Most celebrities are celebrities for a reason—they are incredibly talented. And in today's age, when video games are becoming more esteemed and respected as an art form, more and more celebrities are being drawn to the medium.
That said, they don't always nail their roles. Whether it's through bad direction, poor writing, and/or just a general lack of care, some celebrities did a rather poor job with their respective voice roles. We're here to take a look at both the best and the worst of what celebrity voice acting has to offer.
10 Best - Jack Black
When is Jack Black's infectious energy NOT entertaining? Luckily, he proved just as talented behind a microphone as he is in front of a camera with Brutal Legend. This was a game published by EA back in 2009, and it followed Jack Black's Eddie Riggs, a roadie for a terrible heavy metal band. Granted, Jack Black was essentially playing himself (even down to Eddie's physical appearance), but there's nothing wrong with that when Black is so entertaining in the first place.
9 Worst - Peter Dinklage
We don't think it's controversial to say that Destiny was a massive disappointment on many fronts. One of those fronts was the voice acting, and no one faced the fans' ire quite like Peter Dinklage. Dinklage has proved himself as an adept actor over the years, and he was a standout on Game of Thrones (which is saying something, considering the caliber of talent on display). That said, something went terribly wrong with Destiny, and Dinklage provided one of the driest, most boring vocal performances ever captured by a celebrity. We don't blame him, though, considering all the other disappointments...
8 Best - Ray Liotta
Video games were still relatively niche in 2002, although they were definitely starting to earn some respect by the wider entertainment industry. Grand Theft Auto III proved to be a monumental success, and A-list actors saw their chance. Goodfellas star Ray Liotta hopped on board, providing the voice of Tommy Vercetti in Vice City. Even to this day, Tommy is considered one of the greatest Grand Theft Auto protagonists, and a lot of that acclaim has to do with Liotta's lively performance. It's easily one of the all-time best.
7 Worst - 50 Cent
50 Cent should really stick to rapping, because as he's proven time and time again, an actor he is not. In the late 2000s (AKA the height of Fiddy fame), 50 Cent released a few video games starring himself, including Bulletproof and Blood on the Sand. The latter actually wasn't a bad game, but 50's voice acting proved to be the worst thing about it. His vocal delivery was utterly passionless and without any hint of emotion, like simply read the lines off the script in twenty minutes before calling it a wrap and heading out to a party or something.
6 Best - Samuel L. Jackson
By San Andreas, the Grand Theft Auto series had proved itself to be a formidable force in the entertainment industry. Luckily, San Andreas continued the series' quality streak, aided in large part by Samuel L. Jackson's typically-reliable performance as antagonist Officer Tenpenny. Fans couldn't believe their luck - a new Grand Theft Auto AND Samuel L. Jackson!? Luckily, he didn't phone in the performance, imbuing the character with all the signature Jackson-isms that we've come to love and expect over the years. And with this, the video game medium had officially attracted the big names. Big names who actually trying, that is.
5 Worst - Bruce Willis
We say "actually trying," because video games HAVE landed big name stars in the past. For example, Bruce Willis lent his voice to the 1998 video game Apocalypse. Heck, his face was even on the cover! If that wasn't enough to endorse the game, then nothing was.
However, Bruce put in about as much effort as he puts into his latest movie work. That is, none at all. His vocal delivery was monotonous and emotionless, and while he did provide a few funny one-liners, they were ruined by his lifeless line delivery. You could just tell that his heart wasn't in this one.
4 Best - Stephen Merchant
Stephen Merchant isn't exactly a megastar like the rest of the celebrities on this list, but he's still seen incredible success. He co-created and co-wrote The Office alongside Ricky Gervais, wrote and starred in Extras, and gained fame as one third of the popular Ricky Gervais Show. And while he was popular in his native Britain, he finally attained widespread success in North America with his delightful and hilarious performance as Wheatley in Portal 2. His line delivery helped make Wheatley an instant fan favorite and a welcomed addition to the overall Portal mythos.
3 Worst - Michael Madsen
Michael Madsen has always been a bit of a one-note actor, always with the intimidating growls and mumbles. That said, he's certainly found his niche and he does it well, so all the power to him. And while his performance in Reservoir Dogs was one of the movie's strongest assets, his reprisal for the video game was laughably embarrassing. He was the only actor to reprise his role, but we sort of wish he didn't, because it tarnished the memories we had of him in the movies. If anything, it proves that he was in it for a quick buck and absolutely nothing else.
2 Best - Keith David
Keith David has one of the most recognizable voices in Hollywood, so imagine everyone's surprise when they heard it coming from the Arbiter's mouth. Including The Arbiter was a bit of a controversial decision considering how popular Master Chief was, but having Keith David voice him certainly helped smooth things over.
He didn't wow us with dramatics or anything - he just commendably gave a reserved and mellow performance that nicely matched The Arbiter's patient and thoughtful personality. It was a perfect fit for the character.
1 Worst - Bill Murray
Some celebrities appear in video games and genuinely want to give a good performance. And then some celebrities (looking at you as well Michael Madsen) clearly use the medium to lazily show up, coast on their name, and cash a check. That was unfortunately the case with Bill Murray when he reprised his iconic role for the Ghostbusters video game. We don't know if he had trouble reading off a script in a studio booth or what, but there was no energy or heart in his performance. It was quiet, mumbly, and utterly without conviction or care. Worst of all - it was boring. And we never thought we'd say that about Bill Murray.