Originally Posted by poltergeisty
Wow! that must have been really fun to work for Rockstar. How did you and your wife land the job? Did you see scenes as you did the voice overs?
I've never heard specifically, but I assume my initial contact by Team Bondi founder Brendan McNamara came because of my LAPD Communications History website, listed in my sig line, below. In the beginning I was asked for some general information about LAPD radio codes in the 1940s, and over time it became an intermittently busy series of back-and-forth emails asking for more specifics and suggestions about radio teminology for specific types of calls, a little bit about LAPD's organization structure, etc. This went on from early 2006 until just this January.
All of it was with "Team Bondi" folks in Australia. After my initial contacts with Brendan - an absolutely terrific guy to deal with - most of my work was with "script assistants," and virtually all of it by email. Some time in the first year or two I was asked if I would be interested in recording some dispatcher voiceovers when they eventually
came to California for recording sessions, which I was delighted to do, and I asked if my wife might be invited too... since most of LAPD's dispatchers have always been women, and she'd been there for 32 years - much longer than I had. Early in 2010 we were finally called to the "Depth Analysis" studio
near Los Angeles and recorded our stuff in the white room shown in that video - but sans any make-up; we're voices only. You can see the chair we sat in, and just above the chair a darkish monitor where they scrolled our lines, so there was no memorizing required for our radio calls, though I had rehearsed it all ahead of time. Lots
of takes and re-takes if either I or they wanted to change anything, and it was all new to me, so it was fun. And in contrast to real-life dispatching, it's a nice luxury to be able to simply rebroadcast a call if you didn't like the way you said it the first time.
I have to give a big nod to McNamara - during our recording hours I made a number of suggestions about little (or not so little) changes in my lines to make them sound a bit more realistic in "LAPD-ese," and I don't think he once refused to go along, even though it required his production manager to constantly keep making permanent changes in their script on-the-fly.
Considering the length of the script and multiple possible game options for the players, I'm sure there are other dispatcher voices besides ours, but we never met anyone other than Brendan, Oliver Bao the "Motion Capture" inventor, and two production assistants. And other than a few minutes to view some BRIEF snippets from the game and their mapping and re-creation of 1947 Los Angeles, we haven't seen any scenes at all of the incidents we recorded for, and only the parts of the scripts immediately before/after our lines. So besides the "non-disclosure" agreement I had to sign, I really know nothing beyond what's been shown in the stuff that's made it to the internet. Heck, I've even had to pre-order my own copy of the game, and my son is gonna teach me how to use his Xbox tomorrow.
Unless it's been pulled offline, I just now found a premature, and undoubtedly unauthorized "preview" video of a bit of the gameplay at the top of this page 14 Minutes of L.A. Noire's Unexpected Thrills
. At about the 12:35 minute mark you can hear a short bit of my charismatic dispatching to a "459 (burglar) there now" call, complete with the typical noise that plagued AM radio reception in the city, especially from manufacturing plants, streetcar wires, etc. I see they even managed to add that and the background sounds from police radio-room equipment (time-clocks, number stamps, etc) into the audio track.
I don't understand the layers upon layers of separate "businesses" involved, but Teambondi, an independent company from Australia, was the outfit who did the actual production work. Rockstar is releasing the game, and they are apparently owned by Take-Two Interactive of New York who actually paid us, with checks from yet another outfit in Fountain Valley, CA. Go figure. They'll have to sell a zillion copies of the thing just to recoup all their internet, phone and postage expenses!