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A Lovely Day to Scare... Tips on Creating the Perfect Voice Over Villain.

I know, its past Halloween and all the good boys a ghouls have all gone back to their crypts, however its not too late to think about next year. If you're into character voices of any type, you surely have one ominous voice in your repertoire. I do. Its almost as if required to have one and so we develop a character and we may even use it somewhere.

In the article What Makes a Voice Scary? Crafting a Villains Voice by Caroline Turner Cole, we discover some tips to use in crafting a truly moving and horrifying character. From classic character such as Maleficient to Pennywise, she guides us to techniques and styles that make these characters leap from the screen... or in some cases come to life (pun intended!)

She writes:

"A Lawful Evil character seeks to conquer and control. They are disciplined and may exploit the law for their own ends or may follow a strict personal doctrine. When voicing a lawful evil character, your vocal choices might be slower, quieter, more calmly creepy than outright anger. This character firmly believes they are right, the law (or some kind of moral code) gives them license and permission for their actions. That moral confidence can be portrayed through their voice by using a gentler evil approach rather than screaming obscenities."

Truly believable huh? Yes, characters need to feel in control and confident that they demand your obedience. Think Darth Vader. James Earl Jones I'm sure is a very nice man, but put his low rumble of a voice behind the actor and you have a truly terrifying and believable character.

Villains believe in manipulation, exploitation, and chaos. These are powerful motivators along with a sense that they know what conflict they're causing and enjoy doing so. The character feeds off the fear and that is what motivates them to be even more terrifying; at least in my case.

Not only the tone of the serious and ominous voice, but sinister laughter is key. Consider Mark Hamill as the Joker in the Batman animated series. A sinister laugh as his can send chills down ones spine. Combine that with effects such as reverb, delay, pitch changes and you have a perfect recipe for horror.

I myself have dabbled in creepy character voices myself. Take a listen:

Once you've developed a character as the article advises, you have a great tool in your belt that you can then take to market!

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