Actress Emily Rose is best known for her roles in HBO’s quirky series, “John from Cincinatti,” NBC’s medical drama “E.R.,” the CBS cult sci-fi hit “Jericho,” and ABC’s family drama “Brothers and Sisters.” She currently stars as FBI agent Audrey Parker in SyFy’s original series, “Haven,” which is based on Stephen King’s novella, The Colorado Kid.
Rose is best known to gamers as the voice behind Elena Fisher in the Uncharted franchise, which has become a smash critical and commercial success for developer Naughty Dog and publisher Sony Computer Entertainment America. The actress talks about her own videogame background and her latest role in Uncharted 2 in this exclusive interview.
What’s your background in videogames?
My background in videogames go back to Nintendo with the originals with Super Mario Bros. We used to play Olympics on the Power Pad. You used to run and stomp and do the high jumps and stuff. I also had a Commodore 64 in my room. I have a funny picture of me with a Polaroid playing that. And it’s funny because when I put it up on my Facebook page, I’m wearing ski goggles and earmuffs. And the only thing I can think of was is that I was playing the Space Invaders game I had to get in character to play this game in my room. And that’s about it. I mean, we weren’t really allowed to play Nintendo at our house. I had to ride down to my friend’s house and play Nintendo at her house if I was going to. We didn’t have one.
Did you ever try out any portable games?
Yes. I saved up for my first Gameboy. That was $60 at Costco when I was little because my parents were not just going to buy a videogame for me. I had to work for it. So I saved up my money for that and I used to play Tetris and Super Mario forever. In fact, my mom ended up beating Tetris and she was addicted to it.
That was the old black and white Game Boy?
Yeah, with the purple buttons. None of this new cool sidekick stuff that I have now.
Did you check into arcades at all to see what was going on back then?
I remember at the pizza parlor growing up and going and sitting at those tables that you could play Pac-Man across from each other. My mom used to, when she was pregnant with my sister, walk to the 7-11 and play Pac-Man on the thing. So a couple years ago I bought her one of those all in one little things that you can connect up to the TV to play Pac-Man.
What did you guys do for fun besides use your Commodore 64?
My dad was an engineer and so he had a bunch of computer stuff at the house all the time like the early Autocat. He would teach us how to draw shapes and lines and I felt like I was one of the nerdy parent’s kids or something. Our idea of a fun time was getting boxes with wire patterns to make the light bulb light up. That’s the stuff we used to do growing up.
What video games did you play when you were older?
I secretly loved Halo and Tony Hawk Pro Skater through college. I think my boyfriend at the time had a PlayStation. That's early stuff, but doing Uncharted makes me feel like we're at a very relevant place with the technology. It's like starting a whole new phase with motion capture and performance capture and being involved as an actor. I feel like in the future, we'll look back at this time in terms of what's happening with film and games and see this as a crossover. I'm really excited to be a part of it. It hasn't changed my love for games.
So do you play PlayStation 3 games now?
I spent at year biting my nails going back and forth on whether or not to actually buy a PlayStation 3. I finally did a couple years ago because I had to play my game and the PS3 was packaged with my game. I remember I went to the GameStop and I got the little manual on Uncharted and I walked up to the desk and couldn't help it. I was so excited. I was like, "Yeah, that's me." And the dude kind of looked up at me and he goes, "Yeah, right." I was in Seattle so they didn't even believe me. They were just like, "you're weird, buy your Christmas present and leave."
Are you any good at Uncharted?
I would like to think that I am actually good at it on Easy. I have to switch the controls whenever you go to point the gun up or down. I have to flip flop them. I'm different like that. But yeah, I'm able to pop the game in and get past a few levels pretty quickly. I think I haven't played it all the way through, but I plan on it.
As someone who actually played games when you were younger and likes games now, what did you learn working on Uncharted and Uncharted 2?
The cool thing about working with Naughty Dog on this project is just the reality of it. I remember looking at Pixar with Toy Story and being so excited when they could get really close to reality, but yet not be reality. I think one of the greatest things that Naughty Dog does with these characters is they really allow people looking for an escape, looking for entertainment, to become the hero. Everyone wants to go on these journeys. I’ve buried time capsules in my backyard and would make up fake treasure maps as a kid. People are just longing to get out of the norm to do these fun things. It’s just so cool because with Uncharted 2, it’s like you want to get it as close to reality as you can. This process has shown me that they really desire that as well. They want our real reactions. They want our real mannerisms. They want all that and this new technology allows them to capture that. So that’s really cool.
Bookmark/Search this post with
About the Author
John Gaudiosi has been covering videogames for the past 20 years for outlets like The Washington Post, CNET, Wired Magazine and CBS.com. He has focused on the convergence of entertainment and videogames for outlets like Video Business, Home Media Magazine, Entertainment Weekly, The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. He currently serves as Editor-in-Chief of Gamerlive.TV and is also a freelance game columnist for Reuters and writes for outlets like Forbes.com, NVISION, Official PlayStation Magazine, EGM Now, Geek Monthly, PrimaGames.com, and Yahoo! Games. John also serves as the video game expert for NBC in Washington D.C. and has produced videogame documentaries for The History Channel and Starz Entertainment. John was named one of the Top 50 Game Journalists in the world by Next-Gen.biz in 2007. He is the co-author of Scholastic Books' How to Get into Videogames, Prima Publishing's Madden: Twenty Years of Videogame Football and Electronic Arts: The Official History.