The voice behind: Brigitte — the new hero of Overwatch!
This post was originally posted on April 3rd / 2018 over at IGDB’s old blog. We decided to save it / repost it here. Enjoy!
We’re back for another entry of The Voice Behind… ! Today we have the lovely Matilda Smedius joining us, she graced her voice acting talents to Brigitte Lindholm, the latest cast entry for Overwatch. Now let’s get to it!
1. Tell us a bit about yourself!
Well, I was born and raised in Stockholm, Sweden. I have studied music since elementary school all the way through high school and music and acting are my passions. Anything creative, really, is what keeps me going.
2. How did you first get started in voice acting?
My parents are voice actors so I basically grew up in the studio. When I was 6 or 7 years old I did my first voice acting job and I have been doing it ever since. I’ve always done Swedish dubs though so doing a voice in an international game is something completely new to me.
3. Did you audition for Brigitte? Can you tell us anything about the process?
Yes, I did several auditions. For the first audition, I actually had no idea what kind of project it was but I had to speak English so I was obviously intrigued. The second audition I got to know that it was a Blizzard production and since I have played some of their games I was really excited. It was such a cool experience!
During the third audition I was reading through the script for the audition and I saw lines about escorting “the payload” and protecting “the objective” and I realized I was auditioning for Overwatch. I remember trying to keep my cool in the studio but it was so hard!
4. How did it feel to get the role? Is this your first voice-over work in video games?
It felt amazing and surreal! It is my first voice-over work in a video game and it’s so different compared to dubbing. I remember my first dubbing session after doing Brigitte recordings for a while, we had to do so many of retakes because I was used to speaking English and recording a minimum of 3 takes per line for the game. Where as when I’m dubbing in Swedish most of the lines are supposed to be correct on the first take.
“When it comes to Overwatch the community really gives the voice actors all the praise in the world.”
5. What’s best about Brigitte?
How determined she is. No matter how many times she fails, she will always try again and do her best because she knows that — even though it’s kind of a cheesy thing her dad says — practice makes perfect! I also love that she is so aware of her own abilities. She knows that she’s badass and she isn’t afraid to say it but at the same time she’s humble and doesn’t let it get to her head.
6. If not Brigitte, who is your favorite character in Overwatch and why?
Ah, such a hard question! I used to only play as Pharah because she was the first one I played and I felt the most secure with her abilities. But I recently tried Moira and I loved her abilities as well. When it comes to voice lines I really like D.Va because Charlet Chung’s voice is so cute and perfect for the character. But then again Darin De Paul is incredible as the voice of Reinhardt! As are all the other voice actors, really… I can’t answer this question, they are all so great in their own ways!
7. Isn’t it a bit scary to jump into a game that has such a massive community?
In a way it was scary right when everything got announced and I got about 1000 followers on Twitter in an hour. But, since then, I have had the chance to interact with my fans and the other voice actors and they are all so welcoming and loving. It is a massive community, which can be intimidating at first, but it’s full of supporting people and I have received nothing but love since the announcement of Brigitte came out.
8. Do you agree with people who say that Voice Actors doesn’t get enough time in the spotlight? That gamers often know more about the character than about the voice behind it?
I would say that can be true for some games and TV shows but when it comes to Overwatch the community really gives the voice actors all the praise in the world. However, I feel like one big misconception is that being a voice actor is as easy as sitting in a studio reading lines out loud and I think that is why voice actors might not be getting enough attention in the spotlight. Most people don’t know the hard work and years of experience you need to be a good voice actor.
9. Are you a gamer yourself? If so, what games do you play?
It’s hard to say… If the definition of a gamer is someone who dedicates most of their day to gaming, I’m not a gamer. But I do absolutely love playing video games! Without a doubt, Overwatch is my favorite online game and has been since I played it the first time. But mostly I play games by myself and my favorite games are platformers. I’m impatient so I want to know the controls as fast as possible. I love Megaman because, for example, the controls are very easy to learn and instead it’s the content of the game that provides the challenge.
10. Do you have a dream game that you’d like to voice act for?
I’m honestly already living my voice acting dream, haha! But I would love to voice act a character similar to Aloy in Horizon Zero Dawn.
11. How do you prepare for a role or a voice acting job? Do you have any routines or preparations?
I don’t really do any preparations but when I’m in the studio, I make sure to use my whole body when I’m talking. All the things an on-screen actor can express through body movements and their facial expressions, a voice actor have to express through only their voice. It might feel silly when you’re in a small and dark studio by yourself but it really helps to convey the right emotions. Especially when I’m dubbing, I focus on the original character and how they move when they say certain things so that my Swedish voice can match as closely as possible.
12. Who is your biggest inspiration/idol?
I don’t have someone in particular that inspires me. Instead, I try to learn things from all kinds of people in my life. Meaning I, of course, look up to public figures that I think are great role models but I also look up to my family, my friends and other people in my surroundings that I think are exceptional in different ways. I think you can learn a lot from most people.
13. Are you a person who plays the games you’re in, or do you avoid it?
Overwatch is the only game I am in and yeah, I have played Overwatch since the release of Brigitte. It’s so weird to hear your own voice in a game and I could not really focus on the actual gaming experience because I kept reacting to hearing myself, haha… But I think if I can get used to it, I won’t have a problem with it! Plus, you can always learn what to do better next time by listening to your previous work.
14. What are you doing when you’re not voice acting?
In my spare time I enjoy hanging out with my family, my friends and, of course, my cats. And I’m constantly doing something related to music, whether it’s listening to music, writing songs, playing an instrument or, mostly, singing. You can ask anyone I know and they will tell you that I can never keep quiet!
15. Anything else to add?
Thank you so much for having me interviewed on your site!