The New York Times today profiles actor Michael Hollick who provided the voice and body-motion for Niko Bellic, the main character of Grand Theft Auto IV. Hollick made about $100,000 for his work in flate fees, but would have made much more if GTA were a successful movie or TV show rather than video game. He gets no residuals. The payscale for work on projects like videogames and internet programs is at the top of the list of complaints for the upcoming actors’ strike. Said Mr. Hollick:
“Obviously I’m incredibly thankful to Rockstar for the opportunity to be in this game when I was just a nobody, an unknown quantity,” Mr. Hollick, 35, said last week over dinner in Willamsburg, Brooklyn, shortly after performing in the aerial theater show “Fuerzabruta” in Union Square. “But it’s tough, when you see Grand Theft Auto IV out there as the biggest thing going right now, when they’re making hundreds of millions of dollars, and we don’t see any of it. I don’t blame Rockstar. I blame our union for not having the agreements in place to protect the creative people who drive the sales of these games. Yes, the technology is important, but it’s the human performances within them that people really connect to, and I hope actors will get more respect for the work they do within those technologies.”
Um, I’m pretty sure it’s the stealing cars and shooting strippers in the face that’s what people really connect to. Not that Mr. Hollick didn’t do a great job and shouldn’t get some more money, but I just want to be really clear that while the storyline of GTA IV is cool and stuff, I’m still pretty sure it’s the throwing molotov cocktails at people in the park for no reason when it’s not even a mission in the game that is what the kids love. Kids are the worst.