Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon is now available on Xbox Live, PSN and PC. It is a game where you get the girl, kill the bad guys and save the world in a VHS-version of the future.
We recently chatted with Michael Biehn (who voices Sergeant Rex “Power” Colt) about how he got involved and his thoughts on the game. Biehn also stated that a sequel has “not been confirmed” as reported by other video game websites. Read on to learn more!
AMANDA DYAR: First off, can you tell us how you got involved with Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon?
MICHAEL BIEHN: Actually, I met [Creative Director] Dean [Evans] when we were in Canada doing some work on a film festival for “The Victim.” Jennifer [Biehn’s wife, Jennifer Blanc-Biehn] actually met Dean and Dean talked to her. Jennifer kind of had to drag me by my collar to meet him because I didn’t really know anything about gaming, doing voices for gaming and that kind of stuff. She got me to meet him, which turned out to be a really great thing because he is a really brilliant guy. So that is how I met him–I happened to be up in Montreal, and Jennifer dragged me to a meeting with him, and the moment I met him I knew there was something special about this guy and that I should be involved with him.
AMANDA: You’ve played the action hero role before with memorable characters Kyle Reese in The Terminator and Corporal Dwayne Hicks in Aliens, so how did it feel to assume this type of role again for Aliens: Colonial Marines and most recently in Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon. Also, were there any dramatic differences for you as an actor in portraying these two video game characters?
MICHAEL: Oh, yes there are. There is a big difference. There is no storyline in any of the video games per se. There may be a storyline for the players, but for the actors themselves they are mostly one-liners they have said about something or they are commenting on something that is going on. There is really no other actor that you are playing off of since you are not returning dialogue. Which mostly means you are talking to yourself–so it is not like a regular acting experience. It usually, especially in Far Cry, was talking to myself the entire time.
AMANDA: Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon is a game full of great dialogue as well as some great fan service and inside jokes just for gamers. How many of the references did you actually understand while recording for the game, and do you have any favorite games or gaming moments that you’d like to share with us?
MICHAEL: Well, no. I have children and they grew up playing Call of Duty, and I watched them sit behind the computer and play games for hundreds and hundreds of hours throughout their childhood. But I was never familiar with them–I knew that some of them had ratings and some of them were kind of violent–so I kept my younger one away from them. He plays this game where you build stuff–I forget what it is called.
AMANDA: Minecraft? My son plays that too.
MICHAEL: Yeah, he has been playing that for about a year. That is my ten-year-old. He isn’t allowed to play any kind of action games that have anything to do with guns. I have a nineteen-year-old son who has been playing Call of Duty for five years. I used to walk by his room and I would go in there and watch him play. I tried to play it once, but it seemed to hard for me to play.
AMANDA: It seems you and Ubisoft Creative Director Dean Evans had a unique relationship while working together on Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon. Can you tell us a bit about working with Dean and some of the ideas you two were able to contribute to the final release of the game?
MICHAEL: Well, first of all, I didn’t have any ideas. This is Dean’s game and Dean’s dialogue, and this is Dean’s baby. All I did really was try to help him create a game that took place back in the Eighties or was being told from the Eighties. He is an extraordinarily bright man, and he is very, very creative. I don’t think I have ever been around someone who has a mind that moves that fast, as his does, from one creative subject to another. I have a feeling that he will be successful in whatever he does, but this may just be the beginning for him. He is a relatively young man. He is just a brilliant guy from what I can see.
AMANDA: What was the best part or what did you like most about working on Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon?
MICHAEL: What I liked most about it was working with Dean; I think he is an extraordinarily talented man. I think he will go on to great things–whether it is gaming, movies or music–because he is just a really talented guy. You know, he reminds me of working with someone like James Cameron or somebody like Michael Bay, Robert Rodriguez or Quentin Tarantino. They are just fun people to be around because they are so smart and knowledgeable about the business they are in. He created this game, but he can reference any character in any movie, television show, and he knows music extraordinarily well. He is just an all-around brilliant guy. I consider myself a reasonably smart person so it is fun to be around people that have that much intellectual talent and ability.
AMANDA: There has been mention of a sequel for Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon, can you tell us a little about this and if you would be interested in working on a sequel?
MICHAEL: I don’t know anything. If they do a sequel, that is Dean’s decision. For all I know it might not have anything to do with me, and he might make a completely different game. I had thought I heard someone say something about a sequel, but I really don’t know anything about it, which means if there was one, then I don’t know if I would be involved. I don’t know anything about what the subject matter would be or what it would be like. He never discussed with me about a sequel. I just kind of overheard someone talking about it actually, and it was probably a conversation I shouldn’t have heard.
So I don’t know if there is going to be a sequel or not. A couple of game sites have come out and said there is going to be a sequel, and I am quoted as saying there is going to be a sequel. I probably shouldn’t have said that from just overhearing what someone else was talking about while we were doing the voice-over work. I could be totally wrong about that.
AMANDA: Obviously, Kyle Reese has experience fighting robots in the post-apocalyptic world of The Terminator films, and Hicks can hold his own in a battle as well. Who wins in a fight to the death between these two characters and Sergeant Rex “Power” Colt?
MICHAEL: Well this character I play here in Dean’s game has much more effective weapons than either Kyle had or Hicks had. If it was just mano against mano, I would always like to think that Kyle Reese would win. But I think that my character in Dean’s game has a steel arm–so if he does and I am not mistaken–then he would probably end up winning in a fight. I have been asked this question between “Aliens” and the “Terminator,” and I always said that Kyle Reese would win. But I think Sergeant Rex “Power” Colt will give them a run for their money because he has a steel arm. If you have a weapon that is attached to your body, then you’re going to win the fight.
AMANDA: Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon is easily one of the most entertaining games we’ve played all year thanks in large part to your tremendous acting skills. Do you have any other projects in the works that you’d like to tell us about?
MICHAEL: I have started a production company and made a movie called “The Victim.” The movie is now in video stores and at your local Walmarts and so forth. That is a little grindhouse movie that I made in twelve days and had a lot of fun doing that. I had so much fun from doing that, that Jennifer and I started a production company and shot a second movie and then a third movie that was directed by a friend of mine who I worked on a show with called “Hawaii.” Now that one is finished, and Jennifer just directed a movie. We are doing those kind of low budget movies instead of waiting around for agents to call. Now we have two in the can and got some financing for a movie called “Hidden in the Woods,” which is a remake of a Chilean movie that a guy did that I liked a lot and we are going to remake.
Another movie I did that came out last year is “The Divide” that is a very, very good movie with Milo Ventimiglia and Rosanna Arquette. There was brilliant acting in it, and it was a very good piece I think. It was one of my better acting performances and one of the better characters I have played. But “The Victim” was something we did in such a short period of time, and in just three weeks I directed, produced and shot it in twelve days. I am probably prouder of making “The Victim” and having it turn out as good as it did than anything I have EVER done as an actor or director in my life. So that is out there for anyone to go see, that was just a little fun movie that was made for almost no money at all. The grindhouse movies from Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino have kind of turned me onto these low budget movies, and I remember seeing some of them at drive-in movies as the opening features of movies that my parents went to see with Elizabeth Taylor and Paul Newman in “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” or something of that matter. There would be an original movie that would start at six o’clock–so when it was still light out, then we were all down by the playground, and once it got dark, we would go up and watch the feature. So I made one of these really low-budget grindhouse movies, and I had a lot of fun doing it. And considering how much money and time I had to make it–it is an achievement I will always be very proud of. And I think for me, it is one of my most fulfilling artistic endeavors.
AMANDA: It is great stuff and something everyone should check out. And your work on Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon was amazing and people are still raving about that as well. I think your work in video games is something you should do more of as well.
MICHAEL: I would like to. These decisions are never made by me, and people ask me why I wasn’t in “Aliens 3,” why I wasn’t in “Avatar,” and all I can say is that I don’t get the chance. I would like to work with Dean again, but I am not sure if he is going to make any more games or if he is going to go into movies or continue with the music stuff that he does. But I would like to work with Dean again because I think he is a really brilliant guy. And it is really fun to be around these guys like him and James Cameron and Michael Bay. They are just really fun, interesting people to be around. So hopefully I get a chance to work with him again in one capacity or another, and hopefully everyone enjoys “Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon” as much as I did making it.
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