Red Dead Redemption 2 actor Gabriel Sloyer recently spoke to Eurogamer about his five-year experience working on the project with Rockstar Games.
According to Sloyer, the vocal talent didn’t know what game they were working on, nor what their characters’ names were, when they signed onto the project.
Rockstar does a great job of keeping things secret. You can’t tell your girlfriend or anyone what you’re working on. And it’s five years! They didn’t tell us anything, but we figured it out pretty soon that this is what we were doing, and it was a prequel…
The first thing we shot was either rescuing John from wolves – which does appear very early, though there was a part with Javier fighting off wolves with a torch in a cave, so it didn’t happen exactly the way it does now – or the bar fight sequence. And I’m still going… what the fuck? I’d just done GTA5 and did not know what was going on.
At that moment I did not know who I was playing. I worked it out in the first couple of months, for sure. We knew because of the boots, and because of the language we were in a Western. And it doesn’t take a genius… eventually we were like, well, what Western does Rockstar do?
The obvious answer to that question was Red Dead Redemption, which led to some of Sloyer’s fellow actors figuring things out a bit ahead of time. However, the secrecy involved in game development is hardly news. Fallout 4‘s actors famously didn’t know what game they were working on until just before it was announced.
But keeping the game title and character names under wraps wasn’t all Rockstar did to keep a lid on RDR2 rumors. Actors shot plenty of scenes that didn’t make it to the final cut of the game, possibly including fake endings.
I remember we shot a lot of stuff that was cut. I wasn’t in the writer’s room, obviously, but I’ve heard rumours… My castmates might say – oh I think they were going in this direction with this guy and then they switched him back the other way. We’re just guessing like anybody else.
And then my feeling is, are you filming this fake ending for us? To make us confused? Are these things you’re deciding between, or…? But that’s the process. Think how many takes in a film don’t get used at all
Now, we’re not saying Rockstar definitely made multiple endings just to confuse the voice talent, but it would be one ingenious way to keep spoilers in check.