10 Upcoming Video Games Starring Your Favorite Hollywood Actors
The bond between Hollywood and the video gaming industry has been rapidly strengthening in recent times. One of the most notable instances would be when actor Keanu Reeves lent his voice and likeness to Cyberpunk 2077’s Johnny Silverhand. Stars like Oscar-winner Rami Malek and British thespian Charles Dance have also made appearances in Until Dawn and The Witcher 3, respectively. More upcoming games are also looking to follow suit and feature similar star power. This trend is expected to continue as the gaming industry keeps growing and individual titles reach unprecedented heights in production value. The success of TV adaptations like The Last of Us and The Witcher is bringing video game stories to a wider audience, and more big names are likely to join in on the fun in the upcoming years.
Nicolas Cage recently appeared in Dead by Daylight as himself, a game that pits four survivors against a powerful killer controlled by a fifth player. Cage expressed his excitement in joining the game’s “museum of horrors,” as horror is his favorite genre. Keanu Reeves, on the other hand, played Johnny Silverhand in Cyberpunk 2077 and has continued his role in the DLC Phantom Liberty. He showcased his trademark charisma, sarcastic wit, and rebellious nature in the game, which was well-received by fans. Idris Elba has also joined the Cyberpunk 2077 franchise and will play Solomon Reed in the Phantom Liberty DLC, a spy torn between loyalty to the state and his personal relationships.
Jodie Comer and David Harbour are set to make their video game debuts in the reboot of Alone in the Dark by THQ Nordic. Comer will play Emily Hartwood, while Harbour will play Detective Edward Carnaby. The game follows the original’s premise of players investigating Derceto Mansion in search of Emily’s missing uncle. The game promises to deliver an eerie atmosphere and spooky adventure, blending Lovecraftian horror with Southern gothic noir.
Vin Diesel will feature in Ark 2 as a character and executive producer. He is joined by a star-studded cast, including David Tennant, Michelle Yeoh, Gerard Butler, Elliot Page, and Russell Crowe, in the animated series Ark: The Animated Series. Baldur’s Gate 3 will also feature a renowned British character actor, Jason Isaacs, as Enver Gortash, the game’s chief antagonist.
Norman Reedus is returning to the Death Stranding franchise as Sam Bridges in Death Stranding 2, while Elle Fanning is making her debut in the series. Hideo Kojima, the game’s creator, has emphasized Fanning’s crucial role in the game, which would have required a script rewrite had she declined the role.
Lucy Liu stars in The Pirate Queen: A Forgotten Legend, a VR game that follows the story of Cheng Shih, one of the most successful pirate leaders in history. Liu also serves as an executive producer for the game, which aims to challenge the patriarchal status quo and inspire female empowerment.
In conclusion, the trend of Hollywood stars making appearances in video games is on the rise. This is due to the increasing popularity of the gaming industry and the growing production value of individual titles. With more TV adaptations of video games and the continued success of games featuring Hollywood stars, the trend is expected to continue to grow in the coming years.
The relationship between Hollywood and the video gaming industry has been growing increasingly close in recent years, with Cyberpunk 2077‘s Johnny Silverhand taking the voice and likeness of actor Keanu Reeves being perhaps the most notable, recent example. Oscar-winner Rami Malek starred in Until DawnBritish thespian Charles Dance voiced the Nilfgaardian Emperor in The Witcher 3and many more upcoming games are looking to utilize similar star power.
This trend does not look like it’s going away anytime soon, as the games industry only continues to grow and the production value of individual titles reaches unprecedented heights. The success of the Last of Us and The Witcher TV series have brought video games stories to a wider audience than ever, and may encourage even more famous names to join the party in the upcoming year and beyond.
10 Nicolas Cage – Dead By Daylight
Much like his recent appearance in The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talentthe enigmatic Nicolas Cage will play himself in Dead by Deadlight. This game pits four Survivors in a nightmarish realm where they are relentlessly pursued by a fifth player who controls a powerful Killer. After Cage was announced as Dead By Daylight‘s newest survivor, he made an appearance Summer Game Fest 2023’s opening night showcase, saying he was excited to join the game’s “museum of horrors.” Cage said his favorite genre of movie is horror, with past roles in the brilliant cosmic horror Mandy and as Dracula in Renfield.
9 Keanu Reeves – Cyberpunk 2077: Phantom Liberty
Keanu Reeve’s star role as Johnny Silverhand was arguably one of the best aspects of the notoriously buggy initial release of Cyberpunk 2077. His performance showcased his trademark charisma, sarcastic wit, and rebellious nature. Reeves was a huge part of the base game’s marketing, and he is in the limelight again in Phantom Liberty’s promotions. At the Xbox Games Showcase 2023, he explained how the DLC will unlock a new section of Night City for the players to explore as they attempt to rescue the President of the New United States of America.
8 Idris Elba – Cyberpunk 2077: Phantom Liberty
Cyberpunk 2077 has to be the best illustration of the video gaming industry’s growing popularity in Hollywood, now boasting the inclusion of Idris Elba. Elba’s career was launched by his iconic role as Stringer Bell in The Wire, and he has gone on to star in several acclaimed movies such as Beasts of No Nation and Thor: Ragnarok. He will play Phantom Liberty‘s Solomon Reed, with the character having been written with Elba in mind; the actor accepted the role early on in the production of the expansion. Reed is described as a spy struggling with his internal moral compass, torn between loyalty to the state and his personal relationships.
7 Jodie Comer – Alone in the Dark
Jodie Comer flexed her terrifying side in the hit show Killing Eve playing the aptly named Villanelle. Now, the actor turns her attention to the world of video games to play Emily Hartwood in THQ Nordic’s reboot of Alone in the Dark, the classic survival horror game. She will star alongside fellow styar David Harbour, who plays Detective Edward Carnaby. The remake of the 1992 original will follow in its footsteps, allowing players to control either Emily or Edward as they investigate Derceto Mansion, a remote countryside hospital, in their search for Emily’s missing uncle.
6 David Harbour – Alone in the Dark
Starring alongside Comer is David Harbour, who plays the arrogant and bitter Detective Edward Carnaby. Most people probably best know Harbour as James Hopper in Stranger Thingswhere he won audiences’ hearts as a tough cop with a heart of gold. This means he is no stranger to the supernatural and horror genres and this game certainly promises an eerie-atmosphere and spooky adventure, which takes place in 1920s Louisiana. Much like the 1992 original, this remake looks like it will blend Lovecraftian horror with Southern gothic noir. It will mark Harbour and Comer’s video game debuts and the inclusion of this A-list duo has raised anticipation greatly among fans.
5 Vin Diesel – Sheet 2
Vin Diesel has an important role in Ark 2not only featuring as a character but also serving as the executive producer. Furthermore, the Fast and Furious actor will be finding a new family as he joins the all-star cast of Ark: The Animated Serieswhich includes David Tennant, Michelle Yeoh, Gerard Butler, Elliot Page, and Russell Crowe. Ark 2 is a highly anticipated sequel, with the first installment coming out in 2015. It saw players stranded on an island plagued by roaming dinosaurs and mythical creatures, tasked with surviving in the hostile environment by hunting, harvesting resources, building shelters, and crafting all manner of items.
4 Jason Isaacs – Baldur’s Gate 3
This beloved British character actor will take on the role of Enver Gortash, a scheming politician and the chief antagonist of Baldur’s Gate 3. The RPG, set in Dungeons & Dragons‘ Forgotten Realms setting and named after one of its prominent cities, is the latest in a classic series that began in the late 1990s. While early portions of Baldur’s Gate 3 have been playable in early access since 2020, Issacs’ Gortash is a comparatively new reveal for the game, with his involvement being announced during the opening night presentation at Summer Game Fest 2023. Isaacs’ most recognizable role is the Harry Potter films’ Lucius Malfoy, with Black Hawn Down and The Death of Stalin as other notable projects.
3 Norman Reedus – Death Stranding 2
Norman Reedus is probably best known for his role as the badass, crossbow-wielding Daryl Dixon in The Walking Dead. He will surely be channeling this badass energy as he reprises the role of Sam Bridges in Death Stranding 2having originally played this character in the franchise’s first installment in 2019. Reedus has been enthusiastic about his continued work on the project, revealing it took several years to complete the motion capture sessions for Death Stranding. Specific details about Death Stranding 2 are still limited, but the original was named Screen Rant‘s 2019 Game of the Year, and fans will be delighted at the return of Reedus.
2 Elle Fanning – Death Stranding 2
Unlike Reedus, Fanning is a newcomer to the Death Stranding universe. However, Hideo Kojima, the game’s creator has emphasized that she will have an extremely important role in the game that will make use of her talents. Fanning is a bona fide A-Lister, starring in such films as Maleficent and 20th Century Women. Kojima has apparently been following Fanning’s career since her role in Super 8 and became interested in casting her once he saw her riveting starring role in Mary Shelley. While knowledge about Fanning’s character remains undisclosed, Kojima expressed her involvement was so crucial to the story that the team would have to rewrite the game’s script if Fanning had declined.
1 Lucy Liu – The Pirate Queen: A Forgotten Legend
Lucy Liu, one of the first Asian-American actresses to become an A-Lister in Hollywood, is now depicting another groundbreaking woman. The Pirate Queen revolves around the forgotten story of Cheng Shih, one of the most successful pirate leaders in history, who commanded a fleet of 70,000 ships during the 19th century in the South China Sea. Players will control Cheng Shih before she achieved this high status, navigating obstacles, solving puzzles, and outsmarting enemies to become the Pirate Queen. Liu is not only the star of the game but also serves as an executive producer. The VR game from Singer Studios will endeavor to challenge the patriarchal status quo and inspire female empowerment.
Hollywood stars aren’t necessarily strangers to video game appearances, but they’ve certainly grown more common in recent years. Death Stranding was notorious for celebrity cameos, and Hido Kojima’s love of film makes Elle Fanning’s appearance alongside Norman Reedus almost unsurprising. Lucy Liu and Vin Diesel’s dual role as actor and executive producer on The Pirate Queen and Ark 2 respectively is also a fascinating development for A-list stars in games. Cyberpunk 2077however, will simply continue its notable star-studded performance when Keanu Reeves is joined by Idris Elba in the Phantom Liberty expansion.