Critical Role Cast on Voice Roles and Friendly Competition

Image: io9 | Linda Codega

Critical Role’s panel at New York Comic Con was full of questions about the popular web series—including its guest stars, recurring villains, and Matt Mercer’s uncanny ability to bring NPCs back from the dead. Or out of the shadows, whatever suits the story at any given time.

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But beyond talk of the Bell’s Hells and various other adventuring parties, fans wanted to know about the cast’s other ventures into voice acting. Almost everyone had a funny war story to share about Hollywood casting.

While Mercer’s announcement about his role as Vincent Valentine in Final Fantasy IIV hadn’t yet occurred at the time of the panel, the group was candid about how often they found themselves competing against each other—and sometimes even themselves—for roles. Marisha Ray, a cast member and creative director with Critical Role, said, “It’s funny because occasionally, when we get acting breakdowns or casting breakdowns from our agents, it says ‘we’re really looking for a Laura Bailey soundalike.’” As the audience cheered, Ray mimed holding a phone, and said, “And I’m like, ‘do you want me to text her?’” Bailey, who was on the panel, also chimed in: “I once got an audition that asked for a Laura Bailey soundalike.” (Sam Reigel jokingly asked, “Did you get the job?” Bailey laughed, “Nope!”)

Taliesin Jaffe said that when he was younger he realized that he started booking more jobs when Liam O’Brien wasn’t available. O’Brien responded that “I once auditioned for a project that I won’t name where they sent me a vocal reference… that was me.” He did have to audition, and after several weeks he booked the role. Mercer jumped in and added, “I had another project audition where the voice reference was me and I didn’t book it.”

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