I sit here in Joe’s guest room savoring the memory of the numerous gourmet meals I have been treated too here ( still astounded Joe’s learned to cook!) and enjoying the gorgeous home that Joe has opened up to me … am flooded with nostalgia for our high school days so I’m glad to answer all your questions cuz its letting me remember things I haven’t thought about in aaaggesss!
Sparrow_hawk writes: “Are you a fan of the Assassin’s Creed games? Have you played them? Do you have a favorite? Is there anything that makes you crazy (in an annoyed sort of way) when you play them? Does the movie begin at the beginning of the story or do they play a little fast and loose with the timeline?”
CAS: Hey S.H.! Great questions! I most def have played ‘em.. and being I’m that emotional sensitive actor type …I tend to have a preference for the awesome ending of ACR. AC3 ended a bit strangely and left me feeling a bit unsatisfied. I also LOVED the bombs in ACR ..I became a master of stealth and bomb-duggery in the end… getting rid of all my opponents with some nasty toxic gases. AC bloodlines was not too shabby either! As for Fassbender’s flick…as far as I know they only chose a writer a few months ago so it’s not likely to even be a locked story yet, let alone anything but top secret. I will say that I think that he should play Ezio and let someone ..oh i dunno … a little browner…play Altair.. 😉
Nik Tesla writes: “So, yeah. I’m a gamer. And a fan of the AC series. So, assuming that “Cas” is Anvar from AC Revelations, my question is: Were you involved in the decision to use a mid-eastern accent? Philip Shahbaz, who voiced Altair in the first game, sounded (inexplicably, given the backstory) like he was from North America. By AC Revelations, which Cas voiced, Altair had apparently acquired an accent more representative of his Syrian roots. Who makes a decision like that, and was Cas involved? What did he think of not sounding like Phillip Shahbaz? And did he meet Kristen Bell (voice of Lucy)?”
CAS: Very intuitive observation, Nik. Regarding the decision to go the direction we went, I think that Ubi wanted the accent, and they wanted the more middle eastern element for the final chapter of Ezio and Altair. As for my role in the whole thing, I came to the table with the accent but then we had the very fun challenge of aging Altair from the age of 30 to 90 during the game. A brand new challenge for me, but I loved it. We went thru numerous versions of OLD Altair before we arrived at the voices you guys heard and enjoyed in the game.
Randomness writes: “1. Are you a fan of any of the Stargate shows? 2. Are you a foodie? And if so what are your fav foods? 3. Do you have any hobbies? 4. What would you say have been the high, and low points of your career? 5. What was the most enjoyable TV show or movie you’ve appeared in? 6. As you’re shooting a movie at the moment, from what you’re allowed to say, what kind of movie is it, and what kind of role do you have? 7. What’s your fav tv show at the moment? 8. Where can you see yourself in 10 years time?”
CAS: geeezus! Now I know why you call yourself Randomness. Ok in the spirit of how you asked, here are your answers.
1-YES! The original SG is my fave! Cuz Joe & Paul rocked it !!
2- YES BBQ porterhouse steaks, Thai, sushi
3- COMICS, Gaming, Sci fi and fantasy. If someone were to offer to DM me in a game of D& D I wouldn’t turn it down…oh and my most recently acquired passion? ….PAINTBALL My team is called the SUAVE BASTARDS. You can find our page on FB!
4-Highs have been Source Code, Neverland, and the upcoming DIANA movie (I play Dodi) and also entering into the whole COMICON world …love the fans!
5- I think The PHANTOM was my most fun bad guy. Gotta luv beheading a businessman at a board meeting.
6 – Currently shooting BABY SELLERS here in Vancouver. Directed by my Neverland Director Nick Willing and starring Jennifer Finnigan and Kirstie Alley. A dark, brilliantly written drama about the baby trafficking trade. And yes (I know you will be shocked) I’m playing the bad guy.
Brian mcgee writes: “Is Cas allowed to tell us if he’s filmed this scene http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YQ86b-2xpNk yet?”
Cas: Brian, you’re a deeply troubled little puppy and although I’m bound by death penalty gag orders not to reveal trade secrets … I can tell you I DID film these
Ponytail writes: “Some questions for Cas Anvar. Brave man! You have a long diverse impressive resume. What has been your favorite job so far?”
Cas: BEST PROJECTS Neverland, Source Code, Diana, and I cannot WAIT to play Captain Eric Cern of the Starship C.AS. NOBILITY (yes… that’s right … my name is in the name of the ship is that a problem?)
Insert shameless plug – http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/cowboyerrant/will-you-bring-nobility-to-life?ref=live
BEST ROLES – NEVERLAND, THE PHANTOM and LAST RESORT!
BTW you can check out clips from all these projects on my website www.casanvar.com
“Is there anything you haven’t done yet that you would like to do?”
Cas: To be the romantic lead or hero of a major series or feature, ideally something in the action genre.
“If you could only do one thing for the rest of your career, what would it be?”
“What was the funniest thing that ever happened to you while filming, recording, or acting, etc?”
Cas: So many, …but one was when shooting Source Code – Jake Gyllenhaal played a practical joke on me when we doing our scene and was hanging from the roof like a monkey in the bathroom of the train, so when I walked in ( during a take!) I had to try really hard to not crack…and said something like …’well um …I didnt realize this was occupied sir… pardon me…’ lol
“Where do you live when not in Joe’s guest room? Vancouver, Toronto, NY, LA, etc?”
Cas: What do you mean? This is my only home ..oh, Joe, I forgot to ask you …Can I stay a little longer…like till 2015? (Otherwise I’ll have to go back to LA in Studio City)
“Who speaks more foreign languages, you or Joe?”
Cas: English French Farci , and smatterings of Spanish, Italian, Arabic and Hindi… Joe?
“Did you and Joe get into any trouble in High School? Like what?”
Cas: Ha! Pale broccoli – that’s all I can really say.. or wait… there was the time that someone started my dad’s boat during the toga party ..which wouldn’t have been so bad if it hadn’t been on the trailer in the front yard at the time….oh and then there was the time we ran nearly 6 miles in the middle of the night to get home because our ride was too drunk to drive and Joe and I refused to take a risk…smart boys we were. 🙂 I think our prom pic says it all …can you say ‘Revenge of the Nerds’?
“I guess you got to sample dasndanger’s Puerco Pibil? Well, how was it?”
Cas: Ummm delish! Yummmmmm
Tam Dixon writes: “I recognize Cas Anvar from Netherland. Hi! I hope the visit goes well. Questions for Mr. Anvar: How does acting in movies/shows compare to video game voice roles? Which roles to you prefer between the two?”
Cas: Hey DIX!! It’s NEVERLAND actually, but I am fondly looking forward to appearing in Netherland at some future date…;-) As for the diff between FILM/TV and voice work – it’s substantially different. 1- In voice I get to play ANY type of character I want as long as I can do the accent. I don’t have to shave. I can wear sweats , so I play Marines & soldiers and Russian spies and Asian baddies in my flip flops…as well as all the stuff I play on camera…its a lot of fun to play these roles I’d never get to play in real life. It’s really hard to say which one I like more… don’t make me choose ..don’t make me choose!! :-O
Dasndanger writes: “QUESTIONS FOR CAS!!
“1. What kind of kid was Joey back in school? Quiet? Nerdy? Cool? Smart? Dumb as a bag of hammers?”
Cas: Ha! Nicely played Das…very few fans would think to ask the best friend from high school about their blogging guru. Haha. But now the veil is parted, and I will say that Joe…or as you so correctly called him, Joey, was a unique combination of nerdy/cool. As I recall, not a huge fan of sciences or phys ed but great at long distance running …and loved English and history classes…Not quite sure how he pulled off the whole thing though cuz the jocks liked him and the nerds liked him. Even the girls liked him.. He was kind of an Alex Keaton type except that instead of money and business he was always talking about stories and writing and super serious about it…Oh and football and D&D yikes! its scary to think about the football pools he organized (and won!) … And then there was this strange war game he invented and got the entire school addicted to playing which involved paper and pens and drawing islands and boats and doing some sort of battle ship move with the pen to blow up your opponent… completely bizarre now that I think about it… but back then… everyone was lining up to play against Joe in some massive war tournament which obviously he won. He was kinda like a modern day Tom Sawyer or Huck fin. Could get anyone to pretty much to do or like anything…but didn’t have tons of close friends. Just a few of us. Friends with lots of girls and always there were his stories…and his writing writing writing… always writing ..Carried a spiral note book around with him 24/7 filled with chicken scrawl pages of endless stories, ideas and concepts.
“2. Do you have a specific fond memory/story about Joe and you from back in the day that you could share with us?”
Cas: I’m not sure why this comes to mind…but it was kinda hard to make Joe laugh. He had a weird sense of humor ..but being that I was kinda weird I often made him laugh without even thinking ..and that was always rewarding. I remember one time ..it seems silly now…but we were having breakfast and I said ” Jey do you want some O.J…. J.O.?” …. he died….I’m not quite sure why …but that was fun.
“3. Will you have any involvement in the planned Assassin’s Creed movie?”
Cas: Damn straight!! If I have anything to do about it …. just gotta let Michael Fassbender know… Feel free to send him a note. 😉
“4. Do you have a favorite Persian dish that you could share with Joey and his blog followers?”
Cas: Ooooooh, good one. Umm not sure how to spell these things but FEESENJOON is awesome. It’s pomegranate paste with walnuts and chicken…god its good! And Tadeek, the crunchy rice that cooks at the bottom of the rice cooker is a delicacy – as well as Gormeh Zabs, a stew I would probably blade soeone for.
Line Noise writes: “Question for Cas: When recording a voice for a video game are you given any context as to where your character is and what he’s doing so you know how to act?”
Cas: Sometimes LINE ! But not always .. For ACR I was shown a very rough video presentation of the gaming world …It looked like a monkey had been typing code on the keyboard …No resemblance to the epic beauty of the finished game … but it let me know the basic action then on CALL OF DUTY which was full motion capture. We had an empty green screen room with tape marks on the ground and a verbal description of the mountain cave we were in and the thunderous artillery blowing sand and dust in our faces etc. So it was all acting… but we did get to rush to the monitor after each take and see the animated characters doing the take we had just shot in a virtual environment ..it was sooo cool!
Patricia Stewart-Bertrand writes: “For Cas: 1) How did you get int o the gamer business? Did Joe have a hand in it? 2) What advice would you give to other people who want to follow in your footsteps? 3) Joe has said that to be a successful writer you need to have talent, networking skills and luck. How do you feel about this? What has helped you the most out of the three? 4)How did you manage to get an agent, if you have one? 5) Is there any money in gaming for anyone besides the owner of the company? 6) Where do you hope your career will take you next?”
Cas: Ok, PAT (M’s future voice actress want to be) here’s the scoop: voice fell into my lap…I was a personal trainer during the writers’ strike and had a huge voice actor as a client. She hooked me up with a big voice agency. I was good at voices and I booked ACR as my first job…THAT WAS GOOD LUCK.
2- If you can do ANYTHING else in your life that makes you happy and fulfills you other than acting…DO IT! That’s my advice. This business is not for the faint of heart or the thin skinned.
3 – Talent, drive, thick skin and luck in equal quantities, yes. And you’d be surprised how little talent has to do with it at a certain point. But it is a requirement for sure. For me, my drive and inability to take NO for an answer is what got me here.
4- Agents must be sought out unless you’re a star and usually the best way is by referral. Sending materials in unsolicited usually ends up in the garbage (at least in LA). In smaller cities, knocking on the door and dropping your resume and photo off in person does actually work if luck is on your side and they need someone like you at that time.
5- Gaming has not yet yielded the lucrative results for the talent that film and TV have done because, currently, our unions have not gotten us poor little artists a piece of the pie for gaming sales. It will come but who knows when. I want to be an action hero and dramatic classical film actor. Let’s just say if someone offered me Hugh Jackman’s career I would not likely turn it down …or rather I’d wrestle the person to the ground and force them to sign the offer in blood and scream no erassies.! As for Joe having a hand in my gaming career…I’m actually trying to get JOE into gaming. He didn’t realize till I showed him some of the newest games coming out like Ellen Page’s new BEYOND 2 SOULS game or THE LAST OF US or Assassins Creed, just how story heavy and character driven games have become. And how dependent they now are on brilliant writers to develop and create these complex new games. With technology maxing out now and visual quality at near photo realism the only direction left for developers to grow is in story…deep complex nerdgasmic stories. You should have seen his eyes light up and his Mr. Burns hands rub together… animation-check, Sci fi –check comic books- check …Gaming…a new world to conquer.
DP writes: “@Cas – What is your involvement in the playtesting?”
Cas: At this time, DP, I do not BETA test games …at least not as an actor…I sometimes will sign up online for them and play the crap outta a new game and send all my bugs to the developers…but not as part of my acting world. Thats just me being an uber geek gaming nerd! 😉
Airelle writes: “Cas, who did the music for Nobility promo?”
Cas: Airelle, well now there’s an excellent question because it is an all original score for our new sci fi show. And it’s composed by Charles-Henri Avelange. I’m gonna put the link here so people can watch the hotness of this new series which I will be Captaining out of dry dock.
Yet another shameless plug – Feel free to support NOBILITY. There are 2 weeks left to get it going and we really do have the most awesome team on board. I even dropped the bug in Joe’s ear to ponder writing a season (or 2).
OK off to do another day’s shooting on Baby Sellers as the nefarious Vikram (baby seller extraordinaire)