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Eliza Dushku

Eliza Dushku - "Yakuza" PS2 Video Game - Yakuza nabs celebrities, takes their voices

Sunday 18 June 2006, by Webmaster

What do Michael Madsen (Mr. Blonde), Michael Rosenbaum (Lex Luthor from Smallville), Eliza Dushku, (Faith from Buffy the Vampire Slayer), Rachel Leigh Cook (She’s All That), and Mark Hamill (uhh, Luke Skywalker) all have in common? Yup, none of them are Japanese and all of them are lending their voices in Sega’s American-ization of their Japanese crime-game Ryu ga Gotoku, now Yakuza. Thing is, none of em are playing Kazuma, the title’s lead.

For some more on the selection process, check out Gamespot’s interview with Justin Lambros, the US producer. Hoping to keep the Japanese dialogue track for that authentic Ryu ga Gotoku feel? Tough luck, says Lambros, "We were hoping to include the Japanese dialogue as an alternate track, but unfortunately there just wasn’t enough room on a single disc to put both sets of voice files."

All-star voice cast for Yakuza

SEGA has announced an all-star line-up of Hollywood actors to voice the characters in the upcoming western release of Yakuza.

Yakuza, already a hit in Japan, is gearing up for its western release, and today SEGA has announced the line-up of Hollywood talent lending their voices to the game’s characters. Michael Rosenbaum, Michael Madsen, Eliza Dushku, Rachel Leigh Cook, and Mark Hamill have all been signed up to voice characters in the game.

Madsen (Reservoir Dogs, Sin City) will voice Shimano, a Yakuza boss who relies on brutality to achieve his selfish goals; Michael Rosenbaum (Lex Luthor from Smallville) lends his voice to Nishiki, a ruthless Yakuza member who has turned against his friend Kazuma; Eliza Dushku, (Faith from Buffy the Vampire Slayer) voices Yumi, who grew up with Nishiki and Kazuma in an orphanage; Rachel Leigh Cook (She’s All That) plays Reina, the owner of the Serena hostess bar; and Mark Hamill (son of Darth Vader) voices Majima, a violent and insane Yakuza boss.

"Yakuza was an immense hit in Japan, and in bringing the game to the western market, we wanted to ensure that the subtle nuances of the game were brought to life," said Scott A. Steinberg, Vice President of Marketing, SEGA of America, Inc. "The title delivers the cinematic visuals and fast-paced action gamers demand, and with these top notch performances, they will experience a deep, character-driven storyline like nothing they have encountered before."

Yakuza is scheduled for release on the PlayStation 2 in September.