Acclaimed British actor Tim Curry may be most famous to regular folk for his roles in The Rocky Horror Picture Show and… Muppet Treasure Island, but he’s most famous around here for his work in video games.
You see, Tim Curry – who Infinite Lives reminds us turns 65 today – is Kotaku After Dark’s favourite actor of all time. And you’re about to see why.
Possessed with that rarest of abilities to be able to act both seriously and take the piss (sometimes at the same time), Curry is a modern popular culture cult hero, having played everything from a cross-dressing musical star to a maniacal clown (in “It”) to the Lord of Darkness himself in 1985’s “Legend”.
Yet for me, his most memorable performances are in video games. Like providing the voice for Kilrathi villain Melek nar Kiranka in 1993 sci-fi epic Wing Commander III. Or Emperor Doviculus in 2009’s heavy metal adventure Brütal Legend. Or, in his finest role on the digital screen, the delightful Premier Anatoly Cherdenko in strategy game Red Alert 3, in which he not only gets to act (the game featured full-motion video cutscenes), but ham it up for what feels like hours worth of video.
You can scroll through the gallery above for some of Curry’s stand-out video game roles. Happy 65th birthday, Tim!
In 1993’s Wing Commander III, Curry lends his voice to the role of Melek, who is the darker Kilrathi featured in the cutscene at the beginning of this video. It’s not his greatest work, but doing anything in Wing Commander III earns you a special place in my heart.
2009’s Brütal Legend has a ton of quality voice work, from leading man Jack Black to heavy metal legends like Rob Halford. Yet it’s Curry, playing the evil Emperor Doviculus, who steals the show, somehow managing to make a deep, husky voice still sound the right kind of camp for this ludicrous game.
By now you should have guessed, when somebody needs a sinister voice actor with a British accent, Curry is a good man to call. In the first Dragon Age, he plays bad guy Arl Rendon Howe, and does a cracking… sinister villain with a British accent.
For all his other great work, though, nothing compares to Red Alert 3. If you haven’t played the game and are a fan of Curry, I’d suggest making a cup of tea, settling in and watching this one in its entirety.
Total Recall is a look back at the history of video games through their characters, franchises, developers and trends.