CCC: Tell us about the contrast in experiences you had playing Chris Redfield in Resident Evil: Code Veronica vs. playing him in Resident Evil 5?
RL: Probably the biggest difference was the difference in technologies that were involved. For CV we used a magnetic capture system that had us attached to wires. (See pics) And for the RE5 stuff, we were at House Of Moves and used the Vicon optical motion cameras. The difference is that for RE5 we had a huge space to run around freely and did not have to worry about getting caught up in wires. In addition, with the new technology, even the subtlest moves we picked up. There was no need to really over-act or make things really big, because the data was able to pick up all the small subtle nuances.
Other differences were more acting-related - for RE5 I was a bit more of a seasoned performer. As I said, RE: CV was my first mo-cap job. I was new to the whole thing back then. Now with over 10 years of mo-cap under my belt, I know more about what works and [what] doesn't as far as physical performance goes. It actually worked out quite nice character-wise too! The RE: 5 Chris is also 10 years older, has more experience, and is more confident about killing Zombies. We also tried to make things more real and believable by putting all the cast through tactical weapons training - shooting real guns and doing real world exercises in different terrain situations. It was a lot of fun!
CCC: What is a typical mo-cap session like for you? What is involved?
RL: Really depends on the project; but depending on the season, I have more layers of spandex. Summer time: biker shorts and short sleeve under armor. Winter: really cold days - full-on Hot Chili's!
In the morning I get suited up/markered up and out on the Capture Volume (area for capture) for ROMs (Range of Motion). While they process the ROMs, I usually have 10 minutes to scarf down some breakfast. Oatmeal/Juice, power food! Then it's capturing in the volume till lunch. By Capturing I mean whatever is on the schedule that day - dialoged scenes or stunts, which entail rolling around, falling, fighting, wirework, and getting beat up by foam sticks! Lunch... More beatings from the foam sticks... Hopefully wrapping by dinner... Go home and eat, shower, and get ready for the next crazy mo-cap day... sleep!
CCC: Please describe what it's like for you playing a game you've acted in and being able to see your moves and work unfold in a video game environment.
RL: I have been getting this question a lot lately. To be honest, while watching or playing, I really don't associate myself with the game character that much. Because it's so different from what happened on the capture set, unless it's a special move or event that happens, or something from the game triggers a memory from the set, I usually don't think of myself as the character in the game. I guess I'm just too into playing the game! When it does happen, it's more like "Ah yeah! I remember that one! Now back to kicking ass!" LOL!