Jennifer Hale Addresses The Bayonetta 3 Casting Controversy
Acclaimed voice actress Jennifer Hale, known for her role as Commander Shepard in Mass Effectt series and the new voice of the action character Bayonetta, released a statement in response to the following discourse Bayonettaher former voice actress claimed she was not offered a living wage by PlatinumGames to resume her role as the Umbran witch.
Over the weekend, Hellena Taylor, the original voice actress for PlatinumGames’ stylish hack-and-slash series, Bayonetta, uploaded four videos to her official Twitter account claiming that PlatinumGames offered her an “insulting” flat rate of $4,000 to reprise her role as Bayonetta. It is worth noting that Bayonetta 3 also features an entire coven of Bayonettas from alternate timelines, which Taylor would presumably have been asked to record lines for as well. In the videos, Taylor called for fans to boycott the game and instead donate their money to charity.
Read more: Bayonetta’s original voice actress: ‘I urge people to boycott this game’ over ‘offensive’ payment offers
Before Taylor spoke, PlatinumGames told Game Informer that the substitution of Taylor for Hale was due to “various overlapping conditions” which made it “difficult” for Taylor to play Bayonetta again. Taylor says she wrote to Hideki Kamiya, the game’s CEO, to plead her case, which is when PlatinumGames sent her the “immoral” offer to do all her work on the game for just $4,000.
In her tweets, Taylor mentioned that she violated her NDA agreement with PlatinumGames by speaking out. After the suicidal thoughts, depression and anxiety she experienced during a period of little work, Taylor said she has nothing to lose.
“I’m not afraid of the non-disclosure agreement. I can’t even afford to drive. What are they going to do, take my clothes? Good luck to them,” Taylor said in a tweet.
Today, Hale spoke Bayonetta controversy in a tweet.
“I am under NDA and not at liberty to comment on this situation. My reputation speaks for itself,” Hale wrote. “I sincerely ask everyone to remember that this game was created by an entire team of hard-working, dedicated people, and I hope everyone will keep an open mind about what they’ve created.”
A longtime member of the voice acting community, Hale said her belief in “every actor’s right to be well paid” confirmed her “great respect” for her peers, citing the years of advocacy she has done in the field.
“In the end, I hope that everyone involved can resolve their differences in an amicable and respectful way,” she said.
Kotakuhas contacted Hale and Taylor for comment.
Prior to Hale’s post, fellow voice actor Yong Yea tweeted about the high likelihood that Hale had not been made aware of Taylor’s situation with Platinum before taking on the role of Bayonetta. Yea’s tweet includes screenshots of Hale liking tweets who suggested that NDAs prevented her from fully weighing in.
“Direct your frustrations at the companies and policy makers,” Yea wrote.
Read more: Bayonetta 3 Out in October, it has a mode to make the game less sexy
As fans wrestled with whether or not to follow Taylor’s boycott wishes Bayonetta 3‘s release, PlatinumGames’ Kamiya had his Twitter account temporarily deleted and suspended after mass blocking people who questioned him about Taylor’s claim. He’s back now, but has locked his account so no one can reply to his tweets.
Bayonetta 3 is scheduled for release on October 28 on the Nintendo Switch.