thomas Kinkade’s Christmas Cottage, the actor narrates the movie in a style not unlike that heard in films such as The Shawshank Redemption and Stand By Me.
I asked Jared about the differences between voice acting and his work in front of the camera. Jared replied, “It’s totally different. And also, the narration was supposed to be after the fact, so the narrator was supposed to be an older, wiser version of the character that you’re watching. The narration is part of the script so you know you’re ultimately going to have to do it, but I’ve never had to really to do [voice over work] before. I love it and I love narrated movies. I mean, I know I’m no Morgan Freeman but it was fun to kind of sit there and try and tell a story and ultimately that’s what acting is: telling a story through characters and your scenes and emotions.”
I then asked him to tell me about the actual recording experiences, “It was weird; I think the day after we wrapped shooting I sat down in the sound studio with [director] Michael Campus and did some voice overs. It was kind of bizarre, reading [like that], but it’s kind of fun to hit the nail on the head and actually narrate a story. We all love listening to stories and telling stories so it was nice to kind of just go through and do it.”
Jared also explained how the film’s director, Michael Campus, worked as his voice over producer. “Michael was like, ‘Yeah, you’re hitting it head on, let’s move to the next,’ and then some of the takes he was, ‘You know what? Change it around a little bit. Add a little bit more nostalgia, you know? Be more fond of this character or that character; you know, kind of laugh at this guy.’ So it’s just part of having a great director, you just kind of trust him and go ‘This guy knows what he’s doing so I’m just going to listen and watch the finished project and I’m sure I’ll be happy.’”
What I found most interesting about Jared’s experience in the vocal booth is how similar it was to most anyone’s. Whether you’re a famous Hollywood actor or a first-time voice talent, when recording, your main focus is to be a professional and work closely with the producer to create a product that will ultimately make the client happy.
This is a great example of how universal the voice acting experience is. It’s also a reminder that possessing strong job knowledge, skill, and professionalism can lead to great success.
And perhaps the best part… you don’t even need to be a famous actor to do it!
Mike Spring at Voice Coaches
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